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Surprise and delight to get more word of mouth publicity

How to surprise and delight for word of mouth pubicity

Ask any tourism business what's their most effective, lowest cost marketing method and they'll almost certainly answer 'word of mouth'. It's easy, it's free - and it 'just happens'. Or does it?

Most businesses just hope for word of mouth publicity and recommendations from satisfied customers. They do a good job, and hope word of mouth referrals will follow. Now we have 'word of mouth on steroids', in the form of social media so it's become even more important to impress.

Surprisingly few peopl…

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Simple web check and update

SImple web check and update

If you only have a few seconds to convince someone to stay on your website and decide to visit you, what do you need to do to get results?

1. Build confidence

Consistency is key. You need your potential customers to trust you. Simple things help.

Keep the same fonts, photo style and colours through-out your website.

Now might be a good time to click through all the pages of your website to check there’s nothing on there that’s out of place? Maybe you had to add some Covid-info in a hurry and…

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Are your potential customers stuck in the 'messy middle' ?

Messy middle

I'm old enough to remember the days when people decided to book a holiday simply based on either a neighbour's recommendation or an ad in the Christmas edition of the Radio Times. Nowadays decision-making is much more complicated. You may not realise it but you're probably losing income and bookings because some of your potential guests and visitors are stuck in the 'messy middle'.

This is the name Google gives to the gap between when someone is first interested in what you offer and their …

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How to use social proof to boost your tourism marketing

social media proof
In an earlier blog I wrote about why you need to build trust. An important part of doing this is to offer ‘social proof’. Social proof is the 'evidence' that people collect from others, which influences their own behaviour. We instinctively notice what others are doing and pick up on some of that activity, believing it might be the 'correct' behaviour, or the 'right' thing to buy. 

A simple example: would you rather buy fish and chips from the shop with or without a queue outside? Rather …

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Why I need to trust you - and how to make it happen

Trust

Can I trust you? How do I know that you're trustworthy?

Does it matter? If you're running a business, yes. It really does: you can't build a business without building trust.

Few of us are ready to pay good money for something that we're not certain of, or don't trust. We may seem to happily hand over our cash for goods and services online. In our sub-conscious we're constantly asking ourselves questions.

Is this really as good as it looks?

Is it worth the money?

Is the company genuine? Is it…

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Are you normal?

Are you normal

I’ve been asked several questions this week, all with a common theme: comparisons.

What’s a normal level of direct bookings for an accommodation provider?

What sort of level of repeat bookings should I aim for? 

What would be a usual bounce rate on Google?

How are bookings looking for everyone else over the next few months?

Are others experiencing a higher than usual level of cancellations?

How good is my social media compared to others?

I’ll answer each of these in a little more detail l…

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Google Adwords to raise the profile of your business

Google Adwords

I very rarely recommend paying for advertising. It's worth getting every other aspect of your marketing right before you start paying for ad space, particularly as it's so hard to judge how effective it is. But sometimes you need results quickly.

Google Adwords is different to traditional advertising. It's a really useful and cost-effective tool, whether you want to raise your profile or attract some last-minute bookings. 

Most advertising costs a lot, and you won't have a clue whether some on…

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Make your website more powerful


Do you know what information you need to include on the home page of your website to get results? 

Most people don't.

We could have a long conversation about search engine optimisation and how using lots of headings and putting the most important information at the top of the page is essential... but there are some other very straight forward things you also need to do. 

Of course every site is different and has varied objectives but it's worth checking that you're doing all these. A lot of…

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Consideration stage of selling

I've had several messages recently from people who say that they've had more visitors to their website but it hasn't necessarily resulted in more bookings.

Why? Is there anything you can do? 

Quick answer: yes!

First of all, it's worth establishing that people aren't just coming to your website for five seconds and then 'bouncing out' because they don't at all like what they see. Google Analytics will help you with this.

Let's assume there's nothing fundamentally wrong with your website, a…

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