How Vacation Rental Managers Can Utilize Social Media During a Crisis

March 31, 2020

When it comes to expecting the unexpected vacation rental managers are experts at developing new strategies to plan for almost any scenario. However, when it comes to global crisis and rapidly changing information it can be difficult to get your guests the information they need.

Utilizing Social media can be a powerful and effective way to keep your guests informed and provide peace of mind. Here are some tips on how to build a social strategy that can help you during difficult times.

  1. Decide What Information to Share.
    It is critical to keep your guests well informed of your organizations operational changes such as hours of operation, plans or policies, and any information that will answer their questions, concerns and needs right now. Providing relevant content that speaks directly to these considerations will ensure your social presence remains valuable. This may mean pausing current campaigns you are running to make room for new messaging.
  2. Move Forward With Empathy.
    During times of crisis you, your guests, and your staff are experiencing a full range of emotions. This is the time to lead with empathy and foster a sense of connection. By using this approach, you can position your company and brand as a supportive source of helpful content.
    This is the perfect time to reach out to team members that have direct communication with guests to find out what questions or concerns they are receiving daily or weekly. This will not only help you provide relevant content to your guests but could also aid your team in managing high call or email volume by placing the right messaging in an easily accessible place for guests.
  3. Use Social Insights
    It is easy to focus on what you want to say and miss out on what others are saying. Through social media channels you can look at your target audience analytics to find out what they are saying and what are top concerns. You can also look at what your competitors and lawmakers are saying. Search for keywords or hashtags to find examples from the industry to inspire your posts.
  4. Build Strategies You Can Duplicate
    Social media is an ideal tool in crisis situations because it is quick, direct, powerful and it is everywhere. Recent research tells us that 86% of consumers believe that transparency from businesses is more important that ever before. When building a crisis mode social strategy remember that whether you are solving for a global crisis or a company/brand crisis it is important to have a written plan with outlined procedures, established messaging and gain approvals as needed from leadership.
  5. Stay Flexible
    Despite all the planning it is important when launching your strategy to remain flexible. Your team should feel empowered to adjust messages as needed as long as they portray the ideals of the company. Also remember that while you can gather and report the analytics surrounding your efforts, at the end of the day social media is all about connecting with your audience and building relationships with your guest that can last for generations.

Planning can more often than not alleviate mental strain during times of crisis such as these. Open lines of communication will help you, your guests and your team weather any storm.