These are turbulent times in the travel industry. Tour operators, big and small, are faced with unprecedented challenges. It can be hard to think clearly about the future and how to keep on marketing your business and building your brand.
What will customers want? What kind of travel will be possible? How will consumer preferences and habits change post Covid-19?
There are many questions and few clear answers. But amongst it all, we all know that businesses that succeed ‘on the other side’ of the crisis will be those that sustain and increase their marketing and communication activity now, despite all of the challenges.
The key is simplicity. It’s all about focusing on the art of the possible. Here are 5 simple steps to keep your travel business in the minds of your customers and to reach potential new customers
1. Website facelift
With business slow, you may have more time to review and smarten up both your desktop website and mobile version. Website visits using desktops have skyrocketed in the last weeks compared to mobile, due to home working. Bear that in mind.
Is your website text punchy and straight to the point about your product or service? From your font to your menu, is your visual brand identity consistent and looking good? Is it easy to navigate and find your unique travel offer?
Small changes can go a long way to enhancing your brand’s perception. Could new photography freshen up the look of your website? Are their sections that could be reduced or cut altogether? Maybe not all the content is relevant in today’s marketplace? Take a critical look at your website. There could be some ‘quick wins’ for your communication.
You can build your future customer base by sharing your expertise, knowledge and experience via social media. Blogs, social media posts, webinars, videos can all be good for this. Don’t ‘disappear’ from view. Load photos to Instagram, stay engaged on Facebook and keep tweeting. Do you have destination or experience videos that you can share? Can you recommend a certain destination or holiday activity? Is there a special travel experience or personal memory that you can talk about?
3. Dreaming is free
People have time on their hands and they are starting to dream of where to travel when this period ends. Tell your potential customers what you can offer. Now is the perfect time to plug into these dreams and show people their possible options! They may not be booking travel now, but in a few months they could well be rushing back to you after a long period of confinement.
Make sure that your travel business is clearly identified with something specific; a style of travel, a destination, a type of offer. People may be confined at home for now but they are still dreaming of the future and possible travel plans.
4. Create a newsletter
Developing a newsletter (if you haven´t already!) is a great way to create an appetite for travel in your clients and potential clients. It doesn’t have to be long. Just a few short ‘snippet’ articles will encourage readers to click through to your website and see the packages and tours that you can offer. Talk about what you know best and include beautiful images from trips or great reviews that travellers have given you. You could even try a simple competition or teaser quiz to make it more fun and interesting and really drive up those click-throughs.
5. Customer testimonials
You have a successful travel business with many, many delighted customers. Get some simple case studies together. A customer quote, a brief trip description and a couple of photos can be enough. Potential customers will identify with people “just like me”. The testimonials can be downloadable in PDF format or can be a page on your website.
This is not an easy period to navigate and there is no one-size fits all rulebook. But the organisations that will emerge strongest after this pandemic will be those that use this time to creatively reconstruct and build strong foundations that will serve them into the future. Focusing some energy on revitalising marketing and communication for your brand can sow the seeds for future success.
Please get in touch if you would like more personalised tips on your communications strategy and how to achieve the best results. We will listen to your specific goals and objectives and provide advice as much as we can.
Contact Philip Martin of DMA Partners: