How Tour and Travel Businesses Can Set Themselves Apart with Social Media

<alt=map of the world"/>

Just when you thought that online marketing couldn’t become more diversified, along comes social media to ruin it for you. Fortunately though, unlike the technical world of SEO, SEM, and media buying, social media is one place where you can roll up your sleeves and have some fun marketing your travel and tour company.

Did you know…

  • Only 25% of travel companies actually bother to engage with their online audience, but…
  • 85% of travelers in the US and UK actively use online resources to plan their travel, and…
  • 40% of travelers use social media to be inspired to travel while 42% actually use it during the planning process, finally…
  • Over 50% of travelers trust reviews from friends and family over third-party recommendations.

This means that there is a massive opportunity for you to pull your brand ahead of the crowd and firmly establish it in the minds of your customers, and there just isn’t a better way to do so than with social media.

Be Social or Be Left Out

Sites like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube allow travel customers to share their experiences, and this has a big impact on those whom they are associated with. Ensuring that your customers are following you on these sites means you not only remain in contact with them and increase the chances of a repeat purchase, but also reach out to their friends and family who are more than likely to trust their suggestions.

First, make sure that you have a proper, professional social media profile set up. Have your Facebook fanpage, Twitter profile, Pinterest accounts personalized with your logo and any images that you deem fit.

Next, integrate social technology to your website. Add Facebook Like and Share buttons from Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest to your site’s pages. This allows users to immediately share things they like to their preferred social media without needing to copy and paste links.

Don’t Forget the Newcomers

Speaking of Pinterest and Instagram, DO NOT ignore these channels. Tour and travel business and social media are a match made in heaven because pictures and videos of holiday destinations have a huge share value.

One effective way to supercharge your social media presence is to post beautiful photos of holiday destinations you cater to on Pinterest with a link back to your Facebook fanpage or Google+ account (and of course, your site, too).

As your pictures get shared, they will not only add followers to your presence on Pinterest and Instagram, but to your fanpage and Google+ accounts. The wisdom being, people who are on these two sites most likely use Facebook and Google+ — so having them follow you on more than one channel means greater brand awareness.

Go Viral with Contests

Lastly, be sure to adopt creative marketing strategies from time to time. Nothing gets a person’s attention better than the prospect of getting something for free.

So throw a contest or sweepstakes on Facebook and let everyone know about it. You don’t (necessarily) have to give away a free holiday for two; a simple discount, a gift certificate, or even a memento will suffice.

Contests can be as simple as asking your fans to post an image of a recent place they’ve traveled to. You can create a Facebook landing page using the Wildfire App where your fans can post their photos. The picture with the greatest number likes, shares, and comments will win your prize. The idea here is to engage your fan’s friends and followers, too, and get them to follow you.

Love this article? Join the conversation on Twitter! 

Image: Pontus Edenberg 

Leave a Reply