Life is slowly starting to return to a new normal since city after city has begun to reopen from the COVID-19 Pandemic. With summer at our doorstep and many of us restless at home, scheduling a summer vacation is something many will consider. How will the travel industry reignite itself after taking such a hit?
The first thing theme parks and resorts have been doing to reopen is inviting back VIP members or annual ticket holders for soft openings. This helps these businesses test their newly implemented COVID-19 procedures and gives guests a preview of what they can expect going forward. Airlines and hotels have lowered their prices for travelers due to the lack of business for the past few months and to attract new customers. But where do influencers fit in all of this?
The life of an influencer is just that, they influence. According to a study reported by mediakix, 82% of consumers are highly likely to follow the recommendation of an influencer over traditional methods. Instagram has become the new travel guide and influencers have the ultimate say and influence on where consumers visit and stay. To regain business, hospitality companies should consider hiring travel bloggers, lifestyle influencers, and even foodies in order to help restart and regain the business they’ve lost during this pandemic. If travelers see their favorite influencers traveling again, they’ll be more inclined to do so.
They could also benefit from seeing how the influencer safely travels. Influencers can instruct and help answer questions for weary travelers. For example, if you aren’t quite sure about airline regulations or are concerned about social distancing in hotel lobbies, content creators make their income off of posting videos and life stories of where they are and what it looks like. An airline or hotel could prompt free travel or pay in exchange for a real, honest, and accurate live feed of just how their business is operating in the new normal from an influencer.
Influencers also create unique and marketable content for businesses that may not have the funds to pull out a full-on content shoot and marketing campaign like they’re used to doing. Finding that perfect Instagram shot is no easy task, and influencers are professionals at getting that flawless, wish you were here shot. Considering this can be done at a low budget with an iPhone and editing apps, it’s an ideal option for these companies in this economic climate.
While COVID-19 is impacting nearly every industry financially, the travel industry has taken a beating. Since resorts and theme parks aim to reopen and begin modified operations by summer’s end, they would benefit from working with influencers to help encourage guests to travel this summer and feel safe about doing so.