The Socialnomics Social Media Video 2013

For regular readers of my blog, you will know that each year I tend to post the latest Social Media Video produced by Socialnomics.  In my opinion, this annually produced video is one of the most powerful ways to explain the influence, reach and usage of social channels with some incredible and hard-hitting facts.  Socialnomics was founded by Erik Qualman with the intent of providing short social stories, statistics, studies and surprises.  I refer to these videos regularly and often share them with people asking me questions about why their hotel should be taking social media seriously.

So, with my thanks as always to Socialnomics, here’s the 2013 video. Enjoy.

Hilton celebrates 25 years of HHonors with giveaway and Facebook promotion

Yes, that’s right. One of the most famous and instantly recognisable hotel reward programmes that boasts some 30 million members is 25 years old today.  To celebrate, Hilton HHonors will be rewarding members throughout the next two months with a 25 million point giveaway and a sweepstake “25 days of Winning”.

Started in  1987, this has to be one of the oldest and longest running programmes of its kind.  I have a slight qualm with a lot of these reward schemes where rewards are hard to amass, however HHonors has always had a very fair reputation, so it’s fitting that Hilton are celebrating this milestone.

Through to 18th September, the 25 Million Point Giveaway will award one member each day with 1 million HHonors points, along with runner-up, instant-win prizes including HHonors points, gift cards and prize packages from Hilton Worldwide’s 10 hotel brands.  Hilton are taking the promotion onto their social channels too allowing members to enter daily prizes on the Hilton HHonors Facebook page.

The celebration continues with the 25 Days of Winning sweepstakes from October 1 to 25, 2012. Every day for 25 days, HHonors members will be encouraged to visit for a chance to win exceptional prizes, from a New Year’s Eve getaway to Times Square, New York to HHonors Diamond status for a year.

Jeff Diskin, Senior Vice President, Global Customer Marketing, Hilton Worldwide commented “As a company, it was always our goal to build an industry-leading loyalty program, but it’s because of our loyal members that Hilton HHonors has grown into the awarding-winning program it is today.  I am proud of the milestones we have surpassed over these 25 years and we look forward to continuing to earn the loyalty of frequent travelers.”

Here’s a plotted history of the long standard reward programme:

  • 1987: Program began as an “Instant Win” scratch-off promotion tied to U.S. Olympic Team sponsorship honoring Olympians past and present.
  • 1996: The word about Hilton HHonors spreads. The program reached its first million members.
  • 1997: Expanded to hotels within the Hilton Worldwide portfolio outside of the U.S.
  • 2001: Dedicated Diamond VIP Desk opened for HHonors Diamond members.
  • 2002: Hilton HHonors grew to 10 million members.
  • 2004: First Hilton HHonors online reward reservation took place.
  • 2006: Introduced Hilton HHonors Giving Back program, allowing members to donate their Hilton HHonors points to charitable organizations.
  • 2007: Announced Experience Rewards, allowing members to redeem points for a diverse range of lifestyle activities.
  • 2008: Became the only hotel guest loyalty program to offer members both Points & Miles® and No Blackout Dates. 20 million travelers enrolled in the program and learned about the ways to earn and redeem points through Hilton HHonors.
  • 2011: Launched a global rebranding initiative built on the platform “Hilton HHonors, A World of Experiences Worth Sharing” and introduced three new reward options for members, including Points and Money, Premium Room Rewards and Room Upgrade Rewards. Hilton HHonors celebrated 30 million HHonors members, surpassing previous membership records.

If you are a HHonors member, you can participate in the anniversary celebrations, by visiting for the 25 Million Point Giveaway and for the 25 Days of Winning sweepstakes.

What’s your favourite hotel loyalty programme and why?  Do you seem to collect card after card with no reward?  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic and any great examples you’ve seen of loyalty programmes and best practices that could be shared.

‘The Content Omniverse’ – check out this great Infographic

I found this great infographic this evening, recently published by CopyPress.  Take a look, it really does represent social content online very well.

Infographic courtesy of CopyPress.

Mark Zuckerberg rings the opening bell and signals the biggest shares sale in years

From Facebook’s HQ in California, CEO Mark Zuckerberg rang the opening bell for the Nasdaq this morning – signaling the most from high-profile share sale in years.

Accor launches A-Club Places application on Facebook

Some hotel chains are only just waking up to the fact that social media channels equal booking channels.  Some are only just realising it could be an idea not to just have a presence on Facebook, but to let clients book on Facebook.  Accor have been ahead in the game for a while now, and this week announced that they had the first location-based application to reward a hotel group’s loyalty program members.

Accor launched A-Club Places, an innovative and unique Facebook application, available to A-Club loyalty members.  The launch of this application is part of Accor’s strategy to develop its presence on the Internet, on mobile phones and social networks.  Sales through these direct distribution channels represent close to 29% of the Group’s total sales.

The new service allows members to check in on the application on Facebook and rewards customers with a badge depending on the regularity of their stay and on the type hotels the stay at which convert into A-Club points.

This just shows how hotels are having to develop their online presence in social circles even more carefully.  Its important to offer as much of your baseline service on as many channels as possible, and Accor have plugged the gap with their loyalty program.

The top Irish hotels getting social

Outside of Hotel Insight, my role in the hospitality industry allows me to get really involved in the Irish market, and for that reason, I was speaking with my friend Christina, the owner of CG Online Marketing based in Ireland, about her thoughts on hotels using social media in her primary market.  We had such a good conversation, that Christina offered to provide her insights into this area – so this post is courtesy of Christina!

Christina: “According to Failte Ireland’s visitor survey, everybody loves the Irish hospitality. In my mind, this means that the Irish charm and warm nature is perfect for social media – so here I’ve compiled a list of the top Irish hotel social media pages and campaigns and together we can you can judge if the Irish brand of hospitality translates as well online.

1)     First up is the Cliff House Hotel, Ardmore, Co Waterford

A stunning location on the south-east coast and close to Ardmore Bay, the Cliffhouse Hotel are lucky to have the ocean as a backdrop.

Twitter: @cliffhousehotel


These guys were born to tweet and never miss a chance to respond (great customer service).

Practically 4000 Twitter followers and high engagement levels. They have been known to tweet and serve simultaneously.

Their Facebook page is just as busy – plenty of pictures, updates and they even shared a few mentions on third party blogs – nice!

Not one question was left unanswered and the tone was consistently upbeat.

An encouraging start!

2)     Next we have, The Clanard Court Hotel, Athy, Co Kildare

Set on the outskirts of Dublin city, the Clanard Court is a popular local for those living in Athy.

Twitter: @ClanardCourt


Let’s look at their social media

This hotel set hearts aflutter with their ‘Love Match’ Facebook campaign to win a wedding

(the one of your dreams, of course).

The competition stages:

  • Couples upload their images
  • Four then progress to stage two
  • Each couple is filmed discussing their prospective partners
  • Fans had to guess the couples.
  • Winners crowned (Love match)

Full coverage here

What I loved about this campaign was the innovation and personalisation of it. Interactive, multimedia-driven (upload images and video interviews), personality (some cool questions like ‘What celebrity does your partner look most like?’) and the amount of time and commitment a campaign of this magnitude must have taken. This is more of a free-fall into social media, as opposed to a side-step and it is a testament to what social media can do for a hotel.

3)     In at 3 is The Maryborough Hotel, Douglas, Co. Cork

The Maryborough hotel (a client of mine, incidentally) is well-known for a warm and friendly service. They are constantly adding to the hotel (Pet Farm, Team Building and Dome) and are dedicated to their guests.

Twitter: @TheMaryborough


Let’s look at their social media

The Facebook page has personality! Sales carries this function and it’s updated almost daily – sometimes with offers, something with links, and sometimes a just a feel-good shout out.

You may not note the strategy at play, in fact you might be forgiven for thinking there isn’t one at all…but, there is! The updates are all goal-driven – Talking about Santa’s visit, buying Christmas vouchers, Spa offers, etc. Mostly, there’s a sales message at play, but it’s packaged behind an energetic and happy voice, so fans respond.

#leaders11 Have to say the Energy is just Electric here in the Sherrard Suite Tonight!!!’

Plus – they use #tags for tweets and create a nice buzz for their offerings.

There are countless hotels in Ireland worth a mention, like The Cork Airport Hotel – winner of a number of marketing awards and promoters of an edgy, creative vibe (vibrating seats  – need we say more?), plus The Burlington Hotel in Dublin where every status update gets a picture (for those not in the know – this increases your chances of being seen by your fans).


Christina is owner of CG Online Marketing ( and has ten years experience in online marketing communications from working with Premier Recruitment Group, LA Fitness, Monarch Airlines, Thomson Travel and a host of other companies. Christina is dedicated in providing unique online marketing solutions tailored to individual client needs, and ensuring that all online activities run smoothly and obtain the best ROI possible. Specialties:Online marketing Online media Social Media/Social Marketing SEO / PPC Google analytics (qualified in GA IQ) Web trends + insights, Data segmentation and targeting, Customer Behavior analysis, Digital design, Writing, Ethical marketing Green marketing / Sustainable tourism and Hotel + travel online marketing.


Your average day on Facebook [infographic]

I saw noticed this infographic today, created by Jess3 and posted on the Mashable website and wanted to share it with you as it represents very clearly the average day on Facebook, with some very interesting statistics.