These past couple years have been the ‘Years of Images’, and as a result, the social media landscape is changing for all industries concerned!

Social sites that are predominately visual, such as Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube (and recently added to the group is the time-sensitive mobile app, SnapChat), have all grown in popularity and in visual Internet Marketing.  This is especially true in the travel and tourism industries  and they offer incredible opportunities.

These benefits include marketing and promotion in terms of showing visual appeal of the destination or hotel, they help companies/brands to connect with their current and potential customers, assist in building rapport and trust amongst them, and offer added value to customers.

Photographers, travellers, decorators, designers and food enthusiasts alike are all starting to turn to these platforms as a means of visual inspiration and of achieving the right balance between promotion, inspiration and discussion, which can also help to encourage brand evangelism.

The Power of Pictures

Humans have always been visual creatures. From a young age, we are taught to create flow charts, thinking maps and diagrams in order to make the connections between certain concepts and grasp new ideas. According to an article found on thinkingfoundation.org, our mind has the ability to absorb 36,000 images every minute – imagine the marketing possibilities! Imagine the clutter!

With online consumers now searching multiple sites at once, companies need to focus on developing content that is able to communicate their message across to their “short-attention span plagued audience” within a matter of seconds – never mind minutes! More and more research is proving that images truly are the most engaging and powerful content to use, and more engagement equals higher conversion rates.

Now more than ever, visual content is starting to change the way companies and brands communicate and distribute information as strong visuals are being used as a form of experiential marketing.

Experiential Marketing

A powerful form of marketing,  experiential marketing allows consumers to experience a brand and immerse them within that brand’s culture. This forms an emotional connection between the consumer and the brand – and nowadays, brand loyalty is what matters!

Images and videos can now be used to give viewers valued information that can not only give an in-depth look into a company but also provide invaluable insight into a destination that you may want them to visit (for example), or a cultural tradition you may want them to experience.

This form of imagery will not only communicate your message to your target market, but it will also take them there, and get them to use their own imagination to fill in the blanks.

Travel and Tourism is visual. Embrace it!

Travel and tourism is a highly competitive industry, both off- and online, and therefore it is vital that a company is able to establish itself and find its own edge that will ensure it stands out from the noise. Creating clever, visually powerful messages will help you to achieve success.