As more people are getting vaccinated, the travel industry has seen a huge increase. Since the pandemic has been incredibly hard on the tourism industry, regional destinations are undoubtedly relieved about the uptick in visitors.
Tourism companies who are still at max capacity might be so busy that they aren’t even thinking about marketing. After all, business is booked, so why focus on more? But advertising during peak seasons (and down seasons) pays off more than companies realize.
Being booked solid comes with clear reasons to celebrate, but it doesn’t mean planning goes out the window. Marketing during busy months is worth it for a few crucial reasons.
1. Thinking Ahead Pays Off
Before people take off for their seasonal vacation, they are typically planning. Many will plan out their vacations months ahead of time, which means they’ll be in a state of mind to see what you have to offer. Even if travelers aren’t immediately booking, they’re still thinking about what they’re going to do for spring or summer vacation.
If you market your destination in advance, potential customers will see your messaging and remember you for their next trip in a future season. And if you’re offering just what they need, they might book right on the spot.
Pushing messaging related to a future season ensures you’re on peoples’ minds well before deciding to book, leading to more bookings year-round.
2. You Can Market to Those Already in Your Region
This year more than ever, travelers will embrace regional destinations. According to a 2021 study from booking.com on future travel trends:
- 43% of people plan to visit a new location within their own country or region.
- 46% of people want to embrace staycations by staying local
Understandably, many people are still hesitant to venture out too far. They might start by exploring their own city, state, or another location they can get to by car.
What does this mean for regional destinations when people are vacationing nearby? It offers a huge opportunity to upsell through marketing. Instead of selling vacationers on a destination they’ve already booked, target what they need next.
Create blog posts or video content covering fun things to do in the city, the best eating places, or what to expect while they’re here. Research what people want to do in your region the most during this season. Then, sell them on offerings that enhance their regional vacation experience.
3. Promote Sustainable Tourism Practices
Another approach you can take during busy times is marketing sustainable tourism. Use the opportunity to promote eco-friendly practices and talk about measurable impacts from your efforts. Social media hashtags like #RecreateResponsibly and outdoor ethics principles like Leave No Trace can have a considerable impact.
4. You Can Still Build Your Email List
Email marketing provides direct contact between you and potential customers. If you get people on your email list during the busy seasons, you can market to them throughout the year. Plus, people who have been interested enough in your brand to provide their email are more likely to book with you.
You can build up your email list by:
- Providing a free (yet valuable) opt-in in exchange for email addresses on your website
- Including a sign-up form on your social media accounts and website
- Running giveaways or contests that include people providing their emails
Just make sure that everyone knows they’ll be added to your email list and what they can expect from you. Then, you can send exclusive offers, deals, and other valuable tips that will keep you on travelers’ minds when they think about their next getaway.
Seasonal travel can look different for every regional destination. Companies should ensure they know their target audience — and how traveler demographics change throughout the year.
Think about what visitors will search online before and during their stays, and consider what they’ll want most during their vacation. Doing this throughout the year will help you stay ahead of the competition during busy months, off-seasons, and everything in between.
For tailored help with your destination marketing needs, contact Advance Travel and Tourism today!