In today’s digital age, content marketing is an essential tool to have in your overall marketing strategy; this is especially true for travel and tourism brands. Keeping your website up to date with the latest travel news, destination guides, travel tips and advice will help keep your travel brand visible in the search engines and top-of-mind when consumers’ are ready to book their next trip.
When devising your travel content marketing strategy, consider every step in the travel process from destination inspiration to booking flights, ferries, coaches, accommodation, knowing the best places to eat and drink and the local events that will be taking place. Think about how you can create content that your target audience will be searching for and will provide them with the inspiration and information they require.
Let’s take a look at some of the content marketing best practices travel and tourism brands should consider to deliver a successful content marketing campaign.
Good planning is key
Without planning your content marketing campaign is likely to fail, to ensure that you get a great ROI from your content marketing it is good practice to adopt an integrated process. What we mean by this is that every step of your content marketing from identifying your audience, planning and creating content to publishing, promoting, optimising and measuring analytics should all be part of the same process and be working toward the same objectives.
Devising a clear strategy that outlines what needs to happen, when it needs to happen and how it’s going to happen is essential for a successful campaign.
Understand your audience and listen to them
As consumers when we feel that a brand understands us we connect with them and are more likely to trust them; when we trust a brand we are more likely to convert into a loyal customer. As part of your content marketing strategy it is vital that you identify and understand your target audience.
Listening to your audience will help you understand what they are looking for and the pain points they are experiencing. Developing a customer persona will help you to create content that is valuable, relevant, informative and provides a solution to your audience’s problems.
Different types of content
Think about the types of content you will include and the objectives you want to achieve and what that outcome could mean for your brand. For example, if one of your objectives is to drive bookings to a specified location, think about the types of content you could create to raise awareness and increase interest in that location such as, destination guides, best hotels, where to eat and drink, top 5 local attraction and events and advice guides on differences in culture and language. In addition to articles consider using video content and infographics as part of your content marketing strategy.
User generated content is vital for travel brands and can be more powerful and trusted than what brands say. Sharing user generated content can inspire potential customers and can help build trust in your brand and keep you top-of-mind. Turn your customers into brand ambassadors by asking them to share their pictures, stories and recommendations on your social media channels. Sharing user generated content is a great form of word of mouth marketing and can lead to an increase in engagement and help to raise awareness.
When creating your content think about the lifespan of the content and identify whether it is for a long term campaign or a short seasonal campaign. Short lifespan content is content that is time specific, such as ‘Family days out in London this August’. Creating content that has a short lifespan but is designed to drive traffic and raise awareness to a seasonal campaign can deliver great results and is a practice that is regularly adopted by travel brands. Creating content with a short lifespan can add a sense of urgency for the audience to take the desired call to action.
Promoting your content will ensure that your content is seen by your target audience, using multiple channels such as social media marketing, PPC and social advertising will help you deliver your content to your target audience. In addition to these practices, think about working with travel bloggers, journalists and social influencers to get your content in front of a wider audience.
Using influencers to help you create content will lead to an increase in shares, engagement and reach and will add authority and credibility to your content making your brand one that customers can trust.
Supplement your existing content
As a travel brand your website is likely to contain a plethora of useful and informative information about your destination. Creating content about a particular upcoming festival or event in your destination can drive interest in your destination and is a great way to complement the content you already have.
Creating content that inspires people to discover your core website content in more detail can lead to a deeper and more engaging experience for your audience. Creating a story about a unique event can drive people to the destinations site and create an ‘aha’ moment when they realise how fascinating the destination is and will result in an increase in interest.
If you would like to discuss content marketing for your travel brand or how we can help with your digital marketing, get in touch.