How do you market your business tactfully during a pandemic?
And, what worked in the pre-COVID-19 days probably won’t work today.
This was the subject of a webinar we hosted in the spring with Fotaflo and Red River Gorge Ziplines, about how to market effectively and tactfully. In this post, we’re sharing several strategies you can use to re-engage past guests.
What’s User-Generated Content?
Your guests value the stories and memories from their experiences. However, so many of them rely on selfies, fuzzy action shots taken in the moment, or tour guides taking photos on the customers’ phones. (And, passing the phone will definitely be a no go moving forward with social distancing measures).
This is why apps like Fotaflo, which allow you to capture, upload, and give out photos to your guests, can be so beneficial from both the guest experience and brand marketing perspective.
Each UGC photo or video that you give out to guests is a marketing asset.
To guests, it is an intentional way to remember and relive a fun experience.
Right now, anything you do to get your customers to talk about their past experiences is more powerful than ever, since it keeps your brand top of mind and will remove some of your guests’ fears about being out and about again once stay at home orders get relaxed.
Photos and videos are the most important emotional triggers to assist with word of mouth marketing.
Send a re-engagement email campaign
The only thing you are really competing with right now in people’s inboxes is COVID-19 content. So, if you remind guests of their past memories on a tour or experience, they’ll be way more likely to open the email, click on the photos, and share them with their friends on social media.
This creates more brand awareness and advocates and leads for more business for you once you reopen.
As for the best photos to include in this email. It is all about the intentional booking photo. It’s not about having the perfect background or taking the photo at just the right moment. Instead, it is capturing the photo everyone wants, which is everyone smiling and having a great time, that no one gets when they are on vacation.
Encourage past guests to share on social media and review sites
This almost seems too obvious to include, but it is easy to overlook. Whether you are sending out a re-engagement campaign, or just posting on your social media channels, ask people to share their experiences with friends.
Pro Tip: Fotaflo creates a personalized web album and link with all of the photos from a guest’s experience. Whenever a guest shares a photo in the future, you can track it both within Fotaflo and Xola.
Remind guests of their past experiences throughout the year
In addition, use an app, such as Fotaflo, to schedule re-engagement email and text messages at key milestones throughout the year. For example, send a message and a photo on a guest’s birthday and on the one year anniversary of their experience.
This works in a similar way as Facebook Memories. Everyone likes to be reminded of a fun past experience. Many will end up sharing the memory with their friends on social media (more brand awareness for you) and potentially some new bookings from their friends.
Pro Tip: If you are sending happy birthday campaigns, you can take this a step further by including a personalized happy birthday video from a tour guide.
Create a retargeting ad campaign
Retargeting ads are the best way to drive return on investment (ROI) on a small budget. For example, you could create a small retargeting campaign for like $10/per month where you target all of your past customers who live within driving distance.
Many travel experts predict that staycations and day of experiences will be the first to return after stay at home orders get relaxed.
Running a retargeting campaign on Google, Facebook, and/or Instagram is a great way to remind past guests about their fun experiences and encourage them to book another trip in the future.
In sum, these are a few strategies you can use to market your tours and experiences tactfully right now.