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The Future of Travel Marketing

Is TikTok the Next Big Thing?

By Angela SchnaubeltPublished 5 months ago 3 min read
The Future of Travel Marketing
Photo by Lux Charters on Unsplash

You may have heard the terms "Revenge Travel," or "Boomerang Travel." The travel industry is rebounding in 2023 and 2024, and especially some cruises are sold out for the next three years.

Opportunity abounds! Travel plans are afoot, and you, dear travel agent, are reaping the rewards. But where to market yourself aside from traditional word of mouth marketing?

TikTok is wildly popular, and is quickly becoming more effective in niche marketing than even Facebook or Instagram. This social media app has taken the world by storm, with over 1.7 billion active users worldwide. It's become a go-to platform for many people to discover new content and trends, including travel inspiration.

So, is TikTok the next big thing in travel marketing? Let's take a closer look at how the app works and its potential for the travel industry.

Firstly, TikTok is a video-sharing app that allows users to create short-form videos up to 3 minutes long. The app's algorithm suggests content based on users' interests and viewing habits, making it a powerful tool for discovering new travel destinations and experiences.

One of the most significant advantages of TikTok is its highly engaging format. The short-form videos on TikTok are often highly entertaining, which makes them ideal for capturing the attention of viewers. Travel brands can use this format to showcase their destinations, hotels, and experiences in a way that's highly engaging and shareable.

For example, a hotel could create a short video tour of their property, highlighting the amenities and features that make it unique. Or, interview employees, or create skits of guest experiences. Find out more about subcultures on Travel TikTok as well as influencers in this article all about TravelTok.

Examples of How the Travel Industry is Already Using TikTok for Marketing

The platform has already seen success in the travel industry. Many hotels, airlines, and tourism boards have joined TikTok to promote their brand and engage with a younger audience.

While not yet a huge channel at about 300k followers, Marriott Bonvoy is getting some traction with its hotel chain on TikTok. A little known fact from a video that did not go viral: Marriott Bonvoy is a "Touring Sponsor" of Taylor Swift for her Eras Tour.

Disney has over 14 million followers which is superstar status. Their channel is organized into tabs at the top with categories such as "Disney Stars," "Throwbacks," "Disney Eats," "Disney Magic," etc. Of course, the user-generated content for this example is insane! As of December 2023, there are over 270 BILLION views for the hashtag Disney. #Disney.

Travel Agents as Influencers on TikTok

However, TikTok's success in travel marketing is not limited to just big brands. Small businesses and travel influencers have also seen success on the platform. Many travel influencers have amassed large followings on TikTok, showcasing their travels and inspiring others to explore the world. These influencers have the power to influence their followers' travel decisions, making them valuable partners for travel companies looking to reach a younger audience.

So, what are the advantages of using TikTok for travel marketing? Firstly, TikTok's algorithm ensures that content is tailored to users' interests, making it easier for travel companies to reach a relevant audience. Secondly, the platform's short-form video format is perfect for showcasing travel experiences quickly and effectively. Finally, TikTok's younger demographic makes it an ideal platform for travel companies looking to attract a new generation of travelers.

Challenges to Using TikTok for Travel Marketing

Of course, there are challenges to using TikTok for travel marketing. Firstly, the app's content is user-generated, which means that travel companies have less control over the messaging and branding. This can be risky for companies that want to maintain a consistent brand image. Secondly, the platform's algorithm can be unpredictable, which means that even the most well-planned campaigns may not go viral. Finally, TikTok is still a relatively new platform, and it may take some time for travel companies to learn how to effectively use it for marketing purposes.

In conclusion, TikTok has the potential to be the next big thing in travel marketing. The platform's algorithm, short-form video format, and younger demographic make it an ideal platform for travel companies looking to reach a new generation of travelers. However, like any marketing strategy, it comes with its own set of challenges. Companies will need to learn how to navigate the platform's user-generated content and unpredictable algorithm to make the most of its potential.

As the world starts to open up, travel companies need to be creative and innovative in their marketing strategies to attract customers back. TikTok could be the key to reaching the younger generations of travelers and inspiring them to explore the world.

A portion of this article was written by chatGPT.

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About the Creator

Angela Schnaubelt

Stage 4 cancer survivor and thriver. Marketing strategist and business development coach for alternative health practitioners. World traveled, intelligent and ambitious yet heart centered. Lover of nature, animals, and life!!

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