Marketing travel and camping websites used to be the work of expert marketers and travel agencies, but now more than ever, this task is transforming.

And social media certainly takes the credit.

In a world of real-time sharing, geo tagging, and increased connection with consumers, social media offers unique opportunities to spread the word about your travel business. In 2014, companies spent 25% of their marketing budgets on digital marketing, and this is expected to spike to 75% by 2019. Businesses are certainly on their way there due to the influence of social networking.

Social sharing is replacing travel agencies. While travelers used to seek expert resources on where to take their next trip, now they take to travel blogs, Instagram, and friend’s Facebook albums to make their ideal destination list. Some of this happens organically, but much of this marketing happens through social influencers. Many travel businesses pay these bloggers and other content creators to visit and promote their campground, bed and breakfast, or other location to post photos and review it.

With this word-of-mouth marketing remaining effective, customer reviews have grown in importance. As consumers have access to endless photos and hashtags showing off their favorite travel spots, they also have access to customer reviews. Yelp, Facebook, Lonely Planet, Trip Advisor, and Google are all hubs for these types of reviews, and many online users truly take them into consideration. When businesses take measures to generate these reviews, potential clients can see that you have built a positive reputation with former clients.

Businesses also have more customer service opportunities. Since their customers are interacting with you on social media, you can also use to address customer service issue. Whenever you get a negative comment, Tweet, or customer review, it’s an opportunity to address it and bring the concern offline. Other users will also see this and note that you have strong customer service.

By latching on to these social media marketing trends, you can take your digital marketing to the next level. This goes beyond strong tourism and camping websites. By interacting with customers online, you can build brand loyalty and foster a true community around your business. And if done well, this can lead to more bookings.

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