Let's talk about content marketing.
As far as the travel industry goes, there are three categories of company. These can be called Type A, Type B, and Type C.
Type A understands that a blog is a powerful tool as both a piece of content marketing and SEO. They understand the power of a well optimised piece of content, how it can bring in customers and reassure them that they are making the right choice. These make up 48% of travel companies.
Type B are a little bit abstract. They understand that blogs are a fantastic tool but have not realised the type of content they are posting needs to coincide with the nature of what their customers want to hear about. These represent 6% of the population of travel companies.
Type C are those who are either unconvinced or oblivious to how blogs and content can be used. These guys make up the rest: they are the final 46%.
The truth can be broken down simply. Mathematically speaking there is a fantastic piece of cause and correlation between companies who have blogs and those who are the most successful. These two things are not intrinsically linked, but they are related in a roundabout way.
A little while back I wrote a blog on whether content marketing is worth it from a monetary perspective. The post drew on facts and statistics gathered by companies who had implemented content strategies and only 5% stated that they had made a loss after implementing their strategy. To further this 5% stated that they made more than 10x their money back through a well implemented blog. This is one of the reasons we, at CAB Studios, have our own blog. We see a return on investment on it every month. It is worth it as a means of exposure and substantiation of our own authoritative position.
The same goes to be said about the travel industry. Blogs are substantiation that a company is the best one to trust with your money. They are substantiation that it was the right thing to spend money with a company because they know what they are doing. Blogs are inexpensive ways of promoting a company, of promoting a product or a set of values.
The question then becomes; if so many companies get a ROI from content marketing, then why do so few travel companies do it correctly?
The answer is that I do not know. Whilst conducting the research for this blog I found travel companies talking about football results, reviews for films, chat about plate designs, and even discussing different pizza delivery services. There were even cases of companies using blogs as personal blogs for the individuals at the top of the company. I can guarantee that no-one goes on a travel company website because they value the company's opinion on the cinematic releases of last year. You know who you are.
Travel companies, like any company in any industry, should post about things that are relevant to what they are authorities in. Let's face it, the travel industry is hardly short on potential post topics. Quite literally the whole world is their oyster.
Having a blog is also a fantastic way of optimising for certain things on search engines. A quick search, for instance, of "luxury holidays in Sweden" brought up a few unoptimised pages in the SERP (search engine results page) something which could easily be optimised for in a blog post. From the looks of it, the pages that did come up placed emphasis on meta-data and not much else. This leaves so many ways SEO can be taken to the next level in order to ensure that content is optimised, making the most of a site.
There are two great myths surrounding content. The first is that content marketing is not worth the time or effort put into it. For the answer to that I would urge you to read my other post as linked above. Over 70% of companies are set to increase their content marketing budget in the latter half of 2015. The other myth is that companies have nothing interesting to talk about. Once again, this is simply not true. All companies have something to write about. Travel especially.
Food, events, locations, hotels, vehicles, landscapes, talent, insights, walking, talking, experiences, restaurants, resorts, history - the list goes on and on and on.
Content is not rocket science. It is not a Himitsu-Bako or Yosegi-Zaiku puzzle (a few Japanese travel references for you there), it is simple, but just requires a bit of time and effort. To find out how to improve your social persona please click on the button below.