In its infancy, the internet was a place where people could research and gather information. However, it has practically transformed into a different dimension — a separate world from the one where we physically live and one that significantly influences your brand development. The influence of the internet on tours, activities and attractions can’t be understated.
The internet is embedded into the very fabric of our daily lives. No longer is it something that people check into when they are sitting at their desk; rather, it’s a living being that travels with us constantly. As a tour and activity operator, this means that your online visibility and brand image play a more important role than the actual office that you operate or the tours that you provide.
This is how the internet influences your tour and activity company:
It allows you to become a global brand
Before the internet, you had to work hard to develop a professional network with travel agents and distributors in hopes of getting your brand recognized on a global scale. Now, with the internet, you can launch your company and be a global name in a matter of moments. Social media is a fast and affordable way to connect with consumers on a personal level, while search engine optimization allows you to increase your visibility online. An online marketing strategy and distribution strategy can help you reach your target audience in every corner of the world.
It leaves you at the mercy of online reviews and feedback
Online reviews are a blessing and a curse for tour and activity operators. On one hand, positive reviews provide critical social proof to other consumers who are searching for information about your tours and activities. Travelers rely heavily on this objective feedback when making their decisions for their upcoming vacations. Conversely, one frustrated customer can start an online firestorm that is difficult to quell. It can be overwhelming to find out that someone has left negative feedback about your brand online, but it’s important to use this as an opportunity to showcase your commitment to customer service. The social nature of the internet today has an immeasurable influence on your brand identity, but you can control the narrative if you stay active and engaged with your consumers online.
It provides you with a chance to connect with your travelers
The internet allows you to be more than just a business to your target audience. With social media and interactive websites, you can create a human connection with your travelers before they ever book your tours and activities. Ultimately, this allows you to form a better, more powerful relationship with your consumers at every stage of the online booking journey.
The internet has shifted the power between brands and consumers. While it may be intimidating to realize just how much nameless faces on the internet can influence your brand, it’s important to know that there’s a lot you can do to control your brand messaging and imaging online. The key is to create an online marketing strategy that is geared specifically toward your tour and activity brand. With a strategic plan in place, you’ll find that the rest falls into place quite easily.
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