For a travel company selling “experiences” is the challenge. Simply because a holiday is exactly that…an experience, a melting pot of sights, sounds, smells, locales, boarding and lodging and fun, seclusion, romance.
All of these elements are subjective and in that lies the challenge. Selling an experience is never easy but is there another way?
I love travelling and that’s why I chose to write about travel companies and how they are using Facebook to advertise and promote their tours, packages and services. My picks…the WOW Club, Breakaway and Strawberi Holidays, here’s what and why:
The WOW Club (Women on Wanderlust) a travel company catering to the discerning woman traveler run by Sumitra Senapaty has carved a niche for itself as a premium travel company for women.
Breakaway, a fairly new entrant to the travel business, aims at providing bespoke, customized travel experiences off the beaten track (pun intended) and Starwberi holidays, an arm of Kesari travels which specializes in creating packaged tours as per customer needs and requirements.
I chose these three companies because they are catering to different market segments and I was interested in pointing out how they are using the same medium…Facebook, to promote and influence fans. Here’s what I found
Announcing New Trips
Announcing a new travel tour or package deal is something all these companies use Facebook for, simply because it helps them get the word around quickly at virtually no cost at all.
When the WOW club came out with a Mom n Me tour for women and kids it took this announcement to its Facebook page. This evinced the interest of many a mom who wanted her kids to travel with her.
Similarly Breakaway used its Facebook page to build up interest in its walk in the lanes endeavor during the upcoming Ganesh festival.
An offbeat event which includes a visit to a Maharashtrian household to witness the aarti and then on to a traditional meal wound up with a chat and a snack, their Facebook page did not give all the details of the event but lead to their website where they were listed.
A photo journey is really all that it takes to get people interested in a locale, trip or tour. While it might not become the selling point for the company, it certainly helps them ignite interest.
The WOW postcards and memories albums are examples of this, the former being a collection of pictures from exotic locales and the latter being an album showcasing pictures from their various tours.
Just one picture with a promise to explore the road not taken is what I found worked for me with the Breakaway update on a Textile tour to hitherto untraveled parts.
A picture of spools of colorful threads with a promise to explore India’s rich textile heritage…the right blend of an image with the joy of anticipation and the thrill of things to come!
Call to Action
Getting people to act is the crux of any marketing campaign and it is no different with a social media marketing campaign.
Getting travel enthusiast to respond to their call to action, the WOW Club posts pictures and announces how many spots are left, signing off with a …”grab your spot now” works wonders for those who need that little push to make up their minds and book their spot.
Strawberi holidays too brandish attractive photo albums now and then to get people to book their spot at a discount or special price.
The magic of words and quotes to describe travel experiences is something I came across on the Facebook page of Breakaway. A quote with an apt picture is just what could get people thinking about packing their travel bags and truly breaking away for a while!
As a social media marketing platform Facebook gives these travel companies the benefits of:
- Access to a Huge Fan Base
- Maximum Exposure at Minimum Cost
- Photo sharing (very essential to tourism marketing simply because travel is such a visual experience to begin with)
- The Power of influence (through travel experiences shared by former travelers)
What these companies can explore further are possibilities of:
- Using Apps: to let travelers create travel experiences for sharing and greater involvement and engagement
- Personalizing the travel experience: This can be done through photo albums by travelers, feedback or providing travelers with the opportunity to write about their experiences on the company’s blog and linking it to Facebook.
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