The way in which many companies communicate with and market to their target demographics have changed drastically because of social media and digital presence. Especially for the travel and tourism sector, the rise of the Internet and the increased popularity of social channels has brought a major change in various marketing trends. Majority of the traveler’s research destinations they are interested in and the activities that they want to participate in once they arrive at that destination. The new ways that consumers use social media to make purchasing decisions have influenced tourism marketing from start to finish. Here are a few recent changes in digital trends in the tourism industry –
- Reshaping Travel Agencies– Digital Media has had a huge impact on the travel agency model. The easy availability of information, self-service and convenience of booking destinations, airfare, and hotels at the click of a button shifts the attention to digital tourism marketing from the previously used brick and mortar system.
- Rise in Social Sharing – People have always loved sharing pictures and videos of their vacations. Social media has visibly increased people’s ability to share travel experiences with a wider audience. This trend hasn’t gone unnoticed. Many hotels and resorts have started running various kinds of social contests and campaigns to ensure that they get some credit for their guest’s activities and posts. These digital marketing strategies for travel brands include campaigns which generally encourage guests to take photos, tag them with a hashtag and ultimately to create user-generated content for the brand that was free, authentic and repurposed across its marketing channels.
- Travel Research transformed – The impact of digital trends in travel is clearly seen because today’s travelers go online to research their future travel destinations and accommodations. Content posted by people online results in decisions on where to travel and which places to visit in the location you are traveling.
- Enhanced Customer Service – In every business, customer satisfaction and services are of prime importance. A vast majority of businesses have social media platforms to make the customers aware about products. It also serves as a platform to answer customer queries and see a product or service. When Twitter users contact a brand, more than half expect a response. Responding to complaints and questions helps to humanize your brand and to indicate to current and future customers that they are valued.
There are various digital marketing trends of tourism which have grown in these recent years. The latest digital trends in tourism industry for marketing include –
- Mobile Messaging and Marketing – The ever-increasing growth and adoption rates of apps on the mobile phone such as WhatsApp, Snapchat, Messenger, and Instagram were first seen as great opportunities for marketers seeking to reach out to younger demographics. While these platforms remain elusive from an advertising standpoint, we’re clearly seeing an emerging trend for hotels and airlines to engage with their customer base via these popular apps.
- Virtual reality(VR)- It is a computer technology that uses Virtual reality headsets, to generate realistic images, sounds and other sensations that simulate a user’s physical presence in a virtual or imaginary environment. It is already on the cusp of hitting the mainstream and not a day goes by without a mention of a destination, hotel brand or event planner making new use of this technology.
- Live Streaming – There are numerous ways to live stream an event or product launch nowadays, using Facebook live, Instagram live and Snapchat, where there is an element of raw interactions, even though it’s not live per se. If travel brands are slow to embrace these digital marketing trends of tourism, we can expect travel bloggers and influencers to lead the way.
Companies can make use of these digital tourism marketing trends to promote tourism and traveling in many ways. Using Snapchat for snap stories, Instagram for live videos and stories, Facebook for its live streaming and many other social media platforms for similar functions can increase the audience and attract more customers to travel to particular destinations and visit various places. Hence, these digital marketing strategies for travel brands can increase both, travel and tourism majorly. Social media is a boon to this industry and it has proved time and again, that the correct form of digital tourism marketing can result in converting a place into a tourist destination and increasing profits on a high scale.