Recent studies suggest that our friends’ social media activity has a growing influence on our travel purchasing behavior. Seeing friends’ posts/likes on Facebook, reviews on Trip Advisor or pictures on Instagram significantly deepens consumer interest.
And why not? We trust our friends and family’s opinion and take comfort in their advocacy (83% of TripAdvisor respondents said that they trust a travel recommendation from friends and family).
How does this affect your marketing?
Here’s a few suggestions:
- Publish compelling content. It’s “social” media, not “sales media.” The more interesting your content, more fans will interact and share it.
- Accelerate social evangelism by utilizing advanced tools like Flip.to, which enables new bookers to share their itinerary with their friends right inside your booking process.
- Hypertarget on Facebook: the largest social network now enables you to target friends of your fans or, target past guests (by their email address), encouraging them to become fans if they haven’t already
- Invite reviews on Trip Advisor: The review giant just launched a new tool called ReviewExpress. The simple tool enables you to email past guests and ask them to post a review on TripAdvisor.
However you are using social media, it’s all good… its the greatest free channel to travel marketers ever invented. Stay focused on delivering a great product experience and your delighted guests will become your greatest marketing asset, attracting their friends and family at no added cost.