Are influencers needed for travel company?

By Ryan Guerra

By now the term influencers is etched in our brains. They are the ones taking pictures and making videos for their followers. However, does hosting social media influencers really work and benefit a travel company in the result of new sales? Let’s take a look. 

First, I want to start by saying, I’ve done my fair share of presenting myself as a social media influencer to travel companies as far back as 2008. Yes, I promised the travel companies I would create content based upon my experience and I would share it on my blog. Many agreed and offered us free things and discounts in exchange of more exposure. (Even now, I still have a Youtube channel with 18k subscribers.)

Meanwhile, I also worked as a Marketing Director for one of the largest sightseeing cruise companies in Miami. At this job, we were hit up non-stop by social media influencers with the same offer, free exposure to their large audiences in the hopes of sales. Full-circle moment, I was an influencer offering exposure now I was denying influencers for the same reason. So what changed?

The biggest thing I noticed is the travel company has to have a way to track each content the influencer creates to see if the content increases their sales. If the travel company doesn’t have a tracking system then there  no way to know whether it the influencers succeeded or not. 

This shouldn’t dissuade either the travel company or the influencer rather this scenario is only to track sales. There are many other ways you can track the success of a social media influencers efforts. For example, you can track post likes, increase in followers, visitors to the website and many others. This is all helpful as well to a travel company. 

In fact, my biggest take away from inviting any social media influencer is to take photos of them too. You can hype of their visitation to your travel company and share on social media as well.