Welcome to the show notes of the Boostly Podcast Season 8 Episode 13. This is a recap of my Facebook live video where I talked about content ideas during the coronavirus crisis.
Here’s the audio for this episode:
Here’s the video for this episode:
02:40 Why am I doing this
3:00 Be loud and keep talking in your content
6:00 How to be proactive
8:00 Social media content ideas
11:00 Social media videos
12:00 Use the stories feature
14:00 Email marketing content
17:00 Blog content ideas
19:00 Social Media Sorted
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Transcript from the Episode
In the past 24 hours, Airbnb have come out and they’ve tried to do a little bit of firefighting. The CEO of one of the founders of Airbnb has come out and apologized how they have acted and how they are going to refund hosts. If you ask me it’s a little too late. Booking.com as well have come out and have tried to do the whole firefight and exercise again. It’s a little too late. They are sort of trying to get back in your good books, they call you partner, they call me and new partners, but the way they’ve acted, that is not how you treat a partner, the conversations that I’ve been having with other people in the field from all over the world hosts and peers in the industry, I think this could be a very defining point in the whole book direct movement.
So for those of you who doesn’t know what book direct means, it’s when you book directly with the host, it’s what myself has been championing for the last four years. It’s what many people around the world have been talking about. We’ve even got a Book Direct day, which was on the sixth or fifth of February.
And you know, it’s something that we talk about every single day, and it’s something that people in my world and you know from all over the world talk about and book direct is something that you know, if 10 or 15 years ago, let’s just say 60% of all guest bookings would have come from Maybe more 70 80% but slowly because of the sheer spending power of booking holidays group, the Expedia group and Airbnb, it just means that that that ratio has got lower and lower because the general public for whatever reason think that the benefits are there to go and book via booking.com, Airbnb Expedia but with all of this that has been going on and hosts potentially guests will start to look over ways and mean and there’s going to be so many people watching this live and watching this back on the replay, but will have been affected by the online travel agents over the course of the last 10 days.
I think the plus side of this, again is that the book direct movement will get more and more traction. I think that more people will look to come and book direct but now more than ever, it’s really important that you don’t just hide, don’t just go dark and I’ve said this time and time again I think I said this with Simon Soar which was the first episode that I did on this on the 17th of March which is over two weeks ago I said do not go quiet.
Be loud and keep talking in your content
And unfortunately, there’s been so many hosts that I have seen from the hospitality community, which is my Facebook group from, from even from the Boostly world that has gone quiet because there have been so many things that have been going on. But this is my message. And this is the message that I’m going to continue to say over the course of the next weeks and months is you’ve got to be loud, and you’ve got to keep talking. You’ve got to stay prevalent and you’ve got to be in front of potential guests and previous guests.
I know that this works and what I’m going to talk to you tonight is definitely going to help you work and again the question that I have to everybody that are watching live on the replay. Are you posting every single day on social media at the moment on your business pages, wherever it is Instagram or Facebook or LinkedIn and I’ll tell you why this is important. Over the past couple of weeks, there have been two different types of people in my world. There have been people that have been proactive, which is what I’m talking about during this whole series and as well as being reactive and proactive has basically meant that even when there are no bookings coming in right now or even guest to serve right now because of lockdown and travel restrictions, there’s been people that have pivoted diversified and they’ve been doing lots of little ways and means have been able to bring in income right now.
How to be proactive
There have been people who offer now their breakfast that they do for takeaways and deliveries have been people that have died off farm shops or online for veggie delivery. There has been people that have been doing online sessions, one on one sessions for talents that they have, and these are the people that have been totally proactive. And it has been those that have been reactive. They’ve been those that have been going into Facebook groups, they’ve been ones that are just scrolling through the comments, wasting hours, just sort of trying to find information on grants and government grants and government bailouts. And that’s reactive.
The main message that I want to spread through this is that don’t worry and don’t stress about the things that you can’t control. There are so many things out here that you can’t control how long the lockdown is going to last for when you’re going to get money back from either Airbnb or the government or bailouts or insurance, those things you can’t control. But I tell you, what you can control you can control you, you can control your business, and you can control on how you communicate.
I cannot help every single one of you, I cannot help every single one of you, those of you that are going to be reluctant, those of you that are going to be reactive, those of you that are going to bitch and moan on social media about XYZ, I can’t help you but for those of you that are going to be proactive, those of you who are going to watch these videos, those of you who are going to put it into action and implement it into your business, then I can and what I’m going to do, I’m going to be helping you and sharing with you content ideas that what you can be doing on your social Media, those that you can be done through email marketing, and those of you that can be doing so on your blog post.
Social media content ideas
Number one, when it comes to social media right now, so important, every single day that you can be posting online, when it comes to social media, there are some things that I’ve noticed other people doing. And whenever I’ve seen this on Instagram, or I’ve seen this on Facebook or elsewhere, it’s things that are just making so much sense. I’ve seen some really cool inspirational type of posts on social media. So number one, what I’ve noticed when people are doing bed and breakfast, they’ve been putting together a recipe, they’ve been sharing their recipes that they are cooking for guests. So this could be a hotel, it could be a bed and breakfast, but they’ve been posting out their recipes.
What I’ve also noticed is that now more than ever, because people are literally in lockdown. There are so many people that are trying different skills, different online courses, or whether it’s just a case of getting out the old cookbook. So if you are there posting up recipes that you’ve used for your business, whether it’s breakfast Whatever then people are going to tune in. And again, think about this when you’re putting together your content. Now, you don’t have to do a recipe, but you could post out a picture of your unique selling point. So the USP, your unique selling picture. And again, for so many people, this can be so many different things, when we would come to post our content up online, it would be remembering people about the feeling that they get when coming to stay at a place like ours.
So we wouldn’t for example, just post a picture of our beds, you know, we’ve got cool beds but it’s really more of the view. It’s the interaction with the animals. It’s that feeling of just being able to explore and being out in the open in the piece in the quiet. Try and think back to your ideal guest right now. There’s going to be a lot of people, particularly if you’re in more rural areas who are in lockdown and who are in maybe apartments if they live in city centers, maybe locked down in small houses where they have Got the view so again by you doing that by posting out every single day a variation of it so I wouldn’t just say keep putting the same post up every single day but variations. Then you’re going to be top of mind well there will be a time and a place where people will have been cooked up inside for an extended period of time and they will start having pay packets come in and they will want to have something to look forward to.
And staycation is going to be one of the most overused phrases that you are going to hear in the next four to six to eight weeks. International travel as we know it corporate travel, international flight and travel that will take a lot longer to pick up because of just where the world is right now. And you know how our mindsets are.
Staycations and travelling within your country of where you are that is going to be a heavily overused phrase and I guarantee that the UK Government, UK tourism will definitely be used In that and so if you can start now and get ahead of the curve and just sort of keep reminding people whether that is posting it off on your social media say on Facebook as an example but then sharing it in Facebook groups that are in a two to three hour radius of where you are, I guarantee that you’re going to be that top of mind you’re going to be the ones where people are going to kind of remember when it comes to these people making the booking.
Social media videos
If you want to do a little bit more than pictures then the next is videos our videos is a super cool way of keeping more engagement on your social media. Again, you could just do a live video and just remind people about your amazing local area about things that you’re you’re seeing and doing and again what the local community is doing. Again, it doesn’t have to be professional. It doesn’t have to have all the lights or the really expensive microphone, it could simply be just picking up the phone and just talking into the camera and just documenting your day.
As crazy and silly as that may sound to you, there will be people out there that want to see this because again, everybody’s world right now, wherever you are, is inundated with news and scaremongering and stats and all of the things every single day is cramming on in and to have a little bit of a relief and to have people and to have you talk about something calisthenics, it’s going to be a nice relief to with social media.
The cool thing about it is that it costs no money. It’s free to post you know, it’s free to add a video free to add a picture, you know, obviously Facebook and Instagram and all of these companies they will pester you to boost your post to give them money you don’t have to.
Use the stories feature
Please remember that and go a step further than just adding a post on Facebook by adding a post on Instagram or wherever use the stories feature. If you notice anything when you open up your app on Facebook or Instagram, the story section is right at the very top. LinkedIn, which is another big social media platform, they are going to be bringing in LinkedIn stories. If you look at YouTube, when you open up YouTube, it’s got YouTube stories, every social media, as we know it has got a stories feature, they’re all there about make sure that you are utilizing this. And again, you can put the exact same content into there, and it will be in front of people. And then the cool thing about stories is that every single person that watches your story, you can see who that is. So unlike a post on Facebook, unless they interact with it, then you don’t know who’s watched it but with stories, it shows you exactly who has seen your content. So it’s a really powerful tool. And again, if you’re consistent with it, if you do it every single day, over the course of the next weeks, it will stand you in great stead for when the upturn comes about.
Email marketing content
Let’s move on over to email marketing. And again, email marketing is another fantastic free tool with social media. There are so many distractions when your post is when you put your post, your post could get lost within a hundreds of other Facebook business pages that are trying to get your attention. Now the beauty of an email is that when an email comes into the inbox, when they click and open up your email, then its focus is just on you. The reason why so many people don’t do email marketing is because they associate it with sleazy or scammy or they just think about the emails that are in their inbox right now. And probably 90% of them. Just look, sleazy sales is scummy. The trick is here is to do what everybody else isn’t. And base your email and try and give them a story. Don’t try and sell but be communicative. It’s easy for me to say try and write your emails like You’re right into a long locks pen pap. And again at times like this, if you can send an email to somebody, whether it’s a past guest or somebody that has signed up to your email list and hasn’t yet book and if you can do it once a week, and this is my thing with emails is once a week, then again, you’re going to be top of mind for when people are ready to book.
This is why these big, big, big brands that they do the radio ads, they spend so much money on TV ads, they spend so much money on Google ads and social media ads and billboards. It’s because when you walk into a shop, and you’ve got all of these options in front of them, they are banking on all of the advertising that they’ve done for when you walk into the shop and they see their brand name or when you see their brand name are going to go up. So it’s brand recognition. And again, we don’t have to go to the levels of spending thousands on TV ads and radio ads and billboard ads and Facebook ads. All we need to really be focusing on is emails and social media. I pretty much guarantee you You’d be ahead of about 89 to 90% of everybody else out there. And again, it number one, sign up to MailChimp, or send Fox to totally free bits of software. If you haven’t yet got started with email marketing, create your account, create your list, and then you’ll get a sign up link. And all you need to do is put a post up on social media and just say, who would like to get weekly emails from us, we’ll be sending recipes, we’ll be posting updates from our property or you know, x, y and Zed here’s the link to sign up.
Blog content ideas
Now you may only get one person, don’t discredit that one person utilize the chance that you’ve got such a small list that you can pretty much check to that one person weekly emails, give them updates. And every time you send an email, you just put in it saying if you know anybody that would like to get our emails, share our list with them. And again, they can just forward the email on and then they can sign up from there and the power of Do you know anybody is so powerful and again, if you keep on doing that once a week and you do it over the course The next say 12 weeks save. But if this goes on for another 12 weeks and other free months, then you’re going to have so many more people that have got eyes on your business that weren’t there before.
I do want to caveat all of this and say that it’s super important when you come to write your emails or when you come to do your social media posts or, you know, when you come to write any form of content that you’ve got to have your customer avatar in mind. So again, we’ve done social media, we’ve done videos within social media, we’ve done final one I just quickly mentioned on it there is blogging. blogging, again, is a really powerful tool. And I recommend to do this at least once a month. So with a blog, again, when you post on social media, it’s fantastic. But that is just benefit in the channel that you are posting on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, when you do emails is again it’s fantastic, but it’s just going to one person but when you do a blog, it has so many additional benefits, ie your website, getting it seemed more visible on the search engines and again, there has been So many fantastic examples of people that do blogging regular and when I say regular least once a month where they have started to become a lot more visible on a Google search being search or wherever, whatever search engine that you use but again please make sure that you write and you talk around your customer avatar So again, I will put a blog together maybe about Dobby forest again what there is to do there and put in some links in there from for places to visit, how they can go booked their tickets, go ape and all of those sort of things.
Now out of all of the free I would say that blogging is the most time consuming then you’ve got email and in social media is the quickest or whatever our the free, but you’re going to choose I recommend with starting off with the most simplest and the most simplest is social media.
And again, if you’ve not posted at least once a day, over the past seven days on your Facebook business page on your LinkedIn or even Instagram then right now you are being left behind and this is one of The big things that I have noticed from the four years of me doing Boostly, the four years of being the admin of the hospitality community and sort of growing the website side of the business when I, when I do mock interviews, and I look back on social media, and I look back at what people have been posting, and the large majority of the time, people are lost and confused, and just stumped, when it comes to the content to create, they go the easy way out, or they just share a post from the local tourism or they didn’t, don’t do anything, because they just think I don’t know what to say.
But this is the most important time Do not go dark, make sure that you’re posting every day. So what I’ve done is I’ve been working on this for six to eight weeks now, this is perfect timing more than ever, because now we need to stay prevalent. We need to stay active, we need to keep on posting because more and more people are on their phones. They’re on the tablets, they’re on the computers, they’re on their social media.
Social Media Sorted
So you need to make sure that you’re at the forefront and what I’ve created for the world of hospitality is called Social Media Sorted. So what it means is that I’ve got an in house design and copy team that is going to create every single month 30 plus pieces of content. So every single day of the month, you are going to have an image and copy that you can simply copy, paste, and post onto Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram.
And what’s even cooler is that with Facebook business pages, you’ve got the ability to schedule a whole month in just one day, which is so cool. So you can schedule tomorrow being the first of April, your hormones have content within one hour. And that’s it, you don’t have to think about it again. There’s also scheduling platforms out there for Instagram, and LinkedIn. So again, you can get your whole month’s worth of content done in one to two hours and then you don’t even have to worry about all of the copy has been created by my team. So you just copy it, you paste it, you personalize it. you post it all of the images have been done in different style.
So we’ve got square and we’ve got vertical because obviously anybody who’s used Facebook stories or Instagram Stories knows that it’s got to be in a vertical mode. So again you can save it to your phone and then you can post it or and today I launched Social Media Sorted and it is only available exclusively to the book direct membership movement.
My membership platform is only 9.99 a month. I launched it today to all of the existing members and they are now logging in grabbing their images grabbing a copy and I’ve already seen it go in live on Instagram, I’ve seen it go on Facebook, I’ve seen it go in LinkedIn and it looks amazing. And the beauty of all of this is that you can join as well if you are struggling at content, if you are struggling with what to put out if you haven’t posted every day for the last seven days and you just want in a platform that will help this is what I recommend everybody check out.
We’ve obviously got posts about COVID-19 and but most importantly, we’ve got engaging content and finger dropping form stopping images that you can use you also get access to online training videos. So we’ve got hours and hours of content on how to get on all of the social media websites. You also get a listing on my book direct map book direct map.com we’ve got over 300 listings 300 users 300 hosts from all over the world are currently on there, you get listed on the book direct map.