It's a new year, so everyone is looking to make some resolutions and (hopefully!) stick to them. For those of us involved in the travel industry, we're in exactly the same boat.
2016 looks set to be a bumper year for travel brands, so many of the resolutions we've come across revolve around reaching more potential travel customers and helping them achieve their holiday goals for 2016 – whether they be world exploration or simply kicking back and taking it easy.
The need for improved content marketing strategies is one resolution in particular that keeps cropping up. Within the last decade the travel and tourism industry has undergone a digital revolution, with most consumers becoming savvy with online material and expecting travel brands to keep up with digital trends.
This means providing consumers with the online content they desire is essential. A well-written and glossy brochure may go some way to attracting customers, but in 2016 the digital space plays a key role.
Here are some resolutions travel brands can make to improve their content marketing strategies and kick-start 2016 in the best way possible:
1. Plan content
Don't wait until the last minute to come up with blog ideas; create a strategy early on and conduct thorough research before publishing. Consumers can tell when content has been rushed and this makes it less engaging, so invest time and resources early on to ensure high-quality content. Also be sure to regularly schedule content and don't slack – there should be a good mix of quality and quantity; not one versus the other.
2. Invest in tech
Content doesn't just have to be written – it can come in the form of pictures, video and interactive content, too. In 2016 technology is not only advanced but more affordable as well, so travel brands should look to invest in systems that allow them to create a diverse content offering. Make it dynamic, personalised and SEO-friendly for maximum engagement.
3. Get social
Trust us, travel customers are visiting social sites to research and discuss travel options – so brands need to have a presence, too. Not only is it a fantastic platform to directly discuss options with people, but it's the perfect space to draw attention to other pieces of content featured on websites or separate blogs.
4. Promote reviews
Online content is open to review, but this isn't something to shy away from – quite the opposite. Whilst the odd negative review can be disheartening receiving positive reviews to a piece of content has a knock-on effect, providing encouragement for further posts but also drawing in new customers.
5. Be more open
It is easy to focus on one particular site once a brand has established a significant following and simply build a strong presence there, but with more and more new online sites appearing every day, brands needs to expand their reach. Marking out new territory in different online spaces may seem daunting but it will help with customer acquisition. Similarly, sharing content from travellers across different sites will help with this endeavour.