What I’m making here has never been attempted for the tour and activity sector — at least not to this scale. I’m writing Lookers to Bookers to help tour operators grow their businesses even further and to open their eyes to the potential they have in front of them.
I am creating a marketing book and online video series specifically for tours and activity businesses.
Lookers to Bookers will not be just another general marketing book. It will be a crystallisation of 26 years of marketing knowledge, and 13 years in the tourism marketing sector, into one practical resource, giving you the specialist tools you need to market your tours and activity business.
This often leaves business owners disheartened and frustrated, and they tend to give up after a few weeks of trying to reinvigorate their marketing efforts.
Lookers to Bookers will, of course, advise you on what you should be doing, but it will also include practical worksheets and guides to help you take your newly acquired insight and turn it into an increased customer base and, ultimately, increased revenue. Each section will also be accompanied by online videos revisiting and reinforcing how the advice I provide can be used to improve your tours and activity business.
To help you, the book will follow the progress of a fictional tour company, showing you the company’s performance at each stage. This, I hope, will make it easier for the reader to envisage their own business in the same position, going on a similar journey.
You may be wondering why am I writing this book and who am I to offer any advice to this sector?
I have 26 years’ experience working in brand development and marketing, and I’ve spent the last 13 years running my own marketing company, the Tourism Marketing Agency.
My client base is truly international, with around 80% of clients based outside of the UK, where I am based. I have worked with some of the biggest players in the industry, including Gray Line – the oldest and largest sightseeing company in the world.
I have helped clients all over Europe, The Americas, Asia, and even Antarctica! This broad range of clients has been challenging and exciting; it has helped me and my team develop considerable knowledge and expertise in a huge variety of different destinations and tourism markets.
I have won numerous awards over the years, such as Best Marketing Agency, Best Tourism Website and Businessman of the Year in 2018. I have also had the pleasure of speaking at numerous tourism events, such as Arival, the Scottish Tourism Alliance, several Gray Line conferences, and Landing Madrid.
I also provide lots of free marketing advice though my online chanel, The Digital Tourism Show, which I make available on a dedicated Facebook group. This group is free to join; it’s where I ‘hang out’, and it’s also where members post up questions for me to answer. I have also posted over 200 videos on the Digital Tourism show so far; all members have unlimited access to these videos.
I have lived and breathed marketing for the tours and activities sector for years and this book is my attempt to compile what I’ve learned into a practical resource for anyone who needs some help turning their own lookers into bookers
The book conatins 404 pages of brand and marketing advice including…
Who Do you Think You Are? — This section will contain a brand workshop that will help you and your team find out where your business currently sits and the path you should take to grow your business. If you are just starting up a tour business, then this section is one of the first steps you should take.
I will help you find your brand voice and personality, helping you to create a consistent message across all your media outlets.
I will even advise on how you should create, or change, your brand logo.
Laying The Foundations — These are the things you need in place before you think about marketing your business.
This section will cover many elements, looking at how to build a lead generating website, selecting the right booking system for your needs, the best practices for setting up your social media and TripAdvisor, and whether you should use an Online Travel Agent.
Know Thy Neighbour (and your customers) — will cover how you can research your destination, sector, your competitors and customers, all of which helps you know who you should target and how you should market yourself to this target audience.
Become a Creative Content Machine — with this section, I will provide you with the tools and knowledge you need to create streams of content to use across all marketing channels. I will even help you create over 100 pieces of content from one video!
I will cover topics such as Video Strategies, How to build your email lists legally (and responsibly), and even how you should implement a phone strategy.
This section will also show you how you can create a super successful Facebook campaign for only $5 per day.
Implimentation — provides you with the tools and knowhow to implement your strategies, including when and how to post new content.
Setting The Budget — covers a question I get asked a lot… “what should my marketing budget be”. I will give you a formula I use when advising the many businesses I work with each year.
Report. Review. Repeat — I will explain how you can look over the data you collect and how to use it to further refine your marketing strategies and grow your business.
As mentioned previously, most sections will also be accompanied by online videos and/or worksheets, so you can take in the information at a rate that suits you, helping you fully understand how the advice I provide can be used within your tour and activity business.
This book will be self published at the end of June. I believe it will become an important resource that will help tour and activity businesses improve their marketing practices.
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