Hi gang! I was reading this article, “Incidental Advocacy: The Easiest Path to Online Word of Mouth” by Gary Stein, and one part really stuck out to me:
“I booked a room recently at a New York hotel called the Park Central. It’s a good place, conveniently located, and at a good price. Once I had made the reservation, I got a page that offered me a chance to share my upcoming stay with my friends. In return, I would get a free drink at the bar. Of course, I’ve never been one to pass up a free drink, so I went ahead and clicked the button. A short tweet went out and in a minute I also got an email with a code – I brought that to the bar and voilà.
The engine behind this bit of genius is a company called Flip.to. It seems to specialize in the hospitality industry, servicing hotels, restaurants, and airlines. The great thing about this is that the tool connects directly to the registration system so that sending out a tweet is just a part of the purchase cycle. It seems as natural as saying that you want a room on a high floor.
And the brilliant thing is that a by-product of the tool is that the hotel now has a link between my hotel reservation and my Twitter handle. I haven’t spoken to this company, so I don’t know what it provides or what its strategy is. But I see this as a huge benefit for the hotel. It can now begin to follow me or at least browse through my tweets. Shoot, the hotel could point a crawler at my feed or simply look at my Klout score to see what exactly I’m interested in. It could then begin to either customize its service or provide me with highly relevant offers. I never had to tell the hotel that I was interested in any particular topic; it could simply learn that through my social media actions.
If you’re running a site that involves any kind of registration, you should be looking into a system like this or at least trying to implement some kind of step that will enable you to get connected to a person’s social media streams. In a world where personalized service commands such a high value, the ability to discover what a person is really interested in can be a great way to leap ahead and delight your customer.”
This is a great thought on 1) integrating social media into your website, 2) offering a tangible prize, but encouraging social sharing to do so and 3) encouraging users to socialize their story (in this case, where they are going for vacation). I encourage you to read the rest of the article and to get inspired!
Until next time!