If you have a travel agency, or you are in the travel, tourism, and hospitality industries, the first thing you should do is power up your presence on the digital plane. Tried-and-tested traditional practices like offline ticketing or even simple internet research are fast becoming irrelevant. You have to be on the cutting-edge if you want to keep your travel-loving customers coming back to you. The good news is, you can transform your outdated travel agency by hiring a social media manager.

A social media manager, also known as a social media marketing manager, is more than just someone who posts your latest promos on Facebook account or creates those stunning landscapes for your Instagram page. He is also more than just your frontline defense when the occasional irate client complains. Hiring a professional now means entrusting him with your brand and its public relations image as well as marketing positioning. With the assistance and support of your marketing manager, he becomes the brand ambassador of your travel agency.

Hiring a social media manager can bolster your travel business:

Serves as a global storyteller

A social media manager is also involved with your content. That’s why the role is sometimes called the social media content manager. He owns the brand of your travel agency and, in the eyes of travel buffs and free spirits everywhere, the go-to guy as far as the exploration of this wonderful world is concerned. With this job, you give them the power and the authority to recommend best destinations, and give advice on the most economical arrangements, analyze the customer’s proposed itinerary. He can elaborate on why this city would be a better fit for the customer than that region. If your customer is into museums more than amusement parks, or he prefers mountain hiking over surfing on the beach, your social media manager can give him more than a couple of options that can make for a great holiday.

This also means connecting your travel customers with a bona fide storyteller. This social media wunderkind may not be a trained writer or editor, but he knows how to tell stories that can entice the customer into signing up with your agency. Through images, memes, infographics, and videos, he can weave a spectacular tale of how a breathtaking train ride throughout Europe need not be expensive, or how this lonely, newly discovered island in the Philippines is a tropical paradise that safeguards privacy at a premium.

A certified community builder

Hiring a professional to handle the social media job equates to giving the keys of your kingdom to a community builder. Remember that he talks and converses with your customers 24/7.  Again, don’t limit that function to a simple Q and A or stopping a crisis before it happens. A people-oriented, smart social media manager will be building relationships with your customers and encouraging them to post their selfies and stories on your page. Because these stories are first-hand and real, they will entice even more of your customers to participate — and maybe draw in newbies who, just by following the conversation, will be enjoined to try you out.

Get Real

Micro and Macro influencers are undeniably a hit but you can never underestimate the power of real people being on your platform sharing their successful travel experiences because of your services. A lot of sites are already capitalizing on the power of “real people” reviews which are known to contribute a lot to the trust and likability your market could view your company. Social Media has indeed produced a whole lot of photographers in today’s generation, imagine having that free marketing material you can share on your site but is missing out on because you lack the time to track these gems. Having a professional look over your social media platforms can ensure you don’t miss out on these valuable marketing opportunities and help share real people with real experiences on your site.

It does not just transform your outdated travel agency, but it also enables you to expand your market to new travelers who want to surprise themselves with an adventure or go to rare trails where only a few have gone before. One advertising survey says that 74 percent of all global travelers use social media while they’re traveling. Another 40 percent use their smart devices to do their online bookings. Another 59 percent keep on posting status updates about their planned vacations on social media.

This is a growing travel market that you would want to capture. Hiring a social media manager can revolutionize your travel agency and possibly boost its market reach. HOPLA has a team of expert remote social media experts who surf the various platforms like a pro, have a strong feel of the pulse of your target publics, and can represent you as a brand ambassador.