How Hoteliers Can Mine The Data For Social Media Success

TORONTO—Let’s face it, the likes and retweets of your hotel’s social media posts are only telling part of the story, and determining your social strategy’s ROI simply isn’t black and white. Are you doing well socially? To help answer that question, Engagement Labs helps businesses measure their social media success or lackluster results and learn who among their competitors is doing it better.

“Engagement Labs has been around for about five years and started in the world of social media metrics. There were companies who measured internal analytics, and there was a need for industry benchmark insight and third-party measurement. In digital, there’s Comscore, but there was no company doing the same for social media, and we wanted to become the social ranking system,” said Bryan Segal, CEO of Engagement Labs, based here and with offices in Montreal, Mexico City and New Brunswick, NJ. “If you realize it all started with the year of the PC, then the year of mobile and that digital is the combo of both, when people think of social, it’s the sexy side which is only 10% of all conversation, but there’s also word of mouth. As we move forward, it’s about developing a measurement system that allows you to track offline word of mouth and combine that with total social to measure results.”

According to Segal, Engagement Labs’ target audience is any company that is socially enabled, involved in marketing and focused on learning about its fans or followers, including hotel brands.

“What we do is data and analytics, so it’s about helping them understand the different types of strategies and success they can achieve. All social media is not one social media. It’s varied. Facebook is different from Instagram. We focus on a total social process. Get the data, activate on it and guide success based on predictive measurements,” he said. “Our job is to measure data from a third party. Membership has its privileges, but not in terms of measurement. If you’re a client that has no bearing on the rankings, the data is what it is. In order to dive further, that’s where we would work directly with a company.”

Data is instrumental to the decision-making process and having access to this information coupled with a higher level of comprehension through a third-party measurement company can help businesses connect with their customers, streamline their ability to drive decisions and remain competitive.

“In the hotel world, we’ve seen brands move away from selling rooms to selling ideas and emotions. That’s why Instagram is successful. We can understand what a hotel might need and provide a holistic solution. Sometimes data is not enough, so we can show businesses how to deliver a strategy from there,” he said. “Social media is complex and some companies are more in tune than others. We can help businesses who are well-resourced to deliver the data or we can do all of that for you and put it in a presentation that is easy to digest.”

When it comes to measuring the effectiveness of your social media efforts, there is no blanket approach. Professional guidance, data analysis and an in-depth understanding of the target audience should be part of the game plan.

“If you do it, and do it right, the benefit is amazing. If you do it wrong, the result can be extremely detrimental. The power of social and digital media, as well as its shareability, can drive worldwide reach in a nanosecond. That same high can be a low and that’s why you need a focus and a strategy,” he said. 

—Corris Little