3 Social Marketing Tweaks for Tricky Times | TravelResearchOnline


3 Social Marketing Tweaks for Tricky Times


Do your marketing plans from 2019 seem totally out of touch now?

Did your marketing projections for 2020 fly out the window in March?

Even as we stare out the window wishing for the good old days, there are 3 things we can tweak now so that our social marketing is fresh and dialed-in when the uptick in travel demand hits.


Your Niche

“Re-imagining” is something that we as business owners don’t do very often. Since our industry is changing every day, it’s now the right time to re-imagine our traditional niche markets to see if there’s another niche that may work better.

A tour operator client of mine is re-thinking his list of destinations and working on more regional and domestic destinations rather than international.

A travel advisor I know is tweaking her specialty to focus on weddings and events.

As you contemplate and potentially change your own niche market, remember to tweak your:

  • Social bios
  • Cover images
  • Key words and hashtags (#)
  • Audience ad targeting


Hashtag Habits

Even if your niche market hasn’t changed since COVID, now’s a great time to think about how your clients and social fans may be expressing their interest in your niche.

For many people, this expression comes in the form of which hashtags, represented by the symbol # (For example, #onvacation), they use.

In 2019, the most popular hashtag was #Disney followed closely by #AppleAirPods.

So far, in 2020, the most popular is #PhotoOfTheDay followed by #InstaGood (referring to the #InstaPod trend in home cooking)

Did you find that pre-Covid your clients were using a select set of hashtags when mentioning you or the destinations you serve in their own social posts? Back then, you were able to join conversations and mirror those # successes. In these changing times, how about researching which # are popular with your clients right now. I suspect they’ve started using other # that reflect the choices of your potential clients. For example, maybe you’re finding that the # you used in 2019 aren’t working as well anymore. Now’s a great time to rethink your # and what’s working, as we transition into the next normal. This will help you continue to reach the right people.

Of course, that’s not all. Tweaking the key words in your marketing to align with your niche, #, and our changing industry will keep your content fresh and inspiring.


Strengthen Relationships

Thru thick and thin, you have a base of clients that have been your bread & butter… right? They travel with you frequently; they share your social content, and they inspire their friends to join your tours.

Staying in touch with these people is essential. However, keeping the pipeline open for new clients is critical as we move forward. What’s the easiest way to do this? Video!

That’s right, VIDEO! Not only does video bring your company to life, it’s a key way to stay top of mind with your clients in a time when many of your client encounters won’t be in person.

Video can take many forms:

  • Live Stream on your favorite social site
  • Video Conferencing using Zoom or Skype
  • Socially posted video you shoot in your office or home
  • Embedding video into your e-blasts is simple with Loom
  • Animated posts that grab attention in feed

Savvy marketers are tweaking their video content, style, and production – so they can maximize their brand awareness.

Proactive tourism pros are focusing more on live stream conversations on social platforms, where their clients hang out. Many are leveraging relationships with suppliers and going live together. Here’s how to do this together but in separate locations

Marketing rock stars in our industry are producing virtual tours.

Media mavens are jumping in front of the camera and shooting a series of video updates. Many are showcasing reminiscences of past tours. Make sure you get the tech right and ace your next video.

Do you simply need to update your clients or staff on the features of a new app or on-line tool? Loom is perfect for showing how to do an on-line task. It’s screen recording made simple!

Animated posts are the talk of the town. It’s so easy to add these scroll-stopping wonders into your social posting routine. Here’s a couple of examples along with the tools I use to create these animated posts.



Growing and strengthening your client list is do-able with this one easy, but advanced tweak. Give something away! That’s right your lead magnet is a game changer as we prep for the future. Here’s some creative lead magnet content ideas.



These small tweaks can easily be integrated into your social strategy. The result will be a fine-tuned, nimble marketing routine to take you into the future of travel… no matter what that turns out to look like.


Catherine Heeg, International speaker & trainer, focuses on social media marketing strategies for the tourism and hospitality industry. Connect with her at www.cmsspeaking.com and socially.

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