In a world where virtual networks seem to trump the physical process, it’s no surprise that all different types of businesses are taking to social marketing. 1.78 billion people in the world are taking part in social networks and by 2020, one in four people on a global level will be on social media. Social Media are used by almost every industry
Almost every industry uses Social Media to reach potential customers, from education websites to e-commerce and travel portals. Let’s take a look how some of them take the advantage of the constant popularity of social media. Many of the top marketers feel that social media and marketing is essential in their industry these days. The question you might be asking is how can companies use social media to benefit their business and consumers? There are quite a few answers to that question.
According to The Guardian, social marketing is imperative in the customer related industries for one very simple reason: it’s where your customer base is. When people are away from home, they connect with the ones they love through social media networks. Sharing the details of their trip on social media is just as important as planning and booking it nowadays. In a recent survey, 23% of people in the book their trips using social media only.
Handle Customer Complaints Instantly
As far as customer complaints go, the travel industry has been in the forefront, due to the fact that customers are traveling and on the go, which means the easiest way for customers to complain about their travel inconveniences is through their social networks. Sometimes, being able to respond directly on Twitter to an unhappy customer is a gift, but other times, the complaints can go viral.
Take the ‘United Breaks Guitars’ incident. Country music singer Dave Carroll had his Taylor Guitar broken by United Airlines. He took to the internet–YouTube specifically to state his complaint. The video went viral and gave the airline a very bad reputation that lasted for quite a while. Being able to respond to customer complaints instantly is both a blessing and a curse … depending on which side of the fence you’re on.
Announce Travel Promotions
Social media makes it impeccably easy to announce last-minute travel details, holiday promos and discounts that you’re holding. Promotions no longer need to be planned months in advanced with social marketing. Have an excess amount of seats on flights to NOLA? Run a promotion that gets your Twitter followers and Facebook fans talking, if you additionally make a contest and offer via Twitter a night in a 5 Star hotel in New Orleans, I guarantee that you will be successful.
The best way to get your travel business noticed is by word-of-mouth, and thanks to the social media world, your mouth just got a lot bigger!
One thing the travel industry has always leaned itself to is photography; it’s an industry that’s lucky enough to always have a photo worth taking. Sites like Instagram, Pinterest, and even Facebook make it easier than ever to share your photos, but more importantly, get your users to share photos from their trips that couldn’t have been possible without your company!
Interactivity and customer engagement is crucial with social media and what better chance do you have at doing just that than when someone comes home from vacation? Everyone loves to show off their vacation pictures and you can create mutually beneficial situations by making this public.
Try creating boards on Pinterest that users can contribute to. This is a great way to interact with your customers and get the word out about your company. Every customer has a group of fans that could all be part of your potential target audience.
And this doesn’t just apply to the Travel industry, in fact; Pinterest boards can be beneficial to nearly any industry with a bit of creativity. You just have to visualize relatable objects that engage viewers. For example, APG Exhibits banner stands have pinned over 70 items and garnered over 80 followers:
As you can see, the board topics can be personalized – “inspiring quotes” and “music we love” gives their brand a more friendly disposition.
Locate Your Customers
With social media tools that allow you to ‘check in’ to certain places, it’s easier than ever to find out where your customers are traveling to most. Sites like Twitter, Facebook, FourSquare and Instagram all have location devices. It’s a great way to find out what kind of promotions your customers would like to see.Social media has made our lives a lot more convenient in a lot of ways. Traveling with social media keeps us connected 24/7, which is a marketer’s dream. If your business is part of the travel industry, you can’t afford not to take part in the latest social media platforms. It’s become a way of life for all of your customers and it’s time for it to be a way of life for your company as well.