In the post pandemic world, online presence is the first impression possible clients get of your tour operator business. A good, consistent and quality presence can get you awareness and consideration through social media channels, as well as trust to buy your tours. Post tour, it can help you grow your positive user reviews, social shares and customer satisfaction. For it to also work as a new form of word of mouth recommendation, you need to learn to use social media first. Here, the ultimate guide for social media for tour operators.
1. Choose and plan social media for tour operators
The first step to an effective social media strategy is to analyze what platforms you want to use and how many. There is no point in using all of them and not investing enough time to actually make them work and post quality content as well as engaging with the followers. So, firstly, get to know the benefits of each channel and choose wisely.
Even with the intent of promoting your tours, keep in mind that overly promotional content doesn’t engage the audience and it ends up not inviting them to actually book the tours. Creating content that lets the public see what your tours and activities are about, encourages trust and desire to buy them.
Consistency is also one of the most important characteristics of social media in general. If you don’t post consistently, your account will not grow. Also, a profile with lacking content or no content at all does not give a good impression to possible clients and they are likely to not trust to book your tours. In this day and age, social media presence is expected and usually the best way to be found online.
It is a very visual platform, in which two-way interaction is very easy. It offers its own editing tools and analytics, however it requires a lot of attention to detail and quality content. Instagram is also a very good platform for UGC (User Generated Content) and influencer promotion. Its majority of users are in an 18 to 34 age gap.
It has a big propensity to virality that can help you be seen worldwide. In the post pandemic world, Tiktok has become a new search engine, especially for Gen Z, so it is good to be present on this platform. It also has its own editing tools, nevertheless, the content with better engagement is the one focused on storytelling, aesthetically pleasing visuals and comedy.
Pinterest is the platform for ideas, whether it’s DIY’s and crafts, planning a vacation, choosing a gift, etc. It has become a grid to look for inspiration, so posting beautiful photographs of your tours with the direct link to them, could definitely inspire them to book them while planning a vacation.
Twitter, now X
To tweet is to use your voice as a company. It is a platform less visual than others, but its focus on writing can be effective when solving problems and needing to call attention to something. On the other hand, it allows for a specific type of engagement in which a conversation between user and company is easily formed.
Facebook is a great platform to create credibility and share visuals with the community of followers you have. It is also comfortable for a direct communication channel with the clients, to answer any questions they might have. Facebook has a very different and more mature age gap in active users, from about 25 to 45.
Mostly used by the younger generations, Snapchat lets you share what is happening in the moment through its format of stories and you can even use different filters to make it more fun and engaging. It is a very instantaneous platform with active users either from Gen Alpha or Gen Z.
2. Create content for social media as a tour operator
There are infinite ideas on what to post on social media, but it is also good to analyze and observe what your competitors or other tour operators across the world are posting. When thinking about what to post, you need to think about what your audience and clientele would like to see. However, it is also very effective to encourage visitors to post UGC and tag your account, because that is a new form of word of mouth recommendation on social media.
Some ideas of content for tour operators on social media:
- Behind the scenes preparing for an activity
- Beautiful scenery of a tour
- Post activity/experience reactions of travelers (always with consent to post)
- Introducing the team of tour guides
- If there are animals involved, tips on how to act around them as a visitor
- Their care
- Introducing them as part of the team
- Sharing some quick history facts about places travelers can visit on your tours
- A normal day at the office
- Tips to travel to that specific country
- Using trends or trending sounds with your business in mind
- Funny and relatable experiences you may have
- Fun facts about the flora and fauna or the gastronomy of the place
3.Edit content yourself
One of the biggest trends on social media nowadays is transparency and “being real”, which is why content is not necessarily expected to be absolutely professional. Nevertheless, creating pretty and attractive quality content is expected and can be easy with the right tools. Most editing apps have templates and are very user friendly and intuitive. Outside of the tools that the social media platforms offer themselves, here are some good and free editing apps you can use either on a computer or on a mobile device.
It has several templates you can use and lets you choose the specific size for each social media channel. You can also create infographics and edit photos or videos. Canva can be used on your phone or computer and lets you download your creations in different formats like jpg, png, mp4, etc. It also offers several animations, videos, images and graphics you can add to your designs.
It is a very easy to use video editing platform with templates and direct access to Tiktok. It has various semi-professional implements to generate engaging audiovisual results. It is also very intuitive and user friendly and has an audio and sounds library you can add to your edits. It is also connected to the Tiktok sounds archive.
A simplified version of the professional tool. Photoshop Express is the perfect app to edit your photos in a semi professional manner and have them look amazing and ready to post. It offers almost all the same instruments as the normal Photoshop, so you can play with light and color settings on your pictures.
4. Promote your posts and tours
Social media platforms have incredible and mostly cheap ways to promote your tours and even allow you to segment your target audience for your ads. However, a different, but effective form of promotion would be through influencers. These could help you boost awareness, consideration and even sales while generating content for your tour operator brand.
Nevertheless, it requires a lot of analyzing to have a successful influencer campaign. It is important to check what travel influencers have values that align with your brand and which ones have a big conversion rate or which ones work better only for awareness, how big their community is and how engaged or interactive they are. And if you decide to hire an influencer to promote your tours, negotiate a good deal that works for both parties involved and gets you the best results possible with evidence to back them up.
5. Analyze your social media interactions
It is very important to take a look at the analytics of your platforms because they will give you a broad idea of your audience and how it is reacting to the content you are posting. That way, you can improve what is not working and keep doing what is. This feedback can also help you increase the quality of your tours by seeing what the audience is looking for.
The analytics can also be a way to measure customer experience based on the amount of tagged posts, shares and new followers you get after the tours. And last, it is also another channel through which you can get reviews of your tours. TourReview is a tool that can help you analyze and manage all the reviews you get in one dashboard so you can keep growing your business.
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