You’ve probably noticed that storytelling is one of the hot new trends in content marketing. There are even people in a company who are the “storytellers” who can formulate their brand into a relatable narrative, one that resonates with customers and doesn’t hard sell. And we all know that telling a story is a sure-fire way to get people engaged in your website, social media and email content, before you bring on the call-to-action and a possible sale.
Before you get worried that you’re not on this new trend, just take a deep breath and relax. Telling a story about your business doesn’t involve having a PhD in creative writing or being adept in narrative structure. When you want to tell a story about your business, you’re simply take branding to another level. You are making it so that your audience can connect with you on a deep, personal level – one that resonates with them, gives them memorable travel experiences, encourages them to recommend your company to friends, and keeps them loyal.
Does that sound like a lot of work? Well, it can be. Or you can follow this Tnooz article written by Pamela Whitby, editor of EyeforTravel, who details seven ways for travel businesses to tell their own unique stories.
Cross channel integration works
This is just a fancy way to say use all kinds of promotions at your disposal…but especially mobile. Just in this half-decade alone, use of smartphones and tablets for travel purposes has increased 394%. So you need to hit all channels – digital, social, mobile, and even print if your budget allows. According to Whitby, you need to take this approach to amplify your storytelling, increase your impact from all channel impressions, and encourage more conversions.
Social content engages
To tell your story right, you want to make sure that the content you create match up with social media channels that you’re posting on. While you might have a general buyer persona or demographic of your typical customer, your social content can convey your messages in different ways. For instance, Facebook and Tumblr postings tend to rely more on copy, while Instagram, YouTube Pinterest are visual. Make sure you hit your audience from all angles.
Photography and user-generated content can co-exist peacefully
One of the big trends in marketing now is “UGC, ” or user-generated content. It’s a great way to involve your audience and customers to promote your storytelling, and it lends an air of credibility to your brand. But in order to make that story stick, quality photography from a professional or amateur will give that “wow” factor that make people remember what your company is all about. So consider using both in your marketing.
Write copy that draws people in and keeps them there
You want to write copy and content that makes people want to keep reading. That could mean positioning yourself as a luxury brand but pair it with an irreverent message, just Kimpton Hotels does. Their storyline in a nutshell is “luxury without the attitude.” Or with an adventure travel company, it could be having adrenaline thrills, but taking an educational (but fun) tone with your copy.
Here’s where you want to take the experiences of your customers and translate them into living, breathing campaigns. It’s just a matter of developing a picture of being in the center of the activity, whether that’s biking the vineyards in Provence or whitewater rafting down the Colorado River. Make sure that you’ve looked at any customer testimonials for nuggets of authentic moments.
Make it vivid
It doesn’t matter if your story brands convey luxury, fun or hip – choosing the right colors will cement the message you want to convey to the traveling public. It helps define your identity and anchor it in the minds of your audience. Certain hotels find a certain accent color in their image, then find one that compliments that chosen hue. Plus, nearly everyone responds positively to colors instead of monochromes.
Videos convert but don’t need to be expensive
Some of the best videos ever created originated from a smartphone video camera. At the same time, the person filming your destinations or people experiencing your vacations needs to have a good eye and know their way around with video production. As Kimpton does with their effective videos, you also need to have them authentic and intimate in tone.
How can you use these seven strategies outlined by Whitby to tell your travel company’s story? Share your thoughts below!