Using Social Media Power to Get More Bookings
Social media has a significant influence on your guest’s purchase decisions. One in five travellers uses social media to search for travel information. Try searching #travel on Instagram; there are more than 653 million posts! Tiktok gets more than 114 billion views on #travel. That gives you an idea of how important it can be to use social media marketing to reach curious travellers looking for new experiences.
Travellers, especially young travellers, turn to social media for holiday inspiration. You can use social media to make your target audience familiar with your brand, nurture them, and eventually turn them into guests. So, here are a few tips for leveraging social media’s power effectively to get more bookings.
Build a Better Social Media Presence
Being consistently present on social media is vital in building a loyal fan following. So, it’s best to go in with a social media strategy based on your goals and target customers.
Once the strategy is ready, pick up the ideal social media platform, create content accordingly, research the best time to post on social media, and consistently post your content. If you have a small team, it might be difficult for you to manage all the social media profiles. In that case, choose the ideal platforms where your potential customers hang out the most.
When it comes to social media content, just promoting your products alone doesn’t go well with your followers. Make sure that your content informs, educates and entertains your followers. You want visitors to your social channels to say, “WOW, I want to do that!”
Also, check out your competition. Their strategy, content, and even hashtags they use help you figure out what you’re missing in your strategy and how you could improve.
If you are brainstorming a strategy for social media, here are our social media marketing tips for tour and activity operators. We have covered everything from creating a persona to structuring your content calendar for tour operators.
Partner with Influencers
Businesses now flock to social media influencers to promote their products and connect with their audience on a personal level. These influencers, unlike branded commercials, share relatable stories with their followers, and their impressive global reach helps you engage with audiences in different countries.
You don’t need to focus on influencers with larger followings; influencers with smaller and more targeted followers can also inspire travel among the audience. However, just like any other marketing campaign, you need to pick up influencers right for your audience.
Before entering a partnership, you should ask them for data on their followers, traffic, demographics, and engagement rates. Make sure their followers reflect the interests of your target customers. Otherwise, you end up advertising your products to the wrong crowd.
If you are new to influencer marketing, picking the right influencers may seem difficult. You can start your search for influencers among your followers. Check whether any have a huge fan following; if so, feel free to contact them.
While doing all these, remember to vet the influencer. Try your best to avoid any unnecessary controversies in future.
Add Direct Booking Links
An active social media presence gives potential customers a chance to know more about your products and build credibility. Social media posts nurture them daily, and one day they might be ready to book your tours. So, why not make it easy for them?
Give them the option to make the reservation from the social media platform itself.
For example, the Book Now button on Facebook makes it one step closer to booking, converting social traffic to direct bookings quickly. When guests click the Book Now button, they will be taken to your online booking engine to reserve their tours and activities. When directing guests away from a social page, they should always be able to enter the booking funnel with one click.
Host Social Media Contests
Social media contests help you increase engagement among your followers and get more people talking about your brand. This is also a fun way to connect with them and gain more followers.
As always, you need to set goals you want to achieve and plan the contest accordingly. Your goals can be anything—more brand exposure, increase followers, boost engagement, get user-generated content, promote new offers or lead generation.
You can have simple contests by asking them to follow your account or share/ like your post, or tag a friend to win. Another option is to ask them to share their best memories with your tour, which gives you a chance to collect more UGC content for your profile. (of course, get their permission to reuse the content.) Any contest should have a fantastic prize that tempts the audience to participate.
These contests may not give you direct bookings immediately. But these are ways you build your social media presence and engage with the audience so that your brand will be in their mind when they begin their holiday planning.
Always Respond on Social Media
For travellers, social media is now the quickest and most reliable way to reach their tour and activity operators. Instead of picking up the phone and calling the front office or emailing them, people prefer social media to get answers to their queries.
Make sure that you have responsive customer service on all social platforms. You may have all the tour details on the website or have created a great FAQ. Still, shoppers may not have the patience to go through them. They may find it easier to enquire through social media platforms.
It’s not just general queries. Travellers widely use social media to raise their concerns and complaints. They don’t hesitate to air any booking hiccups or negative experiences they had. You should be quick to handle these concerns.
Always respond. Answering their questions and addressing their concerns on social channels gives you an opportunity to build your credibility and connect with your potential customers.
You can use marketing platforms such as Yonder to manage your social media and website queries. Yonder’s AI chatbot can answer customers’ frequently asked tourism-related enquiries. The chatbot has a catalogue of routine questions for various tourism businesses. It saves your staff from answering them manually.
Master Social Media Paid Ads
Social media has now overtaken paid search as an advertising channel. If you are not worried about budget constraints, you should invest in paid social advertising. You need to choose the right platform to advertise your tours and activities.
As we all know, social media platforms know their audience well. They can figure out who is looking for travel ideas and project your ads in front of that specific crowd.
Paid ads help you increase your reach and boost brand awareness. Ads can also be used to retarget those website visitors who have yet to initiate checkout. Also, paid social media ads can retarget individuals who abandoned an online booking.
Keeping track of your social media analytics is inevitable in understanding whether your social media strategy is working. Of course, the increase in the number of bookings through social media tells a lot about the success of your social media strategy. While that’s important, there are other factors that you need to monitor consistently to understand the necessary tweaks.
Here are the primary social media metrics that tour and activity operators should be tracking:
Reach: It gives you an idea of how many people see your content. Also, look at impressions, which indicate the number of times people saw your content.
Engagement: Track how people engage with your content. The number of clicks, likes, shares, comments and even how often your brand gets a mention on different social media platforms matters.
Click-through Rate (CTR): It tells you how often people click a link in your post. The link can be your blog or any call to action.
Conversion Rate – This shows how much social media traffic gets converted into bookings.
Share authentic stories with your followers and inspire travel among your potential customers. They should be able to see and hear relatable stories, making them feel they are missing out on an amazing experience and triggering every visitor’s wanderlust.
If you are exploring ways to get more bookings, an online reservation system can help you! Zaui online booking system has the right features and tools to boost your direct bookings. We are also integrated with many marketing platforms, making it easy to connect your system seamlessly. You can book a call with us and learn more about the Zaui features that can support your business.