As summertime is nearly here, all the tourism stakeholders are actively preparing the vacation season. At a time when over 76% of the travelers rank the smartphone in their favorites travel accessories (™ Mobile Travel Tracker), each tourism-related player cannot disregard a solid digital strategy.

Understand the touchpoints

In order to bring the tourists spending some money in your property, the first step is to analyze the whole traveler’s journey, and identify the touchpoints: these specific moments when you can reach your target. There are so many!

Prior to the trip, you’ll find at least three important touchpoints: the inspirational stage (when the future tourist is looking for inspiration for his next vacations), the ground-purchasing stage (transportation tickets + accommodation), the journey preparation (destination activities). During the trip, there are also some touchpoints: airport/railway station, onboard entertainment systems (click here for more info),… Finally, once arrived at their accommodation, you benefit from additional touchpoints: outdoor display, in-hotel promotion, …

Clearly said, you benefit from a wide range of relevant touchpoints to reach your target.

Google Ads are not the Magic Potion

However, one can easily notice that there is a huge gap between marketing gurus, highly accurate on every new digital marketing trends, and local property owners or communication managers. Although these latter are aware about the travelers’ digitalization, most of them take a too-easy short cut: DIGITAL = GOOGLE. Then the digital investments are summed up in a website (mostly without any attention paid to SEO), facebook page and Google Ads.

There is yet an effective way to engage your audience: the content marketing

Your business is to create happiness

Once you’ve selected the relevant touchpoints for your activity, you have to decide with which message you want to reach the inbound tourist. At this stage you have several possibilities: full advertising content (“Eat At Joe’s”), content that you produce (“Discover how our chief selects the best products at Joe’s”), user generated content (Tripadvisor,…), … There is not one magic solution, but it’s a “holy mix” that you need to hatch.

The good news is that your activity is so emotion-rich that you have all the material that you need just under your feet. Should you be a restaurant, a diving center, an entertainment venue, a city tour…Your business is to create happiness! Tell to your targets how your passion and your expertise can generate an emotional trip, that will enlighten the tourist’s journey. Show the happiness of your customers, let them talk about you through texts, videos and pictures.

And then, dig into your own gold mine of content, to inspire your target with such material…at every selected touchpoint.