Get Ahead of Your Competitors With These Travel Digital Marketing Strategies
The travel industry is a significant contributor to Thailand’s economy. After the COVID-19 pandemic that resulted in sluggish profits over the past two to three years, the travel industry is experiencing a revival.
The travel industry in Thailand isn’t limited to tourist attractions but also includes related businesses such as hotels, condominiums, restaurants, souvenir shops, as well as domestic transportation.
Travellers’ behaviours and needs have changed post-pandemic, so businesses need to adjust their marketing strategies to address these changes. We have put together three travel digital marketing strategies to help companies adapt to their target audiences’ needs and demands. This article also includes case studies of success stories where the marketing plan implemented achieved the best results.
Why Travel Digital Marketing Matters
Today’s travellers often use the internet as a primary source of information wherever they are. Aside from doing their research about their desired destinations online, travellers make use of online channels to book their hotels and flight tickets.
For this reason, digital marketing is essential for those in the travel business! Using online channels, especially social media platforms, the internet’s broad reach can be leveraged to build brand awareness and increase customer knowledge about a business.
As a start, Google My Business helps travellers discover your business through Google Map SEO. You can then continue to attract more visitors by sharing relevant and engaging content.
Digital marketing allows you to implement strategies faster through various convenient tools and applications. For instance, if a marketing campaign you’re monitoring is not performing as expected, you can quickly track data to determine the problem and make necessary adjustments to minimise losses and maximise gains.
3 Digital Marketing Strategies for Travel Industries
Strategy 1: Create Content on Social Media
Social media platforms have a huge impact on marketing in the travel industry, especially in helping businesses reach their target audience quickly. Research into digital travel marketing post-pandemic revealed that up to 40% of travellers between 18-33 years old use social media as their inspiration to plan trips. Therefore, this platform presents an effective way for businesses to reach travellers which don’t require high costs.
Here are some marketing tips to remember when using this strategy:
Analyse the target audience.
Social media strategy is not that different from typical marketing plans in general. Mainly, marketers should analyse the needs of travellers in order to design the advertisement or marketing material that best suits their travelling behaviours. In general, there are two main things travellers want to create: new experiences and impressive memories they want to share.
Create unique content.
Make your content stand out by sharing different experiences or new information your audience would be interested in. Collect target audience insights and analyse them after each content you post to use them when you plan your next content. Aside from giving highlights of the attractions you feature, be sure to time your promotions and give exclusive offers that your audience won’t find anywhere else.
Promote the content on a proper platform.
Social media platforms differ in their audiences. Therefore, marketers should carefully analyse where to best reach their target audience. For example, if a hotel provides many activities suitable for teenagers, the main platform to promote them on should be the one that targets teenagers. On the other hand, if your hotel targets older adults, you may use the social media platform that this demographic regularly uses. It’s recommended to start with only one channel and add new platforms as your target audience expands.
Regularly update your social media.
Your content plan should include what content you plan to post and how often you plan to post so you can post regularly. Posting regular content allows audiences to keep your brand top of mind, builds trust and authority, and increases the chances that your content will be shared.
Strategy 2: Use Performing SEO
Aside from using social media, digital travel marketing research also found that over 80% of travellers use search engines to look for information and plan their trips, including booking their flights and hotels. For this reason, if marketers should take advantage of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) strategies to reach and eventually convert their target audience to avail their product or service.
We share some things to keep in mind when using Performing SEO:
Create a business website.
Any business that wants to reach a wider audience needs to develop its website to share information and other relevant content. Hotel websites, for instance, share important information about their rooms and facilities and sometimes include visitor reviews. An effective UX/UI design is needed to keep your users engaged, which is one of the factors to help your site rank higher and be more discoverable on search engines.
Input keywords in your articles and across the website.
When you finish creating your website, the next step is inputting important keywords that travellers usually use when searching for information. Marketers can use Google Keyword Planner to get a list of keywords and their search volumes to find out what to include in appropriate places throughout the website.
Also, the keywords can be used in the blog content that features relevant or related topics to the business. It’s best practice to insert those related keywords in the headline, content, and meta description. To increase the site’s SEO score, regularly modify the website according to SEO strategy, both on-page and off-page, and maintain consistent website quality.
Strategy 3: Engage in Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is another strategy to promote travel businesses. In China, for example, Weibo and Ctrip have launched a livestream campaign where the famous influencer Liang Jianzhang cosplayed as Bao Bun Jin to promote tourism. The campaign was seen by over 10.19 million stream viewers, which resulted in up to 48,000 rooms being booked per night and the Eastern Airlines special flight tickets being sold out in 3 minutes. This is considered a huge success using an influencer strategy.
Case Study: Dusit Thani, a Hotel Business that Uses SEO Strategy to Optimise Its Website
Dusit Thani is a hospitality group providing accommodation services: hotels and resorts in Bangkok and other tourist cities in Thailand. This travel business successfully benefits from implementing an SEO strategy to boost marketing outcomes.
Digital Marketing Goals
Dusit Thani aims to use an organic strategy like performing SEO to increase search results on a global scale. The goal is to optimise its local SEO websites to suit the location of Dusit Thani in 20 locations from 14 countries to minimise the costs of buying high-value advertising media.
Implementing SEO strategy
When Dusit Thani assigned Primal Digital Agency, a digital marketing specialist, to oversee SEO on its website. Primal’s experts helped in auditing and devising in-depth SEO plans and optimising the website quality on-page and off-page to make Dusit Thani a highly discoverable website and generate more revenue.
Upon implementing the SEO strategic plans devised by a travel digital marketing agency, Dusit Thani’s website saw up to 630% growth in keyword search rates on Google’s first page. Moreover, Dusit Thani generated up to 123.5 times higher returns from its SEO efforts (Return on SEO spend) within a year!
With the revival of the travel industry post-pandemic, businesses need to adapt to the change in travellers’ needs and behaviours. Implementing online marketing strategies is a must to stay ahead of competitors and reach their target audience–both existing and potential ones.
For travel businesses looking for success in digital marketing, contact Primal Digital Agency. We have over 150 specialists ready to take care of your marketing plans and help you implement effective strategies that bring results. Book a consultation with us today!