Have you ever wondered how to effectively market to the group travel industry? Marketing in general has changed substantially over the years, and navigating the options and selecting the right choices can be a daunting task. Tour operators are inundated with information and standing out is critical to your overall success. So, how do you do it?
Chris Miranda from Redpoint Marketing PR sums the answer up best, “Better to do a few thoughtful initiatives exceptionally well, than to dabble in a dozen different directions.”
During the 2011 Group Travel Supplier Summit, Miranda shared a few important tips to consider when outlining a budget wisely.
- Look at your total resources – Be sure to think about the total time spent and staffing hours dedicated when looking at a marketing initiative and doing it well. Whether its going to trade shows, writing a blog, creating a Facebook page, or sponsoring an event, be sure to look at the total time invested in the opportunity before you determine whether it makes sense for your plan.
- Know your audience – Determine who you are trying to reach and ensure your budget meets that audience. In addition, don’t forget to allocate funds from you budget to client retention. In most cases, it’s more cost effective to maintain existing clientele vs. marketing for new business.
- Make deliberate choices – Just because you’ve always done something doesn’t mean you need to do it again. Make decisions based on your total resources and your audience. In doing so, you will be making wise choices and impacting your overall ROI. That being said, realize that your ROI might not happen overnight. Give it time.
- Make sure you have the basics covered – Before you start creating an in-depth marketing campaign, it is critical to ensure the basics are taken care of. Be sure your website has content relevant to the group travel market. Collateral material should be current and tell your message, and your photography should be up-to-date. If these things aren’t where you think they should be, start there.
It is critical to have a good foundation on which to build your marketing plan. Be sure to start there and make conscious decisions about what you choose to do after that.