Twitter has been an integral marketing tool for several years and with more and more users joining the platform every day, it’s easy to get lost amongst all of the content being pushed through. However, this mess can easily be cleaned up by using a native feature. Read on to learn more about why you should start using Twitter lists.
What is a Twitter List?
A Twitter list is a curated group of Twitter accounts that allows you to see a timeline of Tweets from only those accounts. Using them, you can effortlessly sort through the clutter, monitor important conversations, and stay up-to-date on your partners. The recent updates to the mobile version of Twitter mean you can simply swipe between lists on your feed!
1. Clean Up the Clutter
Rather than trying to monitor all of the accounts you follow at once, Lists allow you group specific users. The best part? Tweets appear chronologically so you don’t miss a thing! With so many Tweets going out every second of every day, it’s easy to get lost amongst the mess. Start cleaning up the clutter by making a list so you can see what you want to see – when you want to see it.
2. Monitor Destination Business Partners
Because it’s easy to get lost in the crowd on Twitter, that means it’s also easy to lose track of what your partners are up to on the platform. By creating a list specifically for types of destination partners, you are able to more easily track what they are saying on Twitter. For instance, you could group major attractions, marketing organizations, and winter experiences Twitter accounts each into their own List. Plus, it allows you to more easily interact with them!
3. Engage with Influential People and Accounts
Any time you add someone to a public list, they will get a notification that you’ve done so, which will automatically grab their attention. By creating a list with local influencers, your own office staff or even local government employees, you’re better able to monitor the current conversations. When you have time, you can take time to thoughtfully look through this list and engage with what they’re saying.
Twitter lists are a small but effective way to easily interact with your destination partners and influencers, as well as a great way to stay more organized on the platform. To get started creating your first Twitter list, click here for an easy step-by-step guide! For more ways to stay up-to-date on the latest digital marketing trends, be sure to subscribe to our e-newsletter and follow us on social media at the links below!
Nowadays, the impact of Google on the tourism industry is constantly growing. Travelers are increasingly referring to Google Maps to figure out what’s around them – using it as a major influencer to make their travel decisions. This is exactly why it is important to make sure that your business is both listed on Google Maps and has a Google knowledge panel by being a verified Business on Google. Not only will being listed help people find you easier, but it will also increase your SEO by making sure your business shows up in search results! Check out our easy ,step-by-step guide on how to claim your business on Google.
1. Make a Google My Business Account
The first step in appearing on Google Maps is to sign up for a Google My Business account. To create profile, you simply go to Google My Business and click “Manage Now.” Then, you add your business name in the search box.
If the business is not claimed yet, you will click the “Manage Now” button to continue to set up your account
If the business IS claimed, you will receive a notice saying that it has already been claimed, and you will need to request access to gain access to the Business account.
2. Verify your Business
Next, choose a verification method in order to verify your business. This can be done with phone, email or even by mail. Official verification can take a few days, but you can continue to update business settings while you wait.
3. Enter Necessary Business Information
Once you go through the process of requesting verification, you will be brought to the Google My Business dashboard, where you will add all of the necessary information in order for a visitor to find you on Google. To edit business information, navigate to the “Info” button in the left-hand menu.
Important things to include:
- Business Hours
- Images of your business
- Business description
- Your website
4. What’s Next with Google My Business?
Now that you’re on the map (quite literally…) what’s next? First, check out the previews of what you look like on Google Maps and in search results to make sure you didn’t miss anything.
Once you’ve finished putting the final touches on your listing, you can start to use Google Posts to ensure your latest blog posts show up in search results. Plus, keep track of your Google Reviews, search activity and latest insights on Google searches related to your industry.
Finally, make sure you are consistently checking in on your Google listing and updating your post feed so users can see the newest results when they find you in their search results!
For more ways to stay up to date on the latest trends in travel, tourism, and digital marketing, be sure to follow us across social media at the links below or subscribe to our e-newsletter!
If you are looking for a simple solution to making sure that your destination partners are staying updated on all of your destination happenings, we have the answer for you! Create a newsletter and consistent distribution schedule to effectively communicate with your partners regularly. Read on for a few key elements to your partner newsletter:
Before we get started, remember: this doesn’t have to be on the same distribution as your monthly leisure newsletter. It can be less or more frequent, depending on the peak season for your destination.
Before you do anything else, determine a regular distribution schedule for your partner newsletter that you can and will stick to! Think about events in your area that might be necessary to address or just how often you would like to be communicating with your partners.
Next, make sure that you have all of the emails of your area partners before getting started! Your updates won’t be much use unless they’re reaching the right people. If you don’t have these, try collecting them at your next partner event.
3. The Template
Once you’ve set your schedule and establish your partner email database, it’s time to build out your partner newsletter template. The template should be simple and easy-to-use since you will be using it on a fairly consistent basis. The template should consist of these main content elements:
- An event run down for the coming month/week
- An educational or news article about travel or destination marketing best practices
- Optional: Include one of your recent blogs if it is relevant to your partners
- Include any possible ways that your partners can connect with community: do you have events coming up that they could sponsor or host? This is a great way to communicate those ideas
Check out this great partner newsletter example from Pure Ludington:
4. Keep Up the Good Work
Along with these major content elements, it’s important to practice good email marketing habits like:
- Use intriguing, relevant, and different subject line and preview text in each email (with emojis!)
- Change your header image periodically (seasonal works well)
- Include social media links at the top and bottom of your messages
- Keep things clean and concise for your readers
When you are crafting your partner email, it is important to keep in mind that you are their main source for destination information. Being accessible and communicating the key events will allow your partners to be involved and will likely foster a positive relationship with them moving forward! For more tips and tricks on how to develop your digital marketing strategy for your destination, follow us across social media at the links below and subscribe to our e-newsletter.
Looking to learn more about email marketing strategy for your destination? Contact us for more information about working with us!
The second of our quarterly state tourism website traffic analysis for the 50 official state tourism offices was published today. The analysis was conducted by the TwoSix Digital team to benchmark and rank traffic to each tourism organization’s website. The analysis graded each state by total traffic, average monthly visits, share of mobile vs. desktop and engagement factors like pages per visit, average visit duration and bounce rate. This month we also tracked inbound and outbound links, which gives us some perspective where the visitors are coming from and where they are going after interacting with state tourism websites.
The indicator that the tourism promotion season is in high gear was very clear with 72% of the states increasing their overall traffic in Q2 over Q1. Oklahoma took over the number spot with 2.8 million total website visits. The top five stayed consistent, with one change – Oklahoma replaced Hawaii among the leaders. Florida held the second spot for the second consecutive quarter, followed by California, Michigan and Colorado.
The average number of visits to all state tourism website was 834,906 in the Q2, a 7% increase over Q1. Mobile traffic stayed consistent at 75%, just two percentage points down from 77% in Q1. The state of Alaska moved up to the number one spot in website engagement, from number three in Q1. They also lead all fifty state tourism offices in pages per visit at 3.17 and time on-site with a duration of 2:49.
The other states in the top five of overall website engagement were Delaware at number two, followed by Vermont, West Virginia and Connecticut rounded out the fifth spot. This ranking was calculated by using a weighted scale based on the number of page visits, time on site and bounce rate. We then calculated the overall engagement rate on a scale from 1-10 and ranked the states from 1 to 50.
One addition to the Q2 rankings includes the top incoming and outgoing websites, which gives us some perspective on the overall traveler’s content interests and website usage. The top incoming site was Google. Of the 50 states, 74% of them had incoming traffic from Google. It also looks like many state tourism offices are conducting connected TV promotions, as Hulu was second in referral traffic – sending 22% of the total inbound traffic to state tourism sites. TripAdvisor rounded out the top three with an 8% share of incoming clicks.
The top outgoing sites were much more balanced with Facebook leading the downstream traffic at 32% followed by the National Park Service at 30%. Google also acquired 26% of the outgoing traffic – which tells us more than a quarter of the visitors to state tourism websites did not find what they were looking for or needed more specific information following their initial query. TripAdvisor closed out the top four with an 8% share of outgoing traffic.
One very interesting note, Alaska was the only state with all of their top 10 outgoing traffic links reaching local tour groups and tourism industry partner websites. A great achievement for the marketers of the 49thstate!
All of the data was gathered via SimilarWeb, a third-party traffic and website analysis application. SimilarWeb’s innovative marketing intelligence allows users to gain insight into any website’s statistics through a global panel of consumers that work across a range of devices and websites.
We would like to emphasize that we do realize these numbers will not be “apples to apples” in terms of overall website visits recorded through Google Analytics or other tracking software installed on an individual website. But, by collectively recording the aggregate data for all 50 states from an identical source utilizing the same methodologies, we will be able to draw a very accurate analysis of the traffic positioning.
If you constantly find your self wondering how to use Google Analytics (CA), you are not alone. Although Google Analytics has been around for several years now, there are still many marketers that feel overwhelmed even just opening the platform. It is a key tool in learning more about your website and audience and how you can ultimately reach your marketing goals.
In this blog we are going to go over the 5 basic measurements that will give you key insights to the overall effectiveness of your website.
To get started, go to www.google.com/analytics/ and sign in. Once you sign in, click the “audience” drop down menu on the far left and then click “overview.”
WHAT: “Total number of Sessions within the date range. A session is the period time a user is actively engaged with your website, app, etc. All usage data (Screen Views, Events, Ecommerce, etc.) is associated with a session.”
HOW: Audience > Overview
WHY: The number of website visitors is a great indicator to the effectiveness of a CVB. It’s important to not only know how many people visit your website, but to also compare it year-over-year.
WHAT: “Pageviews is the total number of pages viewed. Repeated views of a single page are counted.”
HOW: Audience > Overview
WHY: This number provides a grand total of the number of pages that were viewed on your website within a certain time frame. This can be a much more impressive number to share, and can highlight an effective website for inspiration.
WHAT: How long people spend on your website.
HOW: Audience > Overview
WHY: The longer people stay on your site, the more likely they are to convert. If you are seeing session durations under 90 seconds, it’s time to make your site more engaging.
WHAT: The average number of pages people visit on your website.
HOW: Audience > Overview
WHY: This metric helps determine if your website inspires people to click around, or leave from the homepage. We like to see websites with 3+ pages per session.
WHAT: Percentage of people who “bounce out” of your website.
HOW: Audience > Overview
WHY: High bounce rates can indicate a couple things:
1) Your content does not match the promise of what they hoped to find.
2) Your page took too long to load.
3) The content was unappealing (bad imagery, useless information, too much information, etc.)
4) The content was so useful that people did not linger on the page because they found what they needed. Keep these things in mind when evaluating a page with high bounce rates!
Note: Average session duration, pages per session and bounce rate: These metrics are also tracked for individual pages on your website. The majority of this data can be found on the left side bar under Behavior > Site Content.
Now that you’ve learned these basics of Google Analytics, continue your learning at the links below:
For more hot tips on digital marketing and tourism, be sure to subscribe to our e-newsletter and follow us across social media at the links below!
(And what to do when you find it!)
User-Generated Content (UGC) is a huge part of tourism marketing. People are constantly posting images during their travels, which provides great opportunities for DMOs to repost this content on their own channels to promote and inspire tourism. In this blog, you’ll learn the best ways to find great UGC on Instagram and what to do when you find it.
Some users make it super simple by tagging you in their photos, so the first place to start is looking at the images you’re tagged in! Navigate to the “tagged photos” portion in your Instagram profile to see what you’ve been tagged in. A best practice is to check-in on this a few times a week (at least) to make sure that you’re not missing out on any impressive content.
Check Your Hashtag For User-Generated Content
Did you know that you can search your hashtag on Instagram to see all of the posts that have used it? You can do this by either navigating to the search bar and typing it in or by clicking your hashtag that’s in your bio. This will take you to a screen displaying both popular and recent posts using your hashtag!
Using a location tag is a method for users to post about the places they visit during their trip and a great way to know for certain that an image was taken at a specific destination. To find a specific location tag, simply navigate to the search bar and start typing in the location. You should see the location pop up in the search results. If you see a location tagged that you want to look at in your feed, you can also click on the tag above the image and it will navigate you to a page displaying both popular and recent posts at that location. Remember, don’t just check city tags, but also local attractions, restaurants, and more!
What to Do When You Find User-Generated Content
Now that you’ve found the perfect image for your feed, it’s time to save the user-generated content to your collection and get approval from the user to actually use the photo in your feed. Follow these steps to make sure that you’re asking for permission in the right way:
- Save the image to your collection so you can easily refer back to it when necessary. See below how to add it to your collection:
2. Like the Image!
3. Comment on the image using verbiage something like this:
“Great photo! With your permission, we’d love to use this in our blog. Let us know if you have any concerns.”
4. Once you receive a response, you can reply and thank them for giving you permission!
Posting the User-Generated Content with Credit
Finally, make sure that when you post the image on your own social feeds, you tag the user in the image, or give them photo credit in the comments. If you’re putting it in your blog, be sure to give them image credit. If you are embedding the photo directly to your website, it’ll automatically give credit where credit is due.
Following this quick approach is an integral step in giving your brand a voice. You also show your visitors appreciation for posting their images of your location. Integrating user-generated content in your blogs and social media feeds will allow future visitors to see others experiencing your destination and can inspire them to do so as well. For more new and exciting ways to use digital marketing to enhance your destination marketing organization, be sure to subscribe to our e-newsletter and follow us across social media at the links below.
This year, the U.S. Travel Association will celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week May 5 through May 11. The week is an annual tradition set to celebrate not only the U.S. travel community but also to unite the different values that travel holds for the economy, businesses and personal well-being.
Read more by checking out our Spark page below!