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From HotelNewsNow.com:

Search engine marketing is often highly tactical; it involves checking things off a list to ensure the highest potential for visibility in the search engine results pages (SERPs). But social media is a completely different space. While developing a presence there can be beneficial, diving right in can be harmful (especially for smaller properties) without first establishing a solid plan. Search (on the organic side) is about doing; social is about planning.

What do you have time to do well?
Before running around yelling things like “We need Tumblr, Pinterest, Twitter, and Scribd accounts and we need them YESTERDAY!” take a step back and consider how much time you actually have in a given week to do the ongoing maintenance of posting content, responding to comments and overseeing your social media platforms.

Remember: The only people who will notice that you don’t have an insert social media profile here account are the people who already are using them. So if you have them but don’t use them effectively, it can be worse in the long run than doing nothing.

What are your guests already doing?
Rather than starting with a specific social medium and trying to figure out what to say on it, it’s often more productive to first figure out where your current demographic is active. Unless your brand is aggressively trying to break into a new market segment, starting where the conversation is already happening is often your best bet. And with 845 million monthly active users (as of December 2011), Facebook is a must even for smaller brands.

Now that we have a starting point, it’s time to jump into some time-saving tactics… continue reading at HotelNewsNow.com.

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Get ready for an intense webinar! Tracy Terry, a wizard of inbound marketing techniques and frequent writer for Hubspot, will be teaching you Advanced Social Media Tactics to help jump start your social media campaign. Using the tools of the trade effectively is a key component of executing your social media strategy. Tracy is going to walk you through her tips and tricks on leveraging social media channels for your brand. She’ll focus on the big three:  Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter, touching on Google+, Blogging and tools.  You don’t want to miss this opportunity!

Learn…
- How to use the LinkedIn home page to your advantage
- How to make the most of your profile page
- Making the most of LinkedIn features
- Facebook profile tips and tricks
- Facebook pages best practices
- Making the most of Facebook custom tabs
- Facebook features, apps, and integrations
- Twitter best practices
- Social Media tools for stats and management

Date
Wednesday, March 21, 3 – 4 p.m.

Cost
$25 per log in for WH&LA members.
$75 per log in for non-members.

Registration Deadline
Friday, March 16

REGISTER ONLINE NOW or download the pdf registration form.

Sponsored by:

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From the Wall Street Journal “In Charge” blog:

If your small business doesn’t yet have a Facebook page, LinkedIn profile or Twitter feed, a recent study may persuade you to finally join the social-media bandwagon.

Sixty-five percent of all U.S. adults now use social-networking sites, up from 61% a year ago and just 5% in 2005, reports Pew Research Center. The findings are based on telephone interviews conducted in April and May by Princeton Survey Research Associates International.

Most of the growth over the past year came from Americans over the age of 30, with seniors accounting for the bulk of it. One-third of adults ages 65 and older say they now use social-networking sites, compared with 26% who said this a year ago. Still, young folks between 18 and 29 years old remain the overall biggest group tapping social networks today, accounting for 83% of the total.

On a typical day, 43% of U.S. adults said they visit sites like Facebook and Twitter, up from 38% a year ago, the survey finds. Among just Internet users ages 50 to 64, social-networking usage on a typical day increased to 32% from 20%. Compared with other online activities, respondents overall said they only use email and search engines more frequently than social networks.

Read more at the Wall Street Journal “In Charge” blog here.

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Over the coming weeks we will feature information on each educational session to be held at the Wisconsin Lodging Conference. The highlight series will give you a glimpse into the sessions, introduce the speakers, and provide a link to register to take advantage of the abundance of lodging information planned.

Increase Online Sales Through Social Networking

Learn how to increase your online sales conversions rate by as much as 500 percent and your website traffic by 20 percent by gaining access to millions of potential customers and prospects for your lodging property through Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Join Stephen Woessner of Predictive ROI to learn a practical and tactical 10-step social networking process that will help you persuade this rapidly growing and influential audience by creating and sharing content like social networking status updates, blogs, website content pages, podcasts, YouTube videos, and more. REGISTER NOW!

Wisconsin Lodging Conference & Trade Show
November 6-8, 2011
Radisson Paper Valley Hotel, Appleton


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Do you have a good promotion that you would like to put in front of our more than 2,500 Facebook and Twitter followers? Every Wednesday we post an exclusive promo from one of our member properties, and we run Facebook ads to drive traffic. The cost is $125, and space is filling fast – there are only a handful of weeks left for the rest of the year. You can reserve the week of your choice by clicking here.

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Keep up-to-date on lodging industry issues and connect with your peers while following WH&LA on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin. Get alerts on new blog posts, advertising opportunities, travel trends and more.

Here’s how to find us:

Facebook: Find WH&LA at www.facebook.com/WisLodging, where you can connect with other WH&LA fans and share your industry news or articles related to the industry.

Twitter: We tweet @WisLodging – find updates on blog posts and get monthly STR data as soon as we have it.

Linkedin: Connect with the WH&LA group here www.linkedin.com/groupRegistration and start or join discussions on industry topics. This group is for WH&LA members only.

Got questions about WH&LA social media?

E-mail Michelle communication@wisconsinlodging.org in the WH&LA office or call 262/782-2851.

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Are you or your property on Twitter and Facebook? Follow WH&LA!

You can find us on Twitter @WisLodging and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/WisLodging. You’ll find last minute marketing and advertising opportunities, blog update notifications and more! Keep connected and show your support for WH&LA!

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Many members have been asking us how they get their property highlighted on our “Traveling in Wisconsin” Facebook page, as it is obviously bringing in reservations, as this example shows:

The answer is simple – there are two ways to get your property featured in a post!

First, you can be a Featured Property at our web site for a month – that comes with a free Facebook post. The cost is $115 for a top row spot, and $90 for a 2nd row spot. Download the Featured Properties reservation form here.

Second, you can order an ad in the 2011 Wisconsin Lodging Directory! Any property that orders a ¼ page or larger ad receives a free Facebook, Tweet and mention in our StayInWisconsin blog. The Lodging Directory Advertising Rate Card is available for download here (about 3 MB) and you can order your ad online here!

If you have any questions, contact Bill Elliott or call 262/782-2851.

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Web 2.0 & social media for business – seems I can’t open my email anymore without seeing another article, blog or headline about utilizing the web to increase your visibility, engage customers or generate interest in promotions.  The following are some of the best from my email this week & are definitely worth checking out:

Google’s Matt Cutts on “How to Get Better Visibility on Google”
In less than five minutes Matt shares 5 common sense & completely above board tips to increase the Google ranking of your site.  Some may be elementary, but this short video is definitely worth your time.[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GK0aQrCDEo]

Google also recently launched a new free tool in their Local Business Center which allows “business owners to control the content of their business listings as they appear in Google Search and Google Maps.”  Check out this blog post by Google on how to access the following info on your site: Impressions, Actions, Top search queries and Zip codes where driving directions come from.  Google also does a good job of including a short instructional video with more info on using this new dashboard.  Pretty cool, eh?

Hotels jumping on social media bandwagon
If you’re not sure how Twitter applies to your property, Maya Meinert shares info on how companies such as Marriott International are utilizing Twitter.  Also included are single property tweeters including LA’s Westin Bonaventure and Milwaukee’s Iron Horse Hotel.  With over 1,800 followers, the Iron Horse Hotel shares info on current promotions, responds to guest comments and offers fun, random thoughts (“Is vice-versa to a dyslexic just plain redundant?”)

Meet The Hotel Tweet
Over at HotelsMag.com, Adam Kirby shares more info on properties using Twitter and has some good advice from Susan Black, a NY “travel industry social media consultant”:
“Develop a personable, recognizable voice for your Twitter account and focus on building brand loyalty, picking up one-off business when you can, Black says—and never lose sight of the fact that Twitter is a conversation, not a bullhorn.
“It’s not one-way. It’s a dialogue,” Black says. “Be there to answer the queries. It’s well known on Twitter that people follow other people when they know there is a person or a personality behind it.”

And finally, if you’re looking to the future and want to know what’s headed this way soon, check out this post from 4Hoteliers.com:  Will you be Ready for 2012, The Real Year of Mobile. 1.5 BILLION users accessing the web from mobile devices by 2012?  If that doesn’t make your head spin & your stomach a bit queasy, you’re stronger than I!

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