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    Attention 2020 Travel Marketers

    COVID-19 has changed everyone’s world but if you’re in the travel or hospitality industry the changes have been devastating. Bankrupt airlines, massive layoffs—okay, you read the news, too. Sorry. The point is, things will bounce back for travel the same way many industries will return and welcome the ‘new normal’. So, we thought we could intervene in a news cycle or two and offer a distraction for DMO’s. What better time to churn out the content needed to support new campaigns and initiatives than when we’re all supplied with some forced downtime.

    Moving forward together

    If you’re reading this, you’re probably looking for a few fresh ideas to attract potential travelers this season. No doubt, more attention than ever is focused online so the landscape can be competitive. Let’s talk about some digital campaigns and concepts you can start developing today.

    Write destination-specific travel articles

    Yes, this is an old staple, but for good reason. Guides walking potential travelers through travel tips, things to buy, hidden destinations drive traffic, and have been proven to boost brand engagement—but you can’t just take a stab in the dark on topics and locations. Do some keyword research first, either using a free tool like SEMrush or Google Keyword Planner. While it may be tempting to write for the highest search volume, those terms are highly competitive and ranking will be difficult. It’s a balance of good search volume and low competition.

    Now that you have some topics, begin researching and writing. Here are some writing tips and best practices we’ve supplied over the years

    Target segments on a larger scale

    Market segmentation isn’t persona research. Sure, they’re very similar tools that group current and potential customers into manageable buckets but you can’t create a detailed buyer’s persona without first diving into market research. Specifically, personas are used to encourage design for real people with real needs. Where segmentation aims to pinpoint and measure the size of different groups at a high-level, personas break down the user’s context, needs, motivations, and pain points on a more intimate basis.

    Considering the travel market is far too large and diverse to reach effectively, tourism marketers use segmentation to better understand customer needs and allocate marketing dollars effectively. Effective segmentation is based on extensive quantitative research focusing on large numbers of people and grouping them together based-upon shared characteristics such as demographics, behavioral patterns, or cognition ratings. Once identified, these groups are referred to as particular segments and able to be targeted by particular product offerings, services, and tailored marketing messages.

    Don’t ignore email

    Email marketing through newsletters is still one of the most cost-effective marketing tactics available. This stat is a few years old, but according to ConstantContact, for every buck you spend on email marketing you can expect a return of nearly $40. When planning content, focus on local, seasonal events, use plenty of visuals, and try and avoid any sentence longer than a headline and CTA. If you’re writing destination articles, as we mentioned above, this can be the perfect approach to promote those blogs. For inspiration, start subscribing to other DMO newsletters and you may be surprised what you find.

    Reach out if you need help

    We’re happy to take a look at your current content marketing efforts and see how we can add value. Gravitate understands the needs of travel marketers and identifies key touchpoints throughout the cycle, connects trip planners to the answers they’re searching for, and ultimately, highlights your destination in the best possible light.