A successful marketing campaign for tour and activity operators

If you are looking to maximise bookings for your tour company, time the time to prepare a successful marketing campaign in advance.

Ask yourself what you want your tour operator marketing campaign to achieve and create an in-depth plan. Work out your business goals for the coming season and the number of bookings you need to secure.

Who is your target market for this campaign? Who are you trying to reach out to? Create a persona of a typical customer of yours, including age, gender, location etc. so you have a clear picture of who you are targeting.

What tours or activities do you provide that your target audience would enjoy? Pick 2 – 3 trips that would best suit their demands and create irresistible offers around that.

You can create discount codes for specific customer segments or send vouchers to customers who have already made a booking to encourage them to book another trip with you. Alternatively, you can also create valuable packages that bundle up all your exciting tours and allow customers to pick and choose dates and times that best suit their travel plans.

The timing of your marketing plan is crucial. Start marketing around 3 months before your specific tour is due to take place. Give yourself plenty of time to plan and execute your marketing campaign as you may want to make changes along the way.

It takes time for your potential customers to do their research and decide on a particular tour or trip and most of them will want to book in advance. If you have special tours planned for bank holidays, you should start marketing them at least 6 months in advance.

A successful marketing campaign for tour and activity operators is a must if you want to see bookings increase.

All campaign elements and communication outputs must be consistent with your brand, including its voice, tone, look and feel. Always include your business’ core message, your brand, your offer and your call to action.

Focus on 3-4 resources for your marketing campaign, such a Facebook Ads, Instagram Advertising, TripAdvisor, Google AdWords, your own blog and email marketing.

Now that you’ve got the details of the campaign down, how do you plan to execute it? Do you have the resources (i.e. time, money and knowledge) to carry it out? Delegate the tasks that need doing to the people most able to carry them out successfully.

Do your research to come up with rough estimates for this marketing campaign. Consider the number of hours this campaign will take up, your marketing budget (for both online and offline advertising) and the human resources that this will require.

Remember to give yourself plenty of time to plan and execute your marketing plan. Once you’ve launched your campaign, keep an eye on its performance and don’t be afraid to experiment with different content to see what draws the most engagement and converts curious browsers into paid bookings.

Partnering with another company

One of the best ways to market your tours is to partner with another company who will help you advertise your activities in return for an agreed commission. This way, the other company will take care of your advertising and promote your tours to the people most likely to book them.