Travel Public Relations

Travel PR Firms are using new tools to offer tourists “do it now” mobile offers and deals to boost sales. For mid-tier and secondary  tourist businesses the pot  of gold at the end of the rainbow has always been capturing tourists focused on major destinations. It could be a smaller attraction trying to help a family fill up its off day during a week at Disney. Maybe a local curiosity shop peeling a few extra dollars from each visitor to a destination city.

Whatever the brand or attraction, smart travel marketing includes these offers because it helps to complete the picture of the perfect vacation. There was a time when PR agencies specialized in filling endless rows of brochure racks with cards, flyers, brochures and coupons for attractions. While those still exist, PR Firms are now adapting to the new rules of mobile marketing to connect with consumers.

For example, a family on a vacation may receive:

  • A “reserve now” offer for a day trip or excursion
  • BOGO museum tickets on a rainy day
  • Coupons for a family dinner at a local seafood restaurant
  • A discount on a visit to a sister attraction

Side trips. Rainy day entertainment. Coupons and limited time deals are all becoming available via push notifications and QR codes. These “impulse” travel ideas work on a principle similar to Groupon. A vacationer may have had no intention of getting a two-for-one ticket to a waterpark or a half-off coupon at the ice cream shop. But there it is, right on their phone. All they have to do is click and go.

This strategy works even when the end user had no plans to travel. Like interactive direct mail, mobile notifications allow users to immediately explore their options. Suddenly, “what are we going to do today?” becomes “hey, this looks fun!” Have you ever been on vacation and seen one of those prop planes fly by towing a banner promoting a local business? Imagine if everyone standing there staring up at that banner had already received a text or push notification on their phone. All they would have to do is present the message and save.

Not only is the latter method more compelling, it offers a better way for marketers and businesses to track successful campaigns and manage analytics. We are just beginning to see how this sort of interactive offer will drive consumer behavior. It will be very interesting to watch how this new method of travel and Public Relations develops.