So you have an amazing and unique destination in your portfolio, but beds are still empty despite this. Even the most popular locations were unknown once, marketers simply had to put in a carefully planned strategy to create awareness around it.
Here we have a few helpful destination marketing tips to assist you with getting the word out about your venue and subsequently drive tourism to your area.
Top Destination Marketing Tips For Your Travel Business
1. Have A Beautiful Website To Match
If your website is looking outdated and does not show off your amazing location when people land on it, will they believe in what you have to offer?
Make sure that your tour descriptions are up to date, and that your video and images look exactly like what you are offering. Small thumbnail images hidden away in a gallery on the last page of your website is not going to attract the attention that it deserves. Ensure that these are forefront on landing and booking pages for everyone to see.
2. Spark Interest With Social Media
Actively promoting your destination on social media is a great way to get exposure for your brand. As it is a space where people are active and actively searching for travel inspiration, creating something shareable will put your destination in front of a great number of primed eyes.
Take Instagram for example. The platform is a source of beautiful images designed to capture a traveler’s attention. There are currently over one billion monthly active users on the platform, and 406 million instances of the #travel on it. Every time you share a post connect with the right hashtags, you can potentially put your destination marketing images in front of a very large and engaged audience.
Another way to engage on social media is to create a poll or competition on Facebook. Use a cleverly designed question or poll to encourage their participation. The more interaction you get going, the more visible you will become in your follower’s newsfeed.
Use this moment of engagement to generate leads or traffic to your website through a CTA.
3. Setup Targeted Advertising Campaigns
While being present and active on social media may create awareness around your destination, if you are really looking to generate leads or encourage click-throughs, a targeted advertising campaign is your best bet.
When deciding which platform to go with, Google and Facebook tend to have the advantage. With access to a large audience base, the insights they can provide into who you should be targeting and retargeting with your marketing efforts is unparalleled.
In both instances, you can define the ideal audience you would like to reach, set your advertising goals and then watch the traffic come in.
4. Reach Out To Your Travel Partner Network
A travel partner network helps you to extend your destination marketing reach through coordinated efforts with like-minded and relevant tourism businesses. Through a mutually beneficial relationship with partners in your area or in your niche, word about your destination can be shared.
With access to a larger network that you would not normally be privy to, you can get your destination in front of a much larger audience. Of course, the agreement must be beneficial for your partners to ensure they are incentivized, so expect to do some degree of related marketing on their behalf as well.
5. Create A Handy Guide To Use For Content Marketing
You will know that content marketing is important for SEO and ranking your website on the search engines. The trick is to create value for your readers, as well as to leverage keywords for targeting.
With these two factors in place, all you need to do is create the content.
For destination marketing, consider putting together a thorough guide to showcase the location. You have extensive insider knowledge of the area, so why not create a comprehensive handbook for travelers looking to find out all there is to know about it, and get your travel business ranking for certain keywords on the search engines at the same time.
6. By All Means, Use Video
Video content marketing is a powerful resource to complement your destination marketing strategy. After all, when it comes to monthly active users on social networks, YouTube is second only to Facebook.
Shoot a highly visual reel that showcases all your destination has to offer. Let people know what they can expect at your venue, and don’t forget to use a CTA to guide interested viewers to your website.
7. Touch Base With Travel Influencers In Your Area
Because travel influencers have a large following, connecting with them to promote your destination can be beneficial.
Once you have found someone who personifies your business values, approach them with a proposition to get some social and media coverage for your brand.
Micro influencers especially, can generate a good ROI for your destination. Don’t be fooled into thinking that you need access to a person with hundreds of thousands of followers. Rather, you need access to an influencer with a niche of highly interested followers who fit your target audience.
8. Create A Memorable Brand
Travelers remember brands that make them feel something. In the case of your destination, you want this to feeling to be inspiring so that people feel compelled to come and explore it themselves. You can do this through the compelling video content that we have just discussed, or you can do it by actively engaging where it matters.
Use social media to your advantage, let people know you have an opinion and establish yourself as a thought leader in your destination niche. Not only will this give your travel business a voice and personality, but it will also become one that travelers look to when seeking an authority on all things related.
Of course, in order for your brand to be memorable, it has to be recognizable as well. Make sure that your visual identity is forefront for all to see.
There are many ways to market your destination, and ideally, you want to be accessing several channels at once instead of relying on a single one.
It is never too late to change up your strategy, and remember to keep track of analytics and sales conversions to measure the success of your relative campaigns to improve on in future!