The hospitality industry quickly warmed to the idea of doing business online. It’s not uncommon for hotels to integrate TripAdvisor property reviews via their websites or see hoteliers respond to customers on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media sites in real time. While it’s impossible to monitor all online channels at once, it is important for hoteliers to recognize the channels that most customers interact with.

The increased use of mobile devices has changed the marketing landscape and enabled users to share stories/experiences with a new kind of word-of-mouth reach marketers could only dream about years ago. Most properties wouldn’t think about establishing a presence on a site like Reddit, but that’s okay—customers are already there. It is now possible for someone with a large following on Instagram to share what is deemed a more genuine experience than professionally shot photos. Independent travel bloggers have the power to guide their followers’ experiences with each entry. Analyzing this data to see how to better serve customers is more important than ever.

Looking at Instagram:

  •  Users are 40 times more engaged with brands than Twitter users and 20 times more engaged than Facebook users.
  • 26% of users access the app several times a day.
  • 48% of men using social media, and 56% of women, have shared a photo they have taken of themselves via social media; Instagram features prominently into those numbers.

It’s evident that social sharing is here to stay. Properties that know how guests are sharing content about their brands are in the best position to enhance a customer’s experience. Sabre Lab’s Hotel Snaps analyzes user data to let hoteliers know how people are sharing their images and experiences online.

Now hoteliers can know that men check in to properties via social apps more than women (64% to 36%). On-site bars are the most popular locations for check ins—and guest rooms are the most photographed locations accompanying check ins. With 60% of millennials (vs. 29% of non-millennials) uploading videos, images, and blog entries to the web, these numbers will only increase in the future. It is more important than ever to know where, when, and how guests are sharing experiences about their stay online to give properties a competitive edge.

The message is clear: while we can’t have a positive voice on every site online, if we do our jobs well, others will speak up for us. Hotels that know how customers are sharing content about properties are in the best position to meet customer expectations, but accurate data is vital to better server customers’ needs. Sabre Labs is committed to developing apps that make gathering that data easier than ever.