1- How to use Facebook and Instagram to attract clients that will book tours directly with the supplier.
2- How to target specific markets using demographics, psychographics, user online booking behavior, and interests(personae) as guides.
3- Expectations of those who book via Social Media channels.
4- Develop a content strategy.
5- Joining FB groups and using other methods such as cross-posting content to attract more clients.
6- Identify travel products and services that will attract target groups or types of travelers.
We assume that the viewer has already set up the FB and Instagram pages with appropriate and accurate information with the most important being that the in-app geolocation is correct. It is best to optimize the page by adding profile picture, description that accurately describes the business, and include contact information.
Best Social Media Platform for Selling Tours Direct?
Which social media platform is best for selling tours and activities in the leisure market?
It depends on the specific target market and the type of tours and activities being offered, but some popular social media platforms for travel are:
- Facebook: Facebook is a great platform for targeting a specific audience through advertising and building a community of interested potential customers.
- Instagram: Instagram is particularly useful for showcasing visually appealing images and videos of the destination and activities.
- YouTube: YouTube is a powerful platform for creating video content and providing potential customers with an in-depth look at the tours and activities being offered.
- TikTok: TikTok is an emerging social media platform that has recently gained in popularity. It is particularly useful for targeting a younger audience and creating short, engaging videos that showcase the destination and activities.
- LinkedIn: For B2B purposes and targeting travel agents and tour operators. This would be relevant if the supplier has skills in writing itineraries, is able to accept payments online, and has professional tour guides that can work for tour operators serving developed market clients. Additionally, as tourism evolves, new markets such as “virtual DMCs” such as www.vio.travel may purchase directly from tours and activity providers. (Thus, one should always be open to new verticals for business, particularly with “new product” as there is always demand for off-the-beaten path travel products.)
It is best to test different platforms and focus on those that provide the best results for your specific business and target market.
What is the best way to identify target markets for social media vis-a-vis selling tours and activities?
- Demographics: Identify the age, gender, income, education level, occupation and country of origin of your target market. This will help you understand their interests and travel habits, and tailor your product mix and marketing accordingly.
- Interests and hobbies: Understand the interests and hobbies of your target market, as this can help you create content that appeals to them and attract them to your tours and activities.
- Past travel behavior: Look at past travel behavior to understand where they have been before, how they prefer to travel and what they look for when planning their trip. This information can help you create tailored packages and offers that cater to their specific needs. According to SKIFT 2018 85% of travelers book tours and attractions after leaving home, thus, this market has plenty of upside.
- Psychographics: Analyze the attitudes, values, and lifestyle of your target market. This information can help you understand their motivations for travel and how you can appeal to them.
- Social media behavior: Analyze social media behavior to understand which platforms your target market is active on, what type of content they engage with, and how they interact with brands and/or businesses.
- Competitor analysis: Look at your competitors and local DMCs to understand who they are targeting and what kind of content and advertising they are using. This can provide valuable insights into your target market and help you identify areas where you can differentiate yourself. Independent operators can shadow destination management companies as they have already identified products and markets and the small operator can address those demands, perhaps more flexibly and quickly than an established large firm.
- Surveys and feedback: Conduct surveys and gather feedback from past customers to understand their preferences, pain points and what they liked about their experience. This information can help you create a better product and tailor your marketing and advertising accordingly. (Note: “Pain points” are often price structures and modes of transport for the majority of travelers. Pricing is self-evident but often travelers may prefer to travel by car than a rickshaw as comfort may be more important than novelty.)
- Location based targeting: Use location-based targeting on social media platforms to reach potential customers in specific regions or countries that are likely to be interested in your tours and activities. Target groups such as “Women Traveling in Peru” or similar as members of these groups fit well with social media channels.
How can one identify personas for marketing purposes for sales of activities of tours?
- Create a buyer persona template: A buyer persona template is a detailed description of your ideal customer, including information about their demographics, interests, pain points, and goals. This will help you understand who you are targeting and how to tailor your marketing and advertising to them.
- Use data and research: Use data and research to gather information about your target market, such as demographics, interests, and past travel behavior. This information can be used to create buyer personas that are based on real data.
- Conduct interviews and surveys: Conduct interviews and surveys with past customers, potential customers, and industry experts to gather insights and information about your target market. This can help you create more detailed and accurate buyer personas.
- Use segmentation: Segment your target market into smaller groups based on demographics, interests, or past travel behavior. This can help you create more specific and tailored buyer personas for each segment.
- Create multiple personas: Create multiple buyer personas to represent different segments of your target market. This will help you understand the different needs and preferences of each segment, and tailor your marketing and advertising accordingly.
- Continuously update and refine: Continuously update and refine your buyer personas based on new data and insights. This will help you stay aligned with the changing needs and preferences of your target market.
- Use of different channels: Use different channels to reach out to different personas. For example, if your target market is young and adventurous, use Instagram and TikTok to reach them. If your target market is older and more affluent, use LinkedIn and Facebook to reach them.
- Use storytelling: Use storytelling to connect with your personas by creating stories that they can relate to and that align with their interests, goals, and pain points.
Client Expectations: Very Important, Understand the Client Wants / Needs
The expectations of the average Facebook and Instagram user is very important. include:
- Authentic experiences: Tourists are looking for unique, authentic experiences that showcase the local culture and way of life. They want to escape the typical tourist destinations and see the world as it actually is.
- Expertise and knowledge: Tourists want to be guided by knowledgeable and experienced tour providers who can offer insights into the local culture, history, and people. Providers of tours must market themselves as experts with in-depth knowledge of their domain.
- Safety and comfort: Safety is a top priority for most tourists. They expect the tour provider to take all necessary precautions to ensure their safety, comfort, and well-being. And physical safety is not the only concern. Clients expect “financial protection” as well; what that means is that they should not be taken to a souvenir shop and over charged for trinkets. Nor should they be taken to select restaurants and be overcharged for substandard food or services.
- Flexibility and customization: Tourists want the flexibility to customize their tour itinerary based on their interests, budget, and schedule. They want to be able to create a tour that is tailored to their needs and preferences.
- Good value for money: Tourists are looking for good value for their money. They want to feel that they are getting a fair price for their tour, with no hidden costs or surprises.
- Positive reviews and recommendations: Tourists are likely to rely on the recommendations and reviews of others to make their decision about which tour provider to choose. Positive reviews and recommendations from previous customers can have a significant impact on their decision-making process.
- Responsiveness and customer service: Tourists expect quick and efficient responses to their questions and concerns. They want to work with tour providers who are responsive and offer excellent customer service.
By understanding the expectations of the average social media user tour providers can tailor their marketing and customer service strategies to meet the needs and preferences of their target audience.