Haines says that Facebook can become a platform for your own website, just as WordPress has. He argues that many businesses are turning to 3rd-party Web 2.0 apps and platforms, like Google Blogger and Yahoo Flickr, which are easier to set up than their own custom-built solutions. "Facebook interactions let companies tap into a wealth of customer information and a communication channel."
Facebook's targeting tools let hotels and tourism operators access specific demographics like "30-year-olds in London who like cricket and may want to travel to the World Series in Barbados", for example.
Other Facebook tools for Tourism include:
• Booking applications like http://facebook.arcres.biz
• Hotel content loads to Facebook pages with apps like the arcRes Publisher specials.arcres.biz
• Options to offer samples & specials to customers, again available with arcRes for Facebook.
• The ability to reach smartphone travelers for local check-ins. "Clothing retailer The Gap gave away 10,000 pairs of jeans to the first 10,000 customers to use the Facebook local check-in service, and Mazda sold 100 cars --exceeding expectations--with a 20-percent-off offer at five U.K. auto dealerships", Haines said.
• The ability to build e-commerce options into Facebook pages a-la-arcRes, which let travelers see best rates for Fans and book rooms, cars and tours without leaving the Facebook page.
• Advertising to target groups that change many times a day to send a sequence of ad messages to Facebook users.
• Surveys that let tourism companies engage customers in company decisions. VitaminWater used voting, among other mechanisms, to generate 1.3 million "connections" with possible customers during its "Find a New Flavor" marketing campaign.
• Many Applications built atop Facebook's interface that let companies create custom-made interactive programs.
Facebook is also experimenting with new ideas. One is "News Feed Story Ads," in which hotel specials and news can be displayed as advertisements. Also "Application Social Context Ads," where the app shows which contacts are also using the app.
He also warns that it's a "long-term commitment to keep a site on Facebook lively". And balance that with not annoying them with too many updated. Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-30685_3-20038242-264.html#ixzz1FjJH9Lqx
Load you Brand content, Fan Specials and Bookings on your Facebook page now with arcRes Publishing.
arcRes loads and manages rooms, photos, rates and bookings on Facebook direct from arcRes Publisher. arcRes Publisher also manages and markets your brand to 100s of sites and can be used as your own "branded booking engine": http://arcres.com/upgrade