One of the major challenges for travel businesses is standing out from competitors. increased competition in the industry has made it harder for brands to be unique through simple advertising. Fortunately, there are several other tools and strategies travel brands can leverage to remain relevant.
One of the methods that are currently popular among travel brands is public relations (PR). As the guys at 8020 Communications indicate, unline advertising, travel PR involves creating awareness for a travel company by promoting a positive brand image. This, in turn, helps to connect with the brand’s audience, engage them, and create excitement about the brand. As a result, the company is able to enjoy a favourable climate, which makes it easier to advertise, generate leads, and convert them to sales.
The effectiveness of travel PR, however, is in using the right PR tools and strategies. Below is a look at some of the top travel PR tactics that are popular among big brands.
Attending and speaking at industry events
Industry events are not just an opportunity to network, speak and/or lecture people on your brand, or have a good time. They can be an important opportunity for promoting your travel brand. In fact, event marketing has become quite popular in recent years to the extent that it is one of the top promotional tools for businesses.
Travel businesses are, however, doing more than just marketing at events; they are using PR to promote their brands. By attending and being visible at industry events such as trade shows and conferences, they gain a lot of exposure for their brands. This exposure can then be used to promote products and services, share information with consumers, counter customer concerns, and increase brand loyalty and confidence.
On top of that, speaking at industry events is a great PR tactic that travel brands use to promote a positive brand image. Speaking engagement helps to establish a brand as an authority in the industry, thus building confidence with the consumers. It is also a great way to interact with the right audience and build awareness about the brand.
Posting and engaging consumers on social media
Social media is one of the top marketing tools that is being used by businesses today. However, it can be just a powerful public relations tool for travel companies. With instant access to millions of consumers, social media is a godsend to public relations.
Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are a great way for travel brands to engage their audience and promote a positive brand image. The instant communication of social media makes it a great tool for crisis management. Travel companies can use these platforms to respond to negative reviews and perceptions, and also, promote a positive image to counteract any negative press.
Releasing messages through mainstream media channels
Mainstream media is another popular PR tactic used by travel brands. Media channels play an important role in a travel brand’s PR strategy. They can be used to offer accurate information about a brand and its products and services through fact sheets, media statements, and press releases.
Mainstream media is also a great way for travel companies to promote a positive brand image. They can run advertorials with positive messages about the brand. They can also be used to counteract negative press, especially in times of crisis. And due to the credibility of these third-party media platforms, their effectiveness in reaching and engaging with the audience is unrivaled.
Regularly releasing press releases
Using press releases is another travel PR tactic that intertwines with leveraging mainstream media. Press releases are a great way to create awareness for a brand through tactics such as:
- Announcing the launch of new products and services
- Informing consumers and other stakeholders of a brand’s milestone achievements
- Informing consumers about growth opportunities and expansion plans
- Releasing statements to counter negative press and/or reputation
Travel brands, or the travel PR companies they hire to manage their PR strategies, then use mainstream media to disseminate these press releases to the right audience.
Leveraging sponsorships and partnerships
Sponsorships and partnerships are another top PR tactic used by travel brands. Sponsoring events, especially non-profitable events such as charities, fundraisings, community sports events, and others build a lot of goodwill, brand loyalty, and positive brand image. Brands also enjoy a lot of exposure during these events, especially since they are usually covered by media.
Partnerships, on the other hand, involve partnering with other brands, organisations, and even industry influencers. These partnerships help to increase awareness of the brand. Partnering with the right brands, organisations, and individuals can also help consumers to perceive a brand in a positive image.
Using employees as brand ambassadors
Employees are another invaluable public relations tool for a travel brand. Since they are part of a business’ brand image, consumers pay a lot of attention to what they say or think about their employers. Therefore, employees who think their company is a great place to work for can help to improve the company’s brand significantly.
The value of employees to a brand is something that some of the top travel companies have realised. As a result, they place a lot of emphasis on employee relations to help improve the workplace culture and the employee’s perception. Consequently, these employees become good brand ambassadors who not only help to improve and maintain a company’s positive image. They also help to increase brand awareness when they mention the brand online – social media, reviews, etc. – and offline (friends, acquaintances, network circles, etc.)
Publishing regular blog posts
Blogging is another tool that is traditionally used for advertising. However, PR specialists have also perfected the art of using blogs for public relations. Due to their wide online reach, blogs are a great way of communicating with the consumers. A travel brand can thus use them to create and grow a positive relationship with the target audience. Blogs are also a perfect tool for storytelling – the one thing that PR focuses on.
Are you in need of promoting your travel business or improving its image? Travel PR can help you do that. Several top travel brands have realised the importance of PR, and are using various PR tactics to grow their brands. With some of the above tactics, you can also be able to grow your business significantly by increasing brand awareness and creating and maintaining a positive brand image.