How Four Seasons Hotels Use Twitter

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Four Seasons Hotel has showed that businesses should use twitter. I love to follow stories on how companies are integrating twitter or social media in their businesses. I wanted to cover this story earlier but @dannybrown did an amazing job covering this story in his blog post Four Seasons Hotel and the Art of Social Media. So I am going to concentrate more on how four seasons hotel is using twitter in their marketing.

@BrianSolis talks about this in his book Engage. When you open his book he has a big funky font saying

This quote fits well with Four Seasons Hotel and their main twitter account at @FourSeasons and 50 other localized account because they listen on twitter. Most probably they will be reading this blog post as they keep an eye on their keywords so that they know what people are talking about their brand and they can communicate back.

How Four Seasons Hotel Is Using Twitter

1. Main Account and Localized Account

As you notice @fourseasons have a main account and then separated with their localized account. The reason behind this is because all the hotels are different or has its own unique property and they use the localized accounts to be more personal to their customers and concentrate on promoting more using their main account.

With the localized twitter account it is not so messy compare to using one twitter account and sending tons of tweets with that account.

2. Spying

@fourseasons are actually spying on keywords or what people are talking about their brand. Whether it is good or bad.

Facts: When someone is happy about something they tell 3 people

When someone in unhappy about something they tell 10 people

@loic mention this before that he prefer if someone is talking bad about his brand than not talking about his brand at all.

@Fourseasons are actually tracking tons of different keywords. They even took action when a customer complained on twitter about something.

3. Engage

Yes! they reply to most of the questions or inquiries people send to them using their localized twitter account or main account depending on the question or tweet.

Here is a testimonial from one of their customers

I think every companies should reply their customers when they can. They can use cotweet to reply their customers quickly.

4. Promotion

Like all businesses, it is never going to complete without the promotions. What @fourseasons tweet are promotions of their

  • Chef/Restaurant
  • Bar
  • Spa

They also do a lot of testing to see what works and what doesn’t.

5 Welcome Customers

This is why @fourseasons have 50 localized twitter account. They use them to welcome their customers who send a tweet to that account. Below is an example.

6. Events

@FourSeasons also tweet about events such as their upcoming Fund Raising.

Saturday, June 12 is the Four Seasons Hotel Boston Run of Hope in Partnership with the David Ortiz Children’s Fund. A run-walk to benefit pediatric cancer care and research at the Massachusetts General Hospital for Children and the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center. <more info>

Besides this they also have tweetups. Which is a great idea because it builds relationship.

How Four Seasons Hotel Can Improve?

Well they don’t really need to improve much because they are doing very well but here are my suggestions.

1. Welcome their customers more.

I used to follow their twitter account a lot because I was “spying” on what they were doing. @FourSeasons localized accounts used to welcome their customers who tweet that they were at a particular Four Seasons Hotel or that they just reached.

With foursquare people are checking in and some of them automatically post a tweet to twitter. I think that @fourseasons should welcome their customers more. Moreover those who checks in to @fourseasons usually have a twitter account.

2. Have localized twitter account printed welcome cards in rooms or brochures

I don’t think all customers will know about four seasons twitter account. So by printing them on the hotel cards to welcome customers when they reach their rooms or brochures, customers can tweet if they are happy or unhappy about their services straight to them.

3. Twitter Promotion

I think @fourseasons should have their own twitter promotion for those who are following them on twitter. It makes their followers feel good or appreciated (and get more followers at the same time)

4. Don’t protect tweets

I am not sure why they protect some of their account tweets but I am sure there is a reason to it… or not..

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  • http://dannybrown.me Danny Brown

    Hey there Aaron,

    Great follow-up post! :)

    These are some great suggestions you make at the end as well. I think we can tend to forget that not everyone's into social media as we are, and assume that folks will think to look for profiles of their brands online. Yet it's not always the case; and something as simple as a social media guest card would make a big difference.

    Cheers!

  • askaaronlee

    Hey there Danny,

    Thank you for the compliment Danny, I appreciate it a lot.
    Indeed, we shouldn't overlook that everyone uses social media or know about their existence.
    Four Seasons can even print them on their hotel keys too =D
    Cheers.

  • glitterglitzer

    Great post Aaron I never knew they took Twitter this serious! Well done Four Seasons Hotels! Hugs Mirijam!
    PS: @Swissotel is not so top ey? (^_^)

  • http://stores.ebay.com/ModelSupplies ModelSupplies

    Excellent work, Aaron! I completely agree about the protected accounts. It is probably not intended to be (by anyone), but a protected account is off-putting and in marketing that could be misconstrued in endless ways. I would either change those account names if the accounts must be protected or simply unprotect them =)

    Anita @ModelSupplies

  • askaaronlee

    Thanks Mirijam,
    @Swissotel can improve, I am not sure about them now though.

  • askaaronlee

    Thank you Anita,
    I would simply unprotect them as well, protecting them is a turn off moreover the tweets won't go through the twitter search.

  • Cherry Kam

    Thanks for the review, Aaron. You are correct, we are monitoring and read your blog post :-) Really appreciate your suggestions; there's so much to learn. — Cherry Kam, Director, Interactive Marketing, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts

  • askaaronlee

    Thank you Cherry,
    It is an honor to have you posting a comment on my blog =)

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  • @TravelDesigned

    There is just one thing that annoys me about @fourseasons, they will dm you but because they are not following you, you can't reply!

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron Lee

    Yes, I noticed that but if I'm not mistaken they usually follow with the local account =D

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  • http://www.smartblogs.com/socialmedia Rob Birgfeld

    Sorry I'm late to the chat here, but I just stumbled upon this. Here's a great example of Four Seasons in action. Read my gripe blog post– and check out the update:
    http://smartblogs.com/socialmedia/2009/07/20/pa

    I have yet to take advantage of the offer they gave me– but I was supremely impressed.

  • http://twitter.com/VegasBill Vegas Bill ♠

    I find it odd that their main account responds via direct message for thanks or most all accounts that don't originate from Four Seasons, for instance @FSSantaBarbara. Currently 8/27, going back seven days, there isn't a single @ to any regular twitter users. There are seven RTs of their own corporation and all of the rest are promotional material. This looks like an outside PR idea of 'engagement?' The topper is they only follow 88 out of 13,233 or .006 percent of their total following.

    Please don't tell me that they have to ask corporate to approve the sentiment and tweets that are produced. That's not going to fly in current social media.

    Main Four Seasons Hotel Twitter Account
    1. No outside engagement
    2. All promotional material
    3. Not listening to customers
    4. Hoping since they are using Hootsuite that they aren't using automated tweets.
    5. Not embracing brand evangelists

    I say they should learn from other accounts for instance @FSBoraBora on how to interact with users and create a personal connection. This is the start to becoming 'social' on social media.

  • Merry Hsueh

    Dear VegasBill,
    Thank you for your feedback. Social media is evolving and we will continue to look for ways to refine our presence to build trust and connections with our guests and customers. While the @FourSeasons account focuses on providing global news and updates, we do encourage engagement directly with our hotels as they are the local experts!
    Merry Hsueh, Interactive Marketing, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts

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  • http://socialhospitality.com Debbie Miller

    Great post, Aaron! Love how Four Seasons has the one main account and then all the localized accounts as well to break down the audience more specifically. Your improvement tips were also great. I recently stayed at a hotel in Scottsdale where they had a flyer on the guestroom desk encouraging visitors to “get social” as it listed all their social media channels. I really took note and, as a guest, thought very highly of their pro-active outreach.

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  • Anonymous

    While a lot of companies deal with a Twitter account or a Facebook fan page when it comes to social media outlets Four Seasons which he also adds more power to him.

    Hotel Gramado

  • Anonymous

    I absolutely accede about the adequate accounts. It is apparently not advised to be but a adequate annual is black and in business that could be misconstrued in amaranthine ways.

  • http://www.familyfreshcooking.com/ marla

    The Four Seasons is a wonderful hotel chain for so many reasons and it is wonderful that they are so engaged in social media. I would like to work more with them in the future.

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