What does a day in the life of a social media marketer look like? I’m not a marketer, so if I get some of your terms wrong, forgive me. I thought maybe we could do a walkthrough of a fictitious social media marketer, Yolanda, for a small hotel group (four hotels) in Boston. I picked hotels just because otherwise I’d have picked a software company. Let’s walk through a workflow, and then reconstruct it in bullets at the end.
Rise and Shine
First thing in the morning, Yolanda sends a quick tweet out to Twitter saying that she’s wondering what’s going on in Boston this week. A few of the locals give her some news she knows, but @loudmouthman mentions that he heard there’s a tech conference there Thursday. She searches around and finds it. Score, an opportunity to find some potential guests for her hotel.
Yolanda checks her RSS reader to see who’s been talking about hotels in Boston, meetups in Boston, conferences, events, tweetups, vacations, etc. She has several targeted searches with RSS feeds cooked for each, so browsing through to get the pulse of the city is easy. Yolanda also has a few hotel blogs and travel blogs in her reader, in case the occasional great idea is something she can run with. She hasn’t started blogging yet, but comments regularly. People know her name.
After getting the lay of the land, Yolanda pours her second cup of coffee and browses Yelp. She’s not frustrated like some business leaders. Instead, Yolanda has a proactive approach. She’s built a process at her four hotels such that on sign-in, guests are invited to get a Yelp account, so that they can learn what people are saying about restaurants and other venues in Boston. There’s also a polite encouragement to rate their stay via Yelp. (It’s a bit gutsy, and the CEO was a bit spooked when she started the practice, but so far – fingers crossed – people are giving her hotels a good rating.)
Mid-day, Yolanda’s helped her VP of marketing with some more traditional business for a few hours. She was happy to hear the VP say that she was willing to try out a YouTube promotion idea, and also to put some sponsor dollars towards a few Boston tech blogs that don’t write about hotels, but that are central to some events where people might find the affinity and choose her hotels over others. The VP kept wondering why the budget for both projects was so low, thinking there was an accident, but hey, social media isn’t about money: it’s about smaller victories.
Yolanda’s listening posts have found someone complaining about a bad stay. She goes onto the blog in question, apologizes for the situation, and offers a free night the next time this blogger is in town. This merits four comments from the blogger’s audience saying that this is good service. Yolanda feels happy. She worries about what listening will be like if this kind of interaction takes on.
On Twitter, Yolanda helps two people talking about the Red Sox to know where they might want to grab a bite after the game. Not at her hotel’s restaurant. None of her four are really known for post-baseball celebrations. She recommends the Boston Beer Works, which is always fun after a game, though a bit noisy.
Before Leaving Work
Yolanda wraps up her website analytics reports and realizes that she’s getting decent traffic from a specific blogger’s post. She thought it was positive, but had no idea it would drive so much awareness of the site. She makes a note to think about hosting a few bloggers’ meetups in their meeting rooms, free of charge, and seeing if that brings in some more guests. Yolanda closes the lid on her laptop and heads off to a Web Inno event in Kendall Square. It’s not her crowd, but she’s got a hunch it doesn’t hurt for her to hang with the geek crowd.
Yolanda used Twitter, some listening tools (Technorati.com and blogsearch.google.com), mixed with an RSS reader (Google Reader), commented on several blogs, and focused on Yelp as an active part of her marketing mix.
Now it’s your turn: is this realistic? Would you see this adding value? What else might she have done?
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Photo credit, kennymatic