With 3.78 billion users, social media is a great way for travel advisors to reach current and prospective clients.
“Social media around the world is ever-increasing and is, without a doubt, one of the most popular online activities that internet users engage in,” says Ernie Balint, GPS at G Adventures. “Social media platforms are also more accessible than ever before, offering mobile apps for ease of access when on the go, making social media more important than ever to connect, grow and build your brand.”
Increasingly, potential buyers are also turning to social media networks for reviews and recommendations, which can also impact travel decisions.
“It’s essential to have a prominent online presence on various social media platforms to ensure you’re covering all your basis for maximum exposure,” Balint says. “Social media allows you to access cost-effective marketing, interact with your audience, and build brand loyalty.”
Notably, the demographics using social media are increasingly wide-ranging.
“The number of social media users are increasing across all age demographics and aren’t segmented to just the millennials and Gen Z population,” he says. “The numbers are increasing as more baby boomers start to adopt social media and Smartphones into their lives.”
Another reason why agents should consider capitalizing on social media comes down to the numbers. People spend an average of 2.5 hours per day on social media!
“Scrolling through the countless number of status updates, reshared news stories and memories on Facebook to endlessly scrolling through pictures and tapping through stories on Instagram, 2.5 hours a day may seem like a lot, but in all fairness the time passes quickly,” he says. “Social media is becoming more integrated into our daily lives, it unveils countless opportunities for businesses who are looking to reach out to their audience through social media marketing.”
Rather than spreading yourself too thin keeping on top of an unmanageable amount of social media accounts, Courtney Hall, Global Social Media Specialist for G Adventures, suggests focusing on Facebook and Instagram. These platforms are the most widely used and are well suited for travel related content.
“Facebook is still the most widely used platform with 68% of US adults having an account,” she says. “And Instagram stories has seen a huge increase from 150 million users in 2017 to 500 million in 2019, which I’d say is much higher since the pandemic and people being glued to their phones. Remember, Instagram stories is a great place to put that authentic trust-building content.”
Hall also stresses that authenticity builds trust and trust sells.
For those who are just getting started, Balint suggests taking a look at what peers and colleagues are doing to successfully attract followers, clients and business.
“Use their content as examples on how to curate content and create great engaging posts for your own community,” he adds.
How to Grow Your Community
Social Media sits in the dreaming phase of marketing and it first takes time to engage, grow, and build trust within your industry and followers. Here are some helpful starting points:
How to Engage Your Community
Dreamy content, interaction with followers, consistency and authenticity builds trust.
Social media tips for success
How To Keep The Conversation Going…
“Receiving and converting inquiries from social media into sales is not always easy,” says Balint. “It can be one of the most difficult and daunting parts of the sales funnel. The important thing to remember is that just like with any other sale, there is that potential for rejection and hearing ‘no,’ but adopting some of these tips and making them your own will eventually result in a new client and a potential future sale. Just like with everything, it will take time and practice, so stick with it.”
Here are a few tips: