3 Social Media Facts Spa Managers Need To Know with Norm Bond
Moontide Consulting (MC) caught up with Norm Bond (NB) in Bangkok, Thailand and asked for his insights on the global spa industry and social media. We wanted to see if he could give us three social media facts that managers in the global spa industry need to know. Bond is widely recognized as an international authority on marketing. He’s also the author of “Web Traffic Decoded” and a frequent media guest having appeared on CNN, Reuters, FOX News, National Public Radio (NPR), Business Week, and Black Enterprise Magazine.
So give a read and enjoy our exchange below.
MC: Social media (SM) is all I read about now. It’s everywhere. But if I’m a spa manager do I need to be concerned? Isn’t this a senior management area?
NB: Social media is an integral part of an entire organization. From the senior manager to the entry level employee to the front desk person. Because the nature of social media today is that everybody can be touched by it.
Let’s say that senior management invests hundreds of thousands of dollars into an excellent marketing program involving social media. They meet with public relations and the CFO and get all these things in place. Then the campaign rolls out and the clients arrive at the individual spa locations. If their first interaction is with that receptionist, who’s not plugged in to the social media plan which was set up exclusively at those senior levels, then everything will fall apart at that basic level. Client has a negative experience and reveals a communications silo.
Everyone, whether you’re middle management, an individual manager of a single location or district manager of multiple locations, must be integrated into the role of social media in order for the plan to be effective.
NB: People sending out tweets on your behalf has been the cause of some of the greatest errors in social media. Whether it’s the spa industry, not-for-profit organization, public corporation, or an assistant tweeting on behalf of an A-list celebrity we’ve all seen some epic fails.
The thing about social media is that it has to be strategic and not minimized. It should be part of a clearly defined campaign. As a manager, ideally you want to do it yourself to minimize losing “your voice”. You never want to delegate it or simply say “OK, intern, here’s our e-mail address, here’s our log in information, now start tweeting for the spa.” Because if that person jumps on and tweets out an improper link or thinks that they’re on their personal Twitter page and blasts out a message that goes to 2,000-3,000 clients and followers of your spa it can blow out your company’s whole public relations effort and campaign.
MC: I hear you. So ownership and response are very important.
NB: Response to the customer is extremely important. One of the ways success is measured in social media is by engagement. If someone is tweeting a question because they’re either at your spa location or thinking about visiting your location or even at a competitor’s location, the whole point is they’re now engaging with your brand. If you don’t acknowledge them, they may tweet to some other spa that’s more responsive and values their input. That’s the sound of you losing business.
The other thing that can happen is that there are a lot of savvy social media users who actually monitor Twitter for certain keywords related to spa. So if someone tweets “I’m looking for a massage” or “What are your facial rates”, there are smart competitors who won’t hesitate to jump in. They may say, “Hey Mary, I heard that you’re looking for a facial. We’ve got great deals this week”. They can virtually steal your customer away even though that person was not engaging directly with them.
MC: Are you kidding me? I had no idea! Thank you Norm.
NB: My pleasure. Thanks for letting me share a few tips with your audience on how spa managers can begin to get it right with social media. Also your readers can visit my site at www.NormBondMarkets.com for more info on social media, SEO and mobile.