Convention Services Managers (CSMs) and Convention and Visitor Bureaus (CVBs): They are a meeting professional’s right hand. They are event professionals’ co-pilots.
We need them. We love them. We can’t succeed without them.
They help provide the onsite scaffolding and structure of our events. Without them, our meetings would implode from the time we set foot on site.
While a majority of the business world has been undergoing a major shift in communications through social media, CSMs and CVBs are just now waking to the great transformation that has taken place.
Five Reasons and CVBs Should Use Social Media
Here are five reasons why CSMs and CVBs should use social media.
1. Tune in to what your customers want, need and expect.
Social media can serve as a great tool to give you insights into what your customers and clients want. Instead of emailing a questionnaire to your client, you can do intelligence research and discover some of the things that your client likes.
For example, wouldn’t you like to know if your customer drinks alcohol or not before you leave that amenity package in their room with a bottle of wine? If you are connected to your client in Facebook, you can probably figure out some of their likes and dislikes from their posts.
2. Increase your credibility.
Your potential customers are looking for your social footprint. Besides your venue or city website, can they find you online? Are you active in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or other social networks?
Your potential client is also looking to see if you are connected to anyone in their social networks. Can they see if any of their online connections have ever worked with you in the past?
If you don’t have an online presence, outside of your website, your absence speaks louder than you think. Your personal online presence serves as your online resume.
At a minimum, make sure you have a LinkedIn profile. Better yet, set your Facebook preferences so that the general public can see some of your information, especially as it relates to work. You can still keep parts of Facebook private to your family and friends.
3. Receive real time feedback.
What if you could listen in to what your client’s customers are thinking about the meeting? Would you? Sure you would.
Following a conference Twitter hashtag is a must for today’s CSMs, CVBs and hotels. Actually venues should include the following questions in their contracts:.
a. What is the Twitter hashtag for your event, if you have one?
b. What is the blog or website link for your event?
c. What is the link for your Facebook page or event if you have them?
4. Identify patterns and possible innovations.
If you are listening to the online chatter of your client’s customers, you may begin to see some patterns. You might also see some suggestions from customers on how to innovate or improve things.
5. Helping people reward themselves by being generous to others.
Many social media advocates have adopted the “Pay It Forward” movement. When you share information from your customers with others, you are showcasing that you believe in a purpose greater than yourself.
Here is the PPT from my presentation to ACOM recently, Social Media: Fad Or Revolution. Tips To Use This Tool To Enhance Your Service.
What are some other tips you have for hotels, convention service mangers and CVBs regarding social media?