#SproutChat Recap: Creating Content for the Travel Industry

It’s expected that most people will take a vacation and then post pictures and videos of their trip on social. This makes marketing for travel professionals easy, right? Even in an industry overwhelmed with user-generated-content, there are challenges. How do you get folks to your travel destination when cost and time often get in the way?

Sprout All Star, Keri Jaehnig, has spent years working in the travel industry and has won several state tourism awards for her social media campaigns and marketing efforts. This week, she joined #SproutChat and shared her insights for making the content your travel brand produces stand out and getting visitors in the door.

Create Content That Elicits Emotion

Whether you’re creating content for a hotel, attraction or destination you need to tap into the feelings that people get when they consider or visit your travel option. Storytelling and showcasing a natural, authentic scenery and experience can go a long way. One enticing photo is all that it takes to persuade someone to book a trip. If you don’t have the resources in-house, ask for permission on Instagram to use geotagged posts or hire a freelancer.

A1) In my opinion, LIVE video captured at events & attractions, video of emotion triggering activities & images. #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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A2) Sunsets, sunrises, water, sun & water, people enjoying things – All great to entice people! #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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@SproutSocial A1: Definitely visual UGC! Travelers like to see what other people have done and experienced #SproutChat

— CrowdRiff (@CrowdRiff) January 18, 2017

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A1.

Storytelling.

Invite your audience to share their own travel adventures. #SproutChat

— Gabriela Cardoza (@CardozaGab) January 18, 2017

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A1: Our clients love featuring UGC submitted by happy customers after they return from a trip across all their social channels. #sproutchat

— SocialXpresso ☕️ (@socialxpresso) January 18, 2017

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A1C Have #travel ambassadors (employees, customers, vendors) that share tips, pics, & opinions. #sproutchat

— Michelle (@michelletweet) January 18, 2017

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@SproutSocial A1. Live, in-the-moment visual content will continue to grow in popularity, among both consumers and brands. #SproutChat [AR]

— ModSquad (@modsquad) January 11, 2017

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It’s All About the Blog

If you have the budget and resources to create long-form content consistently, you should definitely have a blog. If you don’t have your own blog, research industry adjacent blogs that you can contribute to in order to gain exposure. If you aren’t comfortable with self promotion, offer complimentary tickets or comped stay to influencers in exchange for an unbiased piece of content.

A3a) Blogs can feature an array of possibilities! Events info, new videos, ideas for itineraries, and more – Images are key! #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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A3b) LOVE when attractions contribute to a destination blog – Helps visitors understand where they'll visit! #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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A3c) Here's an example of a blog pulling in a local attraction to their blog: https://t.co/sKw4O6OuRi #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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A3d) For destinations – Speak to the reason for the visit to attract visitors! Example: https://t.co/sKw4O6OuRi #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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@SproutSocial A3.a) Guess Writers, Video Blogging mixed with text summaries, Top 10 photo competitions w recap lists. #SproutChat

— Vishal Rose👾 (@Vishal_Rose) January 18, 2017

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A3 – We like reading about hidden gems – things about the destination that you wouldn't find on your typical travel sites. #SproutChat

— Rebel.com (@rebeldotcom) January 18, 2017

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A3. Useful suggestions! Think about what travelers would really want to know. #SproutChat

— Reva Minkoff (@revaminkoff) January 18, 2017

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A3. Destinations can use blogs to promote places 2 see and things 2 do. They can also write about people's experiences &history #SproutChat

— Plumlytics (@Plumlytics) January 18, 2017

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A3 – Always address the readers' top question:
"How can I get the optimum experience during my time at your destination?"#SproutChat https://t.co/c7LpdmCl4g

— Susannah the Geek (@greatergoodgeek) January 18, 2017

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Ask for Visitor Reviews

One of the best validations you can have are reviews from visitors. Most people won’t write reviews on their own, so asking is necessary. Try to get in touch a few days after your guests return home and ask for their feedback. Whether they’re raving or ranting, honest insight will always help. Be sure to respond to as many reviews as you can and always say “thank you.”

A5: Get your audience to relate to the review – how does it make them feel #sproutchat

— Adele McIntosh (@AdeleMcIntosh) January 18, 2017

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A5: Highlight reviews and testimonials whenever possible, with photos & faces even better, #sproutchat

— Brad Lovett (@Brad_Lovett) January 18, 2017

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A5 Storytelling is always an great way of sharing traveller reviews. People trust and relate to others 'stories'. #SproutChat

— Plumlytics (@Plumlytics) January 18, 2017

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A5: Our clients use reviews in a lot of their ad creative. Attractions especially love seeing their brand showcased this way. #sproutchat

— SocialXpresso ☕️ (@socialxpresso) January 18, 2017

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A5b Travel reviews are also a platform to educate – "didn't like the cold water in June? Best time to surf is August." #sproutchat

— Michelle (@michelletweet) January 18, 2017

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A5: Use traveler reviews to improve services, highlight adventures and engage with your community. Start conversations #SproutChat

— Brandie McCallum (@lttlewys) January 18, 2017

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Take Note from these Awesome Travel Brands

Get some inspiration as you create content.

Bonus b) Here's a collection of "small town" travel destinations using SM: https://t.co/sKw4O6OuRi #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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BONUS Answer: There are many GREAT #travel brands!! @EFExplore does a great job & they are in #Inauguration mode now #sproutchat

— Keri Jaehnig (@kerijaehnig) January 18, 2017

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@SproutSocial 😍So many! @HelloBC has an AMAZING trip planner, build from Insta pics called BC Explorer https://t.co/39jpi7xeJ1 #SproutChat

— CrowdRiff (@CrowdRiff) January 18, 2017

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BONUS: @condenast @CLIAGlobal #sproutchat

— Adele McIntosh (@AdeleMcIntosh) January 18, 2017

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Join us next week for #SproutChat where we’ll discuss getting UGC content from your colleagues–a helpful tactic to fill in your content calendar. In the meantime, join our Facebook community to connect with other marketers and discuss anything social media marketing related.

This post #SproutChat Recap: Creating Content for the Travel Industry originally appeared on Sprout Social.