Travel has been in limbo since the COVID-19 pandemic struck. While its effects have greatly affected—or even halted—operations for plenty of travel businesses worldwide, they also offered an opportunity to rethink marketing strategies.
It is no secret that we still experience the consequences of the virus today. But as vaccinations slowly roll out worldwide, small businesses can get ahead by quickly responding to consumer needs in the evolving travel landscape.
If you are helping your travel startup get back on track or still in the process of calculating a property management franchise cost, these tips will help grow your business this 2021.
Keep Building on Your Social Media Presence
It doesn’t take an expert to see that the main playing field is now in the digital space. In 2021, consumers will keep using social media to research potential purchases and services they are interested in availing of.
Empathize with your audience
This was important during the pandemic, and it will remain vital to your strategy when the world moves forward. Your core message should not be overtly sales-driven. Instead, focus on how you can tap into the emotions of your audience.
For startups, a few ways to do this are posting about the beginnings of your business, the team behind it, and the causes you support. The idea is to share a bit of your “heart” as a business to your audience and to maintain this tone in your promotional materials.
Market on TikTok
Chinese app TikTok became all the rage when the pandemic hit last year. It gave many people something fun to do while staying safe at home. Be it short dance videos, singing videos, or even informative clips, TikTok is now a space for both fun challenges and spreading information.
This is an opportunity for your brand to reel users in with travel videos and tips. Take advantage of algorithms that make relevant videos appear on users’ feeds more often. You can also use hashtags to help people find your videos easily.
Advertise on Facebook and Instagram
Shell out some money to boost your posts on both Facebook and Instagram. What you invest in ads here has the potential to reach a much larger audience than your budget has planned for.
Tailor your posts for each platform. Visual content, such as photos or short videos, is great for Instagram. Facebook can accommodate a bigger variety of content, from visual posts to text-heavy ones, that invite people to further interact with your page.
This means that you should leave longer, more informative text posts for Facebook. Also, curate your Instagram page with good visuals and a well-planned aesthetic, as these will catch the audience better.
Simulate an Experience
Due to the many months without flights and tourism activities, you have to let people remember the feeling of traveling. While waiting for the world to become safer, give them something to look forward to in the future.
Turn to virtual travel
Take cues from livestreamed tours and develop virtual tours of your own. Make them straightforward and engaging, keeping in mind the challenge of watching it all take place through a computer screen. If the budget is tight, you can even begin with mapped out walking tours through Google Maps.
These can be a gateway to introducing your business to more consumers. Equip your website and social media pages to answer whatever questions people usually have.
Use testimonials from bloggers
Visualizing travel is more credible when discussed by someone who has already been to a specific destination. Employ influencers such as vloggers and bloggers to soft-sell your brand through personal posts about their favorite destinations or their post-COVID-19 wishlists.
Personal stories that introduce the audience to how your business works will result in more clicks and better sales. Tap into your audience’s concerns and let these stories respond to their needs.
Offer personalized packages
When your audience becomes interested in your business, capture them through packages that apply to them. You can only offer relevant services when you understand what your customers are looking for.
Take surveys and put up polls to get to know what they want to see. Then offer recommendations and special promos that give them the special experiences they are looking for.
Always Emphasize: Safety First
Even in a post-COVID-19 world, people will remain conscious about their safety wherever they visit. Make prioritizing safety a staple in your brand marketing.
Show through pictures and videos that you follow strict safety guidelines. Post visitor instructions about store or workplace protocols. These efforts, along with good, consistent marketing, inform your audience that you care about their protection and comfort and will make you more trustworthy to them.