The tourism industry isn’t what it used to be. Walk-in travel agencies used to be the main outlet for people to make vacation reservations. The dawn of the Internet has disrupted traditional travel channels, with online travel agents (OTAs) and booking aggregators allowing people to do it all themselves.
In order to compete and stay relevant, travel and tourism companies have had to adapt to the times. Tourism bureaus have used mass media and gone online to find new markets. Travel agencies have also had to embrace the Internet and offer competitive services and pricing.
Marketing and advertising are vital to tourism companies’ success. Here are a few effective advertising strategies:
1. Target customers who are in the planning phase of their vacation
When people go online to make travel arrangements, they are usually in the planning phase of their vacation. They are reading articles about possible destinations, researching local areas of interest and comparing prices. That’s why it’s important to provide content that is relevant to these inquiries. Using your social media pages and website to promote popular destinations and supplying relevant content can help make these travellers’ decisions easier.
2. Encourage repeat business
Most people will continue to do business with companies that treat them well and offer quality service at the best possible prices. Loyalty rewards and discounts are a great way to thank your customers for their business and encourage them to keep coming back. When your customers are happy, they’re more likely to refer their family and friends to your company. This provides invaluable free word-of-mouth marketing.
3. Have a plan
No matter what your sales and marketing efforts are, they won’t be effective if you don’t have a plan. You need to decide what your goals are, what you’re going to do to implement them, and how you’re going to track your progress. Engaging in sales process mapping, timelines and other tactics can help you manage those goals efficiently. You can track your progress, evaluate your results and make changes when necessary.
Measure your return on investment
Travel and tourism companies often have limited resources, so they have to use those resources wisely. Measure the success rate of mailings, newsletters, giveaways, competitions, and other promotional materials. If they don’t bringing in sales, then it’s time to try something new. You don’t have time or money to waste on something that’s simply not working. Focus on efforts that are effective in bringing you the best overall returns on your investment.
These are just some of the many ways that tourism businesses can advertise their services to both new and repeat customers. Other strategies include building working relationships with other travel and tourism businesses, having an appealing and frequently updated website, using search engine optimization, and engaging with your social media followers.
Most of these strategies don’t require a lot of time but are things that have to be done every day. Your competition isn’t just local anymore. You’re dealing with an international market full of similar companies that are vying for people’s dollars and attention. Using the right advertising efforts can help you stand out above the rest and continue to build and grow your customer base for years to come.