Social media – it’s a tricky area that agents, their managers and social media experts are still trying to wrap their heads arounds.
What works? What doesn’t? It’s all a game of trial and error to ensure you’re delivering the right and effective information to clients that could potentially translate into bookings.
While agents in publicly owned retail stores may be limited in what they can do online, it’s increasingly becoming particularly for mobile consultants to utilise the online world as a marketing tool to push their brand.
At this year’s TravelManagers Conference in Adelaide a panel of five travel agents who are on the way to becoming social media gurus took to the stage to offer tips and tricks that could help their peers in the social media world.
This is what Amy Ferguson, Vanessa Lambert, Pamela Bass, Matt Halloran and Cassandra Zayonce had to say:
1. Schedule your posts
All five panelists, especially Bass, agreed that Facebook doesn’t need to consume too much of your time if you plan ahead. The site lets users schedule their posts one week, a year or even two years in advance. This will ensure your page is being regularly updated and it’s working for you even when you’re not thinking about it.
2. Theme your posts
Lambert said make your Facebook posts exciting by using daily themes. As pictured above, she uses Tuesday as ‘Travel Tip Tuesday’ and sometimes Friday is ‘Where in the world am I?’. She explained that by adding themes it makes it easier for her to come up with content when she’s planning out the week.
3. Try everything at least once
As mentioned above, Facebook is really a game of trial and error and these TravelManagers completely back that statement. Ferguson said she highly recommends trying everything at least once and seeing what works with your clients. She explained that everyone’s audience would be different and what gets her ‘likes’ may not necessarily work for others. So test out your followers, read the ‘insights’ and post what works for your.
4. Boost your posts
Investing a little money on Facebook will not only expand your reach but translate into new ‘liked’ and new clients. Lambert says currently she will boost posts for around $9, which sends her message out to around 1,500-3,400 people. Ferguson suggests spending around $20-$30 for a shorter time frame of around two to three days.
5. Don’t just use a page, join groups too
Halloran sees pages as having a one-way conversation with your clients. You share the information and they can respond if they want to or ignore it. But groups are more of a community of people that share a common interest. As a cruise specialist, Halloran says he is signed up to three cruise community pages – each has thousands of followers. In these groups he shares his expertise as a fellow cruiser. While he doesn’t push sales on fellow members, they are aware of his status as a travel agent and know they can book through him anytime. And it’s working for him.
6. Try it, it’s free
Zeyonce, who focused more on time-saving social media tools such as Gmail, said agents shouldn’t be afraid to play with various outlets and see how they work. She says by self-exploring agents can pick up new ways to do business and build business.
What are your tips for building business on social media?
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