Do you have a lead generation strategy for your travel business?
It’s so easy to rely on OTAs or agencies for sales, but after more than a year of ‘downtime,’ getting the most from every possible sales channel is going to be a top priority.
To help travel businesses and tour operators succeed in this respect, we’ve taken the time to create a list of inbound and outbound practices to try out. With the right approach, you can pull in qualified leads that turn into loyal clients.
How To Generate Leads For Your Travel Business
Inbound lead generation revolves mainly around the principle of relationship building through trust and earned engagement.
You bring visitors to your website on their own accord by being visible online and providing value that results in an information exchange: your useful content for their contact information.
The content could solve travelers’ problems and act as a source of research for them, helping them define their travel needs and make a more qualified purchase decision. Ultimately, you can positively influence the buying process and swing business your way.
It’s helping rather than selling.
On the other hand, outbound lead generation targets your ideal audience with a specific message (usually sales-related) about your company or offering.
Because you are in control of when the interaction takes place (and not the prospect), outbound marketing is also referred to as interruption marketing.
There is often a paid delivery element to it, which lends to this type of outreach focusing on selling rather than helping for more immediate conversions.
Eight Inbound & Outbound Practices To Support Lead Generation
1. Attract Clients Through SEO and Keyword Optimization
Everyone turns to Google or the search engines to do their travel research. It means that you have to pay attention to SEO and keywords on your website and the content you publish online.
Start by getting an SEO professional to give your website the once over and optimize it correctly.
At the same time, you need to research what words your audience uses to search for your product or service on the internet. This will give you a list of keywords to target and optimize around.
Once you have this list, write the keywords into your content, including:
- Website and pages
- Blog posts
- Social media posts
- YouTube videos
- Google My Business listing
- Partner listings
- Email marketing campaigns
- Paid advertising
Doing this will give your business better visibility on search engine pages, acting as a way to attract your target audience and generate potential client leads.
2. Build Relationships With Social Media Engagement
Social media users spend hours online browsing fun and interactive content.
So, your social profiles are the perfect lead generation tools to interact with and engage an audience.
Consistently curate, create, and share exciting travel content to build a following and establish your brand reputation. Spark conversations with people and work to engage your audience so that you are the first to come to mind when they want to know something related to your offering.
Building this type of relationship can ultimately land you clients who already know and trust your brand.
3. Get Your (Brand) Voice Out On YouTube Or Podcasts
If you focus on a specific industry niche, your YouTube channel or podcast can land you with qualified travel leads.
Put the right content or people on your YouTube channel or podcast, and you can create a great connection between your audience and brand. You can lead them on an audio or visual journey of discovery that makes your brand and product or service offering more relatable.
4. Blog For Visibility and Credibility
We mentioned earlier that blogging with the right keywords can help to boost your SEO efforts.
Aside from that, it’s a way to form relationships with your audience and give your business a voice. Having a blog on your website can help you to direct people closer to your brand.
You can provide travelers with advice and tips, differentiate yourself from your competition, and distinguish yourself as an expert on your specific subject matter.
5. Encourage Word Of Mouth Marketing
Word of mouth marketing can make lead generation easy by taking the trust you’ve developed with your existing customers and creating ways for them to share their positive experiences with their friends, colleagues, and family.
After all, people trust those close to them to steer them towards the best products and services.
Ask your loyal clients to share their excitement over your brand by leaving a testimonial or review on your website. You can also ask them to tag you on social media in their travel journeys or get permission to share their content on your own profiles.
6. Network To Strengthen Your Partner Connections
Networking and building partner relationships in the travel industry can be beneficial to all involved.
Partnering with complimentary travel providers to create an unbeatable package that appeals to travelers can bolster your offering.
Aside from that, it can also mean that you get extra leads as your partners send inquiries your way and book clients on the package deal.
7. Work Wonders With Email Marketing
To generate leads from email marketing, you need to build a comprehensive contact list. Segment your contacts so that they only receive marketing that is entirely relevant to them.
From there, engage this database with timely and targeted email campaigns. To date, email is one of the most successful lead generation channels with high open rates and a receptive audience.
8. Try Out Paid Or Free Advertising Campaigns
If your business is starting and you’re on a budget, try free classifieds like Craigslist, Oodle, or Geebo. All are extremely popular and can generate leads for your company at little to no expense.
If you are hoping to get qualified results quicker, paid advertising like GoogleAds or Facebook Ads might be better options. You can create highly targeted campaigns to capture the interest of travelers who, based on their online activity, signal greater buying intent.
Inbound practices create value and help your audience, while outbound typically sends a more overt sales message.
Both have their place in your lead generation strategy and can be used to generate interest in your product and service.
Want to know more about WeTravel’s payment and booking solution for the travel industry? Go ahead and book a demo with us.