COVID Vaccine: Things to Consider

  ● 5 min read
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“It can cost 5x more to attract a new customer than it does to retain an existing one”

If you’re playing the long game until the COVID vaccine is rolled out in early 2021 (which most travel companies are in light of renewed travel restrictions) then focusing on past customers for repeat bookings is shown to bring in a better ROI. 

According to this top tip article, current customers spend 67% more than new customers and they’re more likely to recommend your travel business to others, which is much-needed free marketing for you. 

With this in mind, do you have a customer retention strategy that goes beyond email newsletters and asking customers to follow you on social platforms?

These are still two highly effective routes to your customer, but I thought this article shares some fresh ideas on how you can use content to engage your existing customers and keep coming back to rebook new tours with you.

  • How-To Content – this could include anything from “how to solo travel to [country]” or “how to become a sustainable traveller in 2021”. What would your customer be interested in learning?
  • Celebrate Your Customer Success Stories – include your customers in your content through sharing their photos on your tour or asking them to participate in a testimonial video interview. This will drive loyalty and connection.
  • Create Problem-Solving Content for Your Customers – since they’ve booked with you before, you already know some information about them. Use this to your advantage.
  • Use Your CRM to Create Personalised Content – personalised experiences are expected these days and you can use the data that your sales and marketing have captured to create this.
  • Produce Content that Reinforces Your Shared Values – your values are what probably attracted your customers to you in the first place so it’s advised not to hide them away on your “About Us” page.

News of a COVID vaccine is already causing a surge in travel inquiries. Therefore, would you try any of the above to entice repeat bookings? If your past customers left you a glowing review the first time, who better to turn to for their first post-covid trip than a travel company they already know and trust?

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Here’s last week’s…

Before I get started on our usual roundup of news, I wanted to share with you a company announcement…

Over the past year, we’ve discovered that it’s not just tour operators that are seeking out our support and expertise, but the wider global tourism industry. This includes national and local tourism organisations, as well as travel businesses in domestic, regional and international market sectors.

To recognise this, we’ve unveiled a new name and a new website domain as part of a company-wide rebranding initiative. Moving forward, we are 10x Tourism. For more information behind the rebrand, click here.

Now, let’s get started.

Here's this week's roundup:

Pfizer Vaccine Trial Success Signals Breakthrough in Pandemic Battle

Source: Reuters

This is obviously the second piece for very exciting news! I’m sure news of a vaccine brings a sigh of relief for everyone in the travel industry and if you’re playing the long game until the COVID vaccine is rolled out, then you’ll be glad to know the following distribution agreements: the EU is to sign a contract for up to 300 million doses of the vaccine. There’s a supply agreement with the US to deliver 100 million vaccine doses beginning this year, as well as agreements with the UK, Canada and Japan.

Image Courtesy of REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

New Research Reveals Americans Intentions for Holiday Travel

Source: Travel Pulse

Many travel companies rely largely on the US market so if that’s you, then you’ll find this research survey useful. 

It’s encouraging to hear that 20% said they plan to take an international trip. However, this could increase substantially now that a vaccine is likely to be rolled out by Q1 2021. 

Are you seeing any uptake in inquiries recently from US travellers?

The Hard-Hit Tour Companies Pushing Forward on a Careful Path to Recovery

Source: Skift

Learn from the success of others in this article. For example, promote the tour destinations where quarantine isn’t necessary and locate the travellers who live in close proximity to the bigger airports that are producing one-hour COVID testing for passengers coming into your tour destination. 

Other tips include giving customers the flexibility to cancel and being upfront about public health measures happening on the ground (even better – showcase what you’re doing through pictures and videos). 

The most frequently asked question appears to be about how social distancing will be maintained on tours. Do you clearly answer this on your website?

Image Courtesy of skift.com

Pssst...Would you like to be part of a community of like-minded tour operators?

Here are my top-tip articles:

How to Write Killer Email Subject Lines for Sales

Source: Copyblogger

One suggestion for travel companies that have more than one target audience is to segment your email list based on age demographic. Evidence suggests that readiness to travel is fragmented in this way with older generations making travel decisions with caution. You may see better engagement if email subject lines and messaging was personalised to suit each audience. 

How enticing are your email subject lines? You’ll find the answer is in your open rates.

Image Courtesy of Copyblogger

13 Simple (But Critical) Tips for Creating Better Landing Pages

Source: Hubspot

Are you creating landing pages for new 2021 tour offers? You may already be aware of many of the tips in this Hubspot article, but it’s worth using it as a checklist to ensure you have the key elements before hitting publish. 

A couple of good tips that stood out to me that we’ve seen work at 10x Tourism is removing the main navigation bar and including proof elements, such as customer testimonials to reduce anxiety.

Image Courtesy of Hubspot.com

How to Plan Your Blog Content Calendar for the Entire Year

This sounds like a big task but this article breaks it down for you and provides tools you can use to generate content ideas. 

The important thing to remember is to write content that targets all phases of a buyer’s journey: Awareness, Consideration, Decision, and Retention Marketing.


A statistic I found interesting:

Skyscanner reported an “immediate spike” in online traffic, with searches for holidays next spring and summer up 48% on the previous week since the announcement of the COVID vaccine (The Guardian)


A question for you:

What’s the earliest you’re seeing inquiries for? Is there a correlation to the age demographic making the inquiries?

Share your thoughts and comments on our Facebook and Linkedin page or drop me an email at [email protected] – I’d love to hear from you.

Did you enjoy reading the above?

The 10xpress is a monthly series curated exclusively for travel companies like you

Every month, I provide you with:

  • Reports, opinion, case studies and key findings that directly impact the tours and activities sector.
  • Educational articles to guide you through the changing world of online sales and marketing from industry leaders.
  • Tips and tools on how to improve your tour operator business, generate more sales and make your life easier.
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