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Visually Sell a Destination: Photos in Your Travel Marketing Campaign

Visually Sell a Destination: Photos in Your Travel Marketing Campaign Anna Johansson
When marketing a destination, the place is the product – and people want to see what they’re getting. For most people, traveling isn’t cheap, which is why providing enticing photos and other visual content is so important. People need to see to believe, and your ability to satisfy this demand will prove lucrative down the line.

The Power of Visual Content

If you aren’t using visuals like images, videos, and infographics, you’re missing out. Research suggests that visual content is exponentially more powerful than textual alternatives and brings much higher returns when used as part of an overall marketing campaign.

According to data, 40 percent of people respond better to visuals, 50 percent of the brain is active in visual processing, 70 percent of sensory receptors are found in the eyes, and 90 percent of information transmitted to the brain is visual in nature. Furthermore, a whopping 95 percent of businesses claim visual content is valuable for digital marketing, and 89 percent plan on using it as part of their social media campaign.

Tips for Using Images as a Part of Your Marketing Campaign

How will you use images as a part of your travel marketing campaign this year? Here’s a look at various tips and tricks from industry leaders:

  • Website headers. The current trend is to use large header background images on your website’s home page. They’re simple, visually appealing, and highly engaging. Layouts used by websites like VaycayHero and Orchard Keepers are engaging, but not distracting. They tell you exactly what the website is about and don’t take away from the actual features.

  • Invest in Instagram. Out of all the social networking platforms available to you, Instagram is the most valuable for companies within the tourism industry. It allows you to showcase the best parts about a particular destination and gives you control over how the user sees it. For best results, you can use Instagram to hold contests and even ask other users to post their favorite snapshots from their trips.

  • Build Pinterest boards. Coming in a close second behind Instagram is Pinterest. You should try building various boards related to your destinations. On these you can include places to visit, travel tips, top restaurants, and other interesting information. The beauty of these boards is that you’ll pick up followers and they’ll continually be inundated with visual reasons why the destination is so great.

  • Email images. If you’re going to run an email marketing campaign, it’s better have images. Never send an email without at least one or two pictures. If your emails are simply text, recipients are likely clicking delete in a matter of seconds.

  • Rental listings. Are you responsible for vacation rental listings? This simple experiment shows how important professional images are, when compared to amateur photos. In this particular example, a simple investment in quality images brought a revenue increase of more than 500 percent over a single week.

  • Launch a photo blog. In the travel industry, photo blogs are very popular and powerful. They allow you to consistently publish images and build a reputation as the premier provider of travel information in your niche.  When starting a photo blog, take time to develop a very detailed strategy. You should have a purpose behind the blog posts you create and don’t want to haphazardly use any images you run across. There needs to be a specific purpose and desired outcome.

Make Visual Content a Priority This Year

Where is visual content on your list of marketing priorities? It needs to be near the top in 2015 and beyond. By investing in visual content like high quality images, engaging videos, and compelling infographics, you’re showing travelers that you’re committed to quality and transparency. What type of visual content will you produce this year?

Anna is a freelance writer and researcher from the Olympia, WA area who loves to obsess about weird topics and then write about them. When she isn't writing, she is outside on her bike and contemplating her eventual trip to graduate school.

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