Corporate blogging for tourism organisationsITB eTravel World 2011, 10.03.2011Click to edit Master Media Specialist, STA TravelKaren Liller, Social subtitle style
Agenda1. Social Media at STA Travel2. Why should more tourism organisations blog?3. Are you ready for take off? • First strategic steps • First technical steps • Bringing a corporate blog to life • Multimedia4. A long journey: blog marketing
1. Social Media at STA TravelSocial Media –why are we doing this?
1. Social Media at STA Travel Research conducted by Hubspot (2010)
2. Why should more tourism businesses blog? Great tool for internal Great tool for internal A blog helps you A blog helps you communication communication building a building a Readers get more Readers get more relationship with relationship with involved – involved – your customers your customers feedback, feedback, Your colleagues Blogging Blogging Your colleagues -> loyalty -> loyalty comments, comments, can share their is fun! is fun! can share their suggestions! suggestions!travel experiencestravel experiences A blog A blog Blogging is Blogging is provides your provides your networking networking company with company with a human face a human face A blog is a great A blog is a great A blog adds A blog adds publishing platform publishing platform valuable and valuable and for small corporate Blogging is for small corporate emotional content emotional content Blogging is stories – no stories – no to your website to your website storytelling storytelling gatekeepers gatekeepers A blog demonstrates A blog demonstrates Google likes Google likes Exposure as Exposure as corporate openness corporate openness blogs blogs thought leaders thought leaders in the travel in the travel industry industry
3. Are you ready for take off?Please don‘t make any rash decisions!
3. Are you ready for take off?Before you start setting up a corporate blog foryour tourism business ask yourself:• Why would our company like to blog?• Is blogging the right thing for our company?• Are we ready to start the public dialogue?• Do we have topics to write about?• Do we have someone who could manage the blog?• Are there people interested in our products & stories?
3. Are you ready for take off?Welcome to the corporate blogging community! cc alborzshawn
3. Are you ready for take off?In case you are new to blogging…• Start reading blogs• Start commenting on blogs• Start blogging yourself• Don’t accept blog advice from people that are not bloggers• Do accept advice from social media agencies or smart books
3. Are you ready for take off?First strategic steps:1. Set clear but flexible business objectives you want to achieve with your blog2. You’ll need well defined metrics for tracking process3. Define your audience4. What kind of relationship do you want to build with your audience?5. What kind of blog you want to have? (e.g. CEO blog, internal vs. external blog)6. Develop a content strategy – niche topics might work for you?7. Take a look at your staff: Who will write the content? Who will manage the comments, who will approve the blog posts? Who can coach the employees? Do you need to increase resources?8. Which language will you write in?
3. Are you ready for take off?First technical steps:• don‘t use free blog systems (e.g. tumblr, blogger.com)• discuss with your seo specialist: domain, subdomain or directory?• we decided to reside our blog under http://blog.statravel.de (technicalreasons) - cross-linking between the blog and the main site is important• think about a name for your blog (optional)Example for a corporate blog set up on a free blog publishing tool:Example No. 1: Tripadvisor Blog• http://tripadvisorblog.wordpress.com/• won’t be helpful improving search enginge ranking for tripadvisor.de• not flexible enough, no rss feed, no author profiles etc.
3. Are you ready to take off Screenshot: 27.2.2011
3. Are you ready for take off?First technical steps:• Your corporate blog shout reflect your CI – don’t invent a new one forthe blog• ask an agency to design a custom made template• or purchase a wordpress theme / adapt the design yourselfExample No. 2: Holidaycheck Blog• http://blog.holidaycheck.de• nicely adapted to website design• cross-linking between blog and website
3. Are you ready for take off? First technical steps:• share and comment functionalities• RSS feed• author profiles• categories and tags• legal notices• social media guidelines and blogging guidelines for your employees• commenting guidelines• you’ll find plenty of resources online - ask your lawyer for advice
3. Are you ready for take off?But this is just the groundwork…• …you need to bring your blog to life!• Your corporate blog should reflect your brand character• Try colloquial, descriptive, emotional and experiential text – no marketing or sales talkTwo corporate blogs that are technically fine, but something is missing…Example No. 3: Delta Blog• http://blog.delta.com/Example No. 4: TUI Austria Blog• http://blog.tui.at/
3. Are you ready for take off?Get personal!• Show your readers the people behind the blog• In our case: the more the merrier! More STA Travel bloggers bring a nice variety to our blog. Plus: more bloggers spread out the work load• Each colleague has his or her own travel expertise, different views on things which is interesting for the readersExample No. 5: STA Travel Blog• http://blog.statravel.deExample No. 6: Nuts about Southwest• http://www.blogsouthwest.com
3. Are you ready for take off?Bring multimedia to your blog!• The use of photos and videos is essential in the tourism industry,experience is everything• feed the senses of your customers• prefer self-made pictures over stock photos!• add audio to your blog – maybe podcasts?• video is perfect for telling a story, generate emotions• relax: videos and pictures on your corporate blog don’t have to looktoo professionalExample No. 6: Florida Bloghttp://www.visitfloridablog.org/
4. A long journey: blog marketingHow to be successful in Blog Marketing• be patient• be interesting• be unique• have fun, show passion• put your blog everywhere you can: on your website, in your e-mailfooter, on business cards, on flyers, brochures etc.• cross-marketing (e.g. blog and newsletter)• network with other bloggers (on- and offline)• use Twitter and Facebook to share your blog content• demonstrate the success (internally and externally)