Marketing tip: Now we do have the time
COVID-19 | LOCAL PROFESSIONAL ADVICE
Whilst there is a lot of uncertainty around when the travel industry both domestically and internationally will return to normal, there has never been a better time to sit down and take stock of your current business model, look for ways to pivot and innovate new products and services, investigate new opportunities, and look to target new audiences.
Pivot and innovate
- Zinc Port Douglas and many local food outlets have performed a successful pivot in their business identifying another business stream to keep them moving through the restrictions that have been placed on restaurants. By offering online orders for DIY meal kits, fresh produce boxes of vege, meat or seafood plus a delicious range of gourmet meals for pick up and delivery Zinc have successfully changed their business model to identify opportunities within the current constraints.
- Be seen, be heard
Although business is quiet now it is still important to keep posting to your social channels (though maybe not as frequently as you did previously). With the world self-isolating people are spending more time than ever before on social media and looking beyond the usual pages and sites that they tend to follow. Added to this, we are all spending more time thinking about things we want to tick off our bucket list or do when we are finally allowed back out in the ‘real world’. This presents a huge opportunity to engage with a highly captive audience and inspire them to travel and eventually book with you so you must ensure you can be seen and heard otherwise your competitors will secure those bookings when the consumer is ultimately ready to convert.
*Please remember to pin any important updates concerning your business hours or in relation to forward bookings/refunds to the top of your social page ideally with an email address or number that people can contact.
- Be real
Everyone around the world is being effected by COVID-19 in one way or another so you can talk about it and how it has effected your business and staff. Bear in mind though, while we love to be light hearted about these things we do need to also be sensitive to the ongoing situation around the world.
- Back to the future
We all look forward to going back to the good times pre COVID-19 but unfortunately we just don’t know when that might be (yet). Right now probably isn’t the best time to include a call to action to book in your posts but instead look at other ways you might be able to get the audience to engage so that further down the line, when those green shoots begin to appear, you will be perfectly placed to secure that booking.
- Think outside the box
If your business is not currently operating you might be stuck for new content to share. Take a look back through your social channel analytics and see what content has performed well in the past. Is there a theme running through these posts? Can you create a video of your top images or look at other ways to develop on this theme?
Another great idea is to explore live streams via your social channels. People love to see ‘behind the scenes’ footage or engage in Q&A sessions – just make sure you do a few trial runs before going live on your business page. The Wildlife Habitat Port Douglas did just this last Friday, holding a live Q&A session in the park which will now become a regular feature (every Wednesday at 10AM). FNQ Nature Tours have also changed their business model to adapt to the current situation and plan on running a virtual birdwatching and photography tour on Saturday 4th of April where participants can opt to pay to watch.
Have you tagged TEQ, TTNQ and Tourism Australia in your posts previously? If they share your content you’ve hit the jackpot.
- Think beyond Facebook, Instagram and Twitter
Now is a great time to check your social accounts and website content and ensure it is all up to date. If you’re a TPDD member and would like to update your listing, reach out to the TPDD team or update your details via the Member Dashboard.
If you haven’t already got a Google My Business listing or Tripadvisor profile look into creating one. Set aside time to respond to any new or outstanding reviews - if consumers have spent the time to review your business make sure you respond. Got some awesome videos? Create a YouTube channel and share them.
Tara Bennett is the Chief Executive Officer at Tourism Port Douglas Daintree (TPDD)
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