We have seen some negative press in the media recently regarding Instagram influencers. “Luxury hotel overwhelmed by influencers asking for free rooms” published The Independent, which I am sure any hoteliers reading this will be able to relate to and could be making you question if this is a method of marketing you should continue to consider in the future.
It is important to remember that there are still many reputable travel bloggers and influencers out there who work in collaboration with hotels, promoting their brand to a loyal following.
Although marketing purely via influencers may not be the way forward, our team at Mr. Highline is in agreement that working with trusted bloggers will complement your current PR strategy and can have a big impact on your brand.
But how do you tell a reputable blogger and one who understands good aesthetics amongst the crowd? Although it is always important to consider any social media or online collaborations on an individual basis, we have outlined below three tips for helping you choose only the very best bloggers and influencers to work with.
Discuss their offering
Whether you are approached by a travel blogger or are on the hunt for a reputable source to work with, discussing what they plan to offer your brand should be at the top of your agenda. Points to discuss could include but are not limited to:
- Subject – Will they be reviewing something specific, for example dinner in your restaurant or are they looking to review your brand in general?
- Type of coverage – i.e. Instagram post, blog or vlog
- Amount of coverage – What will the length of their content be?
- Links – Will they be happy to link any articles or social media posts back to your site?
- Social media engagement – Will your brand receive any social media posts in addition to a review and does the blogger plan to post on their channels promoting your brand during their stay?
- Time scale – How long after the bloggers stay will they be publishing any coverage and on what day of the week will they be scheduling them?
It’s important to know the blogger you choose to collaborate with has a great track record, the right experience and the ability to write engaging content for their followers that is going to promote your brand in the correct light. The following questions should give you an idea as to whether a blogger is going to be able to achieve this for you:
- How long have they been writing travel content?
- Can they show you any examples of previous content they have written for similar brands?
- What is their career history? Have they previously worked in the travel and hospitality industry?
Obviously, a strong following is important and these figures are something any blogger should send over to you straight away. However, don’t just look at their follower count, have a scan through their posts and check what sort of engagement they are getting. Are people liking their content consistently and do they reply to comments from followers?
Having reviewed all the above, this should provide you with the basis for deciding on any potential bloggers looking to collaborate with your brand. It should also help you weigh up if their offer matches any requests they have. As with any press trips from traditional media outlets, brands will normally offer at least part of a stay complimentary. However, this should certainly not be expected and is entirely at the discretion of the brand.
Of course, we completely appreciate that no matter how much information a blogger provides, it is always good to talk an opportunity through with colleagues and industry experts. Here at Mr.Highline we are social media experts, creating original and engaging content. So, if you would like us to work with you on your online presence, we would love to hear your story! Get in touch here.