Content marketing for tour operators

In online marketing there are different roads to success. One road that every tour operator should consider is content marketing. You can use this strategy to rank your website higher in Google, grow your social media following and increase your sales.

Why every tour operator should consider content marketing

Content marketing is a marketing strategy in which valuable, relevant and consistent content is distributed to reach your target group. All with the aim of encouraging your target group to take profitable actions – such as buying your services.

“Give potential customers what they are looking for, while they are actively searching for it.”

As a tour operator, content marketing is a great way to build your brand in a positive way. People are surrounded by advertisements all day and you don’t want to be yet another business that interrupts people with what they are doing. Instead, give potential customers what they are looking for, while they are actively searching for it.

Benefits of content marketing

Starting out with content marketing is an opportunity to invest in your business’ online presence. You have to realise that this is a long-term marketing strategy and doesn’t always bring you high results in a short amount of time. However, if you can commit to applying this strategy consistently on the long run, you will definitely have your return on investment. Several benefits of content marketing are that it:

Ranks your website higher in Google

A question I have heard many times before, from clients in any field, is ‘how can we rank higher in Google?’. Unfortunately, there is no big secret that helps your website instantly rank higher in search engines. However, a good place to start is content marketing.

Google’s answer to what you should do to get in their good graces is to basically “create great content”. Providing users with the most relevant information they are searching for is what Google strives for. You can be the link between your potential customers and Google by providing content that suits both.

Grows your social media accounts

Ever had the problem of not knowing what to post on your business’ social media? Creating relevant content provides you with unique information to share. Your followers will be far more interested in non-commercial content that matches their interests, than advertisements that tell them to buy your product.

Increases your sales

By ranking higher in Google and growing your social media following, you will attract more website visitors. On your website, visitors will find content that directly matches their interests. Follow-up on them and give them the opportunity to consider buying your services. The main difference with traditional advertisements, is that you’re not telling your potential customers what to do, you are simply making them realise your business provides exactly what they are looking for.

Reaching your target group

The reason why businesses want their websites to rank higher and social media following to grow, usually comes down to reaching more potential customers. As a tour operator this goal is no different. First of all, it’s important to identify your ideal target group. Without having a clear idea of who your target group is, it’s impossible to create the right content for them.

Content marketing: types of content

Types of content

When you have identified your ideal target group, you have to select the content you want to create. A tip of the iceberg for content types are:

  • Blog posts
  • White papers
  • Checklists
  • Videos
  • Infographics
  • E-books
  • Podcasts
  • Interviews

You can create content in so many forms it can be overwhelming. My advice is to start with types of content you can commit to long-term. When you’ve got the hang of it, you can always expand your production and create a larger variety of content.

Values of content marketing

Always keep in mind the following values when you start planning your content creation:

  • Valuable: what value does this content have for your (potential) customers?
  • Relevant: is the content relevant to the target group you want to reach?
  • Consistent: is it consistent with other content you’ve created?

Content marketing model

4 steps to successfully execute content marketing

The above model shows the 4 steps you should take and retake to successfully use content marketing as a tour operator. Below we’ll guide you through these steps.

1. Create your content

First of all, you should start by creating content that is of interest to your ideal target group (keep in mind the values of content marketing). To write appealing travel content can be quite a challenge. Not everyone enjoys writing content and others may lack writing skills. However, we believe that everyone can learn to develop a writing style that is of interest to both humans and search engines.

7 tips to write appealing travel content

To help you along, we’ve written put together 7 tips to write appealing travel content:

  1. Consider your buyer persona
  2. Define your goal
  3. Keep it simple, stupid
  4. Visualise your content
  5. Write lengthy texts
  6. Use outgoing and internal links
  7. Strategically place keywords

2. Promote your content

After you have created content, it is not enough to just let it sit and wait for the magic to happen. If you want your content to be seen, promotion is key. Your goal with this is to get your target group to visit your website. Different ways to promote your content are:

Website

Obviously, your content should be posted on your website. Not only to make sure you actually profit from higher ranking in Google, but also to provide your website visitors with fresh content. Your new content has a better chance of gaining popularity with Google when a lot of people see it. That’s why you should refer to your new content on relevant and most viewed pages.

Social media

Another no brainer is sharing your content on social media. However, what a lot of people don’t realise is that you can post about the same content multiple times over a longer period of time. Not every one of your followers will see your social media post the first time you share it. Make sure you refrain from spamming by making variations in:

  • Title
  • Description
  • Quotes from the content

Email

Reach out to your customers by email. Email marketing is a great way to share your new content. When your content has value and is relevant to the receiver, people won’t see it as annoying or spam. For even greater reach, always give them the opportunity to share your content at the end of your email or newsletter.

3. Convert your target group

Now that you’ve done your best to get your target group to visit your website, it’s time to convert them into customers. Turning website visitors into customers is a big part of a tour operator’s content marketing strategy.

3 easy steps to turn website visitors into customers

The following 3 easy steps help you to get new leads for your business:

  1. Create a travel lead magnet
  2. Ask for relevant traveller information in return
  3. Turn travel leads into paying customers

4. Analyse your data

Lastly, it’s essential to analyse your data. You’re investing a lot of time and energy into your content marketing strategy, so it’s worthwhile to know what the results are. There are numerous of free tools to use for analysing website, search, social media and email data.

We advise you to gather your social media and email data first party. Let’s say you’re using Facebook, Instagram and Mailchimp: all these tools have their own excellent tools for analysing data.

Tools to analyse website and search data

For website and search data we advise you to start off with Google’s free tools:

In conclusion

In the end, using content marketing successfully is a strategy for tour operators who have the discipline to consistently create content on the long run. It gives you the opportunity to create a solid brand that people will like or even love because of its great content.

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About <a href="https://goodtourisminstitute.com/library/author/rikvandenbrink/" target="_self">Rik van den Brink</a>

About Rik van den Brink

Rik is an experienced online marketeer. He has been running a successful online marketing agency for around 10 years and specialises in subjects like search engine optimisation, search engine advertising, social media- and email marketing.

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