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johnbourne4



Joined: 10 Jun 2013
Posts: 12
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 9:11 am    Post subject: Facebook Reply with quote

I don't post much on LMH as I'm a relative newbie (3 years trading) and don't feel that I have much to give to the forum, but I would like to share this experience. I'm a bit of an anologue person living in a digital age. I've always been of the opinion that there isn't much point bothering with Facebook as its something that needs a lot of effort every week to produce very little results. My son has just started uni doing business studies so he has been telling me we should do something with Facebook. I've let him handle things and we've spent a little bit of money (25) on promotion. We've also listed a winter offer giving a discount for Jan and Feb (something we've done in the past through other channels that has eventually produced full price bookings at other times of the year).
The Facebook listing has been going for less than a week. We have had about 10 proper likes (i.e. not friends and family) and one enquiry this morning about the winter offer.
I think it's time for me to get my head out of the sand and drag myself into the 21st century!
How effective do other members find Facebook, in terms of the time they need to put into it?
Cheers John
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johnbourne4



Joined: 10 Jun 2013
Posts: 12
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 9:20 am    Post subject: FB Reply with quote

P.s my son tells me we've only spent 6.30 out of the 25 so far.
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Ben McNevis



Joined: 15 May 2006
Posts: 819
Location: Scotland (for) The Brave

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you'll find that most of us are in the dark ages as far as Facebook is concerned (or maybe it's just me!).

What I would like to see is a "how to" document written by someone who has actually had some success with it.

I've had a Facebook account for some years. Loads of "friends" that I haven't a clue who they are or why they have appeared there. I set up a page for one of our houses and it seems to get about 2 views per week, but nothing that I can call a result. I know I need to do more but am clueless!
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Cheers, Ben
www . scotland-cottage.com www . scottish-cottage.com
www . learntotype.com/hrd Holiday Rentals Desk software

Visiting Glenrothes? It's one of your Fife-a-day
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mmg



Joined: 04 May 2016
Posts: 59
Location: Co Donegal, Ireland

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Karen Spencer of The Business of Holiday Rental has a facebook masterclass for holiday home owners, it's free to download until 31 January, available from her website or facebook page.

I'm not at all tech savvy, but have had some success with facebook: several bookings in 2015, including a two week peak season booking, some enquiries last year but had no availability and I linked my website to facebook last year so some of the enquiries from my website may have originated on facebook.

I post some of my own photos/videos/offers and share posts from local attractions/events, restaurants etc. I find it a useful way to keep in touch with past guests as well as letting potential guests know more about the area.

It can be time consuming, but you can choose how much time you want to spend, it's possible to spend 30 mins scheduling posts for the week and then just checking in when you have a spare moment to respond to or acknowledge interactions on your page. I see the time I spend on facebook as an investment - I have never paid to boost a post, it is 'free' advertising as all it costs is my time.
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nealh



Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 109
Location: Cyprus

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mmg wrote:
Karen Spencer of The Business of Holiday Rental has a facebook masterclass for holiday home owners, it's free to download until 31 January, available from her website or facebook page.

I had a look at this... ideal if you want the basics and to be pointed in the right direction. Be prepared to listen a couple of times though as she tends to ramble through what is in her head rather than having a clear progression in what she shows - just my opinion, others may like her style.

I am a relative newcomer to FB; if it wasn't for the holiday rental page I wouldn't bother with it. That said it has been interesting, in a nerdy sort of way, to see how the reach increases as more people like the page, comment etc. I do feel at times like a spider sitting in the middle of my ever increasing web waiting for my prey Very Happy

If you can invest the time it is worthwhile... the potential to get a booking, another way of confirming you are legit, keeping your rental in the minds of past visitors are all benefits that spring to mind.
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Fleur



Joined: 25 Jan 2011
Posts: 403
Location: S.W. France

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mmg I too post new pictures and updates on our house Facebook page. I've noticed that past guests look and"like" the new pictures.

The other bonus is that on our website we mention our FB page and tell people there are loads more pictures to look at on FB.
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johnbourne4



Joined: 10 Jun 2013
Posts: 12
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2017 4:34 pm    Post subject: Facebook Reply with quote

Thanks to everyone for the help, I think I'm going to have to try to allocate some time to learn more about Facebook. Best regards, John
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Jay GHC



Joined: 07 Dec 2016
Posts: 11
Location: Bridgerule, near Bude

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've paid for a couple of adverts on facebook and had limited success.

The benefit of paying (known as "boosting") a facebook post is that it reaches people who probably wouldn't have heard of your company before and can attract new business. Whereas posting something without boosting will only reach people who already like your business. You can also target who your post reaches, i.e gender, location and even hobbies.

Although appealing for more people to like my page and comment / share posts is always good, my aim was to get people on to my website and make an enquiry.

So far I've boosted 2 posts and paid for one ad:

My first boost was for 25 over 10 days before Christmas with an offer on all 2017 bookings. It reached 13,500 people and 1,900 engagements but only 16 people clicking on the link to my website and bottom line, no bookings.

After Christmas I created a second post with more pictures and clearly telling viewers to visit my website and made the link prominent. I boosted it for 50 and only had it going for 2 days (after reading some advice online) so that it would reach to a lot of people very quickly. This reached 27,600 people with 3,462 engagements, but only 137 people actually going on my website and still 0 bookings.

I saw afterwards that Facebook offer adverts that target potential customers to go to your website, so I paid another 50 for the ad over 2 days. Before paying for the ad Facebook estimated it would reach between 18,000 and 25,000 people. However, sadly it only reached 5,700 people and I only got 116 people going on my website and bottom line you guessed it... No bookings.

So I'm 125 down so far, but have learnt that it's much better to boost your own post than to run an advert with Facebook. I'll keep trying, it just takes one booking for me to get the money back and I'm getting more people liking my page which is good.

But I do think these ads are best used at this time of year when a lot of people are booking holidays.

Anyway sorry for rambling. Good luck with the campaign, let us know how well it does!
Jay
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russellt



Joined: 09 Dec 2014
Posts: 332
Location: Ivybridge, Devon, UK

PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2017 9:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks @Jay GHC. This is the sort of real world reality of FB advertising that many of us need to hear before we commit the time & effort.

Makes me think that my time commitment to personal blog:FB ratio should be around 75:25. Maybe even 80:20.
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Web: http://www.esmescottage.co.uk
Twitter/Facebook/Instagram: @esmescottage

An owner community-led, direct booking alternative to the OTA: https://www.holidayviewsdirect.com , Sign-up and get involved!
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arkvilla



Joined: 14 May 2012
Posts: 271
Location: Highgate Park, Florida (the Villa) we live in Essex, UK

PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't pay to advertise and I get the majority of my bookings from FB and my page is kept up to date and I interact with past and future guests on there

Some are repeats but they 'know' me now due to them adding me on FB and interacting and sharing my page posts, my page is well liked with around 2030 'Likes'

Orlando is a different market to many places in that people book ahead as it is often a holiday of a lifetime, I have 25 weeks booked for 2018, people fall in love with Orlando and keep going back, they are my repeats Very Happy

Sandra
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Sandra

http://www.arkvilla.com

https://www.facebook.com/Arkvilla

https://plus.google.com/u/0/+Arkvilla/posts
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Jay GHC



Joined: 07 Dec 2016
Posts: 11
Location: Bridgerule, near Bude

PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 10:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Russle, good luck with the campaigning. I agree that blogging is a good use of time.

That's interesting Arkvilla.

How did you get 2000+ likes without advertising?

Jay
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Essar



Joined: 12 Jun 2011
Posts: 3244
Location: Bournemouth

PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 11:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have just boosted a "Book Now" post with my website link.


It has now finished and resulted in the following remarkable outcome:-

Duration: 7-days
Daily budget: 50
Total cost: 350
United Kingdom - both sexes - 30 to 65 age groups

Impressions: 288,567
Demographic: 89.52% Women - 56.23% 44-55 age group
Clicks to website: 15,567
Peak: 66 concurrent searches
New visitors: 93.22%
Page views: 48,258
Book Now button hits: 885
Post likes: 645
Page likes: 189 (starting from a measly 32)
Shared posts: 711

Enquiries: 181
These included emails and chat messages as well as 15 fb messages. The majority were on-line enquiries through the freetobook pages. All the bookings were follow throughs of this system and therefore directly attributable to the campaign.

Bookings: 8 (5 for the apt & 3 for the house)
Value 4125.00

I have never been an advocate of fb and I still can't see the real point of walking around with your head in your phone textering your mates about the kardashians.

However, this result is remarkable and I will do the same thing again in about 6-weeks. The cost works out as the equivalent of a 8.5% commission.

The other remarkable outcome was that a staggering number of mobile users through this social medium:

Mobile: 55.94%
Tablet: 38.72%
Desktop: 5.35%

I am pleased that I put a great deal of time and effort in having a flexible website with mobile, tablet and desktop versions. I am still tweaking the mobile site specifically because of the outcome.

Furthermore, even though the campaign is over and the website visits have dropped back, it has not dropped back to the pre-campaign levels. There are still many returnees from the campaign, particularly, those from shared posts.
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"Write something, even if it's just a suicide note"
"There is no human problem which could not be solved if people would simply do as I advise"
"As for my amnesia, I've had it as long as I can remember"
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rosebud



Joined: 14 Mar 2012
Posts: 498
Location: Steyning, West Sussex

PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So impressive Arkvilla and very interesting Essar.. Great results..

I post about 5 times a week with the identical post going onto Facebook, Twitter and GooglePlus.

My 'reach' on Facebook is generally between 30 and 40 - sometimes over 100.. although I am not sure of the significance of those figures!

So far no bookings that I know of ...

I have one past guest who plans to return and often likes my posts..
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COYS



Joined: 06 Jun 2015
Posts: 659
Location: Greek Islands

PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a decent return Essar.
As a FB novice & not a personal user, I've often wondered about reach statistics. Do they just plonk your post onto the profiles of random people in a chosen demographic & then you hope for the best?
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This time next year Rodney, we'll be millionaires.
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Essar



Joined: 12 Jun 2011
Posts: 3244
Location: Bournemouth

PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 8:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can be specific down to regions or countries, sexes, age ranges and interests. I find being to clever with the specifics limits the results.

I just went for UK, both sexes, but kept to the 30+ age ranges. Mainly, because I don't want younger guests.

I have always known - without real evidence - that the majority of enquiries and bookings come through the maternal line of the planets human occupants. Next time I will limit the range to just the girls over 30; they have the parents to bring along on holiday to look after the sprogs; all lovely jubbly for me. They are the ones that are looking for the next trip on their mobile whilst waiting for the kids at the school gates.

My biggest shock was the sheer numbers of users of fb that use mobile phones and tablets to search for their trips. Out of the top ten devices, nine are Apple products; iPhones & iPads of various designation, although, the Galaxy S6 did come out second overall.
_________________
"Write something, even if it's just a suicide note"
"There is no human problem which could not be solved if people would simply do as I advise"
"As for my amnesia, I've had it as long as I can remember"
Real name: Steve
Gender: Male
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