Tourism Tim Warren shares website and e-newsletter marketing tips that will help tour businesses achieve more sales
Back in 2004 I received a call from Yanik Silver, who wanted my help to start his dream adventure travel business for millionaire entrepreneurs. We launched Maverick Business Adventures with many of his top Internet marketing buddies as founding members. What I learned from my new millionaire friends has dramatically improved my tourism clients’ online marketing. Let me share with you some of my many Maverick marketing secrets.
You Can’t Improve What You Don’t Measure
One of the most important aspects of your web marketing is knowing how visitors are interacting (or not interacting) with your website. Simply said, you cannot expect to generate leads if the majority of your web visitors leaves quickly.
Google Analytics is a great free website measurement tool you easily can set. The Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to start to track include:
- Monthly Visitors: Are they going up or down?
- Bounce Rate: For many tour companies, the majority of your website visitors leaves in less then 10 seconds. (I’ll show you how to improve this below.)
- Duration: How long the average visitor stays on your site
- Repeat visitor percentage: More is better
- Lead acquisition & sales generation: Is your website doing it’s most important job?
KPI number 5 is important because if you don’t have a proven strategy to capture a web visitor’s email, the reality is few will ever come back to your site. You lose…they lose. Converting website strangers into friends – and those new friends into bookings – takes time to develop. Here’s a proven method to entice strangers to become friends.
Why Email Newsletter Sign-Ups Don’t Work and What Does
99% of web visitors are not motivated to sign up for yet another “newsletter” to clog their overburdened inbox. But what will get web visitors to stick around and give you their email is called a “freemium” or “lead magnet.” This is valuable information that helps potential visitors in their travels that you as a tourism expert in your niche or region can share. This can be a free “PDF Special Report,” ‘Top Tips,” video or audio information and interviews, DVD or mini-course on your area of expertise.
When you provide valuable information to your visitors properly, research shows your email opt-in rates can increase threefold or more. One of the top tools to do this simply and easily, plus track results in real time is a program called Lead Pages.
How to Capture More Leads From Your Website
The lead magnets that generate the highest email opt-ins are very conspicuous in the top half of the home page and are one of the dominant graphics on the page. To increase your results even more, add similar enticing free information on EVERY page as a smaller item, but equally well placed because not all traffic comes into the home page.
Building a Website That Sells
Once you’ve captured a web visitor’s email, send them the “freemium” you promise. Then over time you can start sharing other value tips, tools and specials that friends would share with friends. This can be done automatically using email auto-responders. When your website consistently generates leads and converts friends into customers over time, you will see huge increases in sales, profits and even lower your marketing costs.
How an Alaskan Tour Operator Increased Sales 45% in 18 Months
Doreen and Bob Toller run a small group soft-adventure tour business and B&B. This is a small family tourism business with big competition. Doreen started applying website marketing tips she got from me at a tourism conference. I recently interviewed her and she was really excited. She said sales were up 45% in 18 months, worth an additional $174,000. Doreen admits her website is not super polished, yet generates profitable leads and sales. She reinforces that smart website marketing applied little by little over time, adds up to BIG sales and revenues. She and Bob just bought a forth VIP van and will be vacationing in Hawaii again this winter.
If you monitor your web analytics, capture emails effectively and send valuable information, your leads and sales will increase dramatically in 2015.
By Tourism Tim Warren
Tourism Tim Warren is a speaker, consultant and author of Tourism Marketing Success Online @ runs the blog: TravelBusinessSuccess.com. If you want to get some of Doreen’s top website marketing tips and tools that skyrocketed their Alaska tour business bookings, get her short audio interview and Free PDF special report here.