With time, social media is gradually gaining a lot of attention and becoming a source of income for people. This platform has provided a common foundation for many new professions, the most prominent being ‘social media influencer’ based on proving credibility in a particular field or domain in any field. Often regarded as Content Creators, these influencers share authentic knowledge with people related to a particular topic. The creators usually partner with several brands and promote their services, influencing the audience.
Belonging to diverse backgrounds, these influencers promote and advertise several brands, gaining the attention of huge audiences. Most of these influencers are celebrities who all prove to be great brand ambassadors for several products and their brands. The industries related to these influencers range from medicine to beauty, lifestyle to food, and tours and travel.
Tourism and social media
The word ‘Tourism’ was used very first in 1811 and is derived from the word ‘tour, which in Latin means ‘to turn to Lathe.’ Tourism is related to travelling and exploring new places as a sort of escape from the monotonous life. Tourism follows a predetermined path and is also gaining quite a lot of recognition from people all over the world. It has also become one of the most economic activities in the world. There are several destinations and places that have become economically active due to tourism activities. But the question arrives here: Where do we get information about these places? How are we made aware of its impotence and unexplored beauty? And there are many such unanswered questions in anyone’s mind while getting ready for a tour. Aren’t they? All information is not satisfactorily available online or through any travel agency. Here comes the role of social media.
In our day-to-day life, only we can witness the importance of social media and how it has become one of the chief sources of information for the people. Some of the best examples of social platforms are Twitter, Instagram, Various news apps, and many more. Here on these social platforms, one can get up to date on various trending news. People here post their thoughts, pictures, and other updates, either related to their life, politics, astronomy, medicines, business, or travel and tourism. Among these, some become famous for the content they produce and share, and they gradually gain quite a lot of attention and praise like a celebrity, thus are regarded as – ‘Microcelebrity’. These people are the major promoter of the content of a particular domain. In the same way, the tourism industry too is getting hugely promoted through these influencers. Various travel companies offer these influencers to travel and create content encouraging the common people to explore these destinations. Thus nowadays, tourism and social media go hand in hand.
Tourism marketing by social media influencers
Tourism is always gravely affected by social media, as now most of the audience is diverting towards social media for taking out information in diverse fields. The relation between the influencers, destination, and promoter brands can be portrayed through a flow chart. Here both the variables i.e. Influencers and destination, both affect the brand image. Thus it is the responsibility of these social influencers to promote the brands ad promote tourism altogether. Influencers use various ways of promoting and creating authentic content. Some of the ways to follow by them are:
As the name suggests, vlogging is a video media uploaded on several platforms to encourage and promote tourism. These influencers usually record their journey, and personal experiences to let the audience know about these destinations, encouraging tourism. Vlogging has given birth to several influencers like Pewdipie, Ashish Chanchalani, Kold, Bhuvam Bham, and many more. These people vlog and gain millions of subscribers. Similarly, various vloggers focus on making travel-oriented videos like Sam Kolder, Just Kay, and many others also focus on cinematography. Similarly, there are some YouTubers like We Wild Roam, On the Roam, or Ronnie and Barty, who all travel to places, enjoy inclusive stays and share their experiences throughout. Thus, vlogging can be branched into various domains like vlogging, food, lifestyle, and many more.
Blogging is composed of the word blog, meaning a detailed description of day-to-day life. This term leads to the birth of blogging, which is one of the chief marketing strategies of every brand. Blogging aims to promote the product and uplifting its reach for the people. Influencers use this strategy to brand a particular domain, cosmetics, travel, food, medicines, and many more. For travel bloggers, blogging refers to writing down and journaling about their personal experiences and activities throughout their stay. These bloggers are hired by several marketing companies and other travel agencies to promote and broadcast their products online.
Stories and Reels
Another method of promoting content on social media is through stories or reels. These stories are created in picturesque form with images of places, food, music, dance, culture, or the social life of these unexplored destinations. Reels are more or less the same as stories as they share photos and videos in the format of a motion picture, promoting and encouraging tourism. Thus, stories and reels have become one of the most important sources of information for people. Among all the social media, Instagram is one major platform for sharing these reels and stories to provide content to the people.
Growth of Tourism through Influencers
Several tourist destinations recently have seen footfall resulting from their branding and promotion by various influencers. Several destinations are gaining attention from worldwide audiences, inviting wanderers to explore the beauty of new places. These destinations, despite being unexplored, are gradually gaining a lot of recognition. The influencers provide a bunch of content and information, making it a prime task to explore even the tiniest bits of the places.
Some of the famous travel influencers are:
Ronnie And Barty:
This famous couple travels around the globe especially around India, exploring several unexplored and undiscovered jewels in the country. Their channel covers all their adventures, their stays, and the experiences experienced by them all through their explorations. This channel has gained quite several subscribers from all over the world.
Fun for Louis
Living a nomadic life, Louis Cole is a rising YouTuber gaining a lot of subscribers on youtube. He documents his travel journey, experiences, and other adventures wrapped up in a documentary format. His videos have gained several views owing to the great quality content and the diversity portrayed in them. The videos are composed of his real-life adventures showcased with the adventures, which all make the produced content worth watching.
Belonging to the capital city, Harish Bali, a 51 years old lively and adventurous guy, started his youtube journey in 2017. His vlogs promote not only the destinations but also its food, people, culture, and art. His vlogs gained quite a lot of attention when he also started documenting the village lives, and the daily activities of the locals around the offbeat villages and tourist destinations.
Kara and Nate
Another couple who has gained a lot of attention from travel enthusiasts from all over the world is Kara and Nate. This couple not only does post-travel videos but also provides a budget required for further travel. They provide information about the whole travel package with various options available to choose from.
Thus, we can notice the relation between travel and social media influencers, and how they can promote and encourage exploration of several unexplored places all around the world.
- Impact of influencer marketing on travel and tourism (2021) ijariie, Available at: https://ijariie.com/AdminUploadPdf/IMPACT_OF_INFLUENCER_MARKETING_ON_TRAVEL_AND__TOURISM_ijariie13643.pdf (Accessed: 11 August, 2023)
- Travel influencers: the new key actors in tourism promotion ( 17 March , 2022) Hospitality, Available at: https://hospitality-on.com/en/tourism/travel-influencers-new-key-actors-tourism-promotion (Accessed: 11 August, 2023)
- Under the influence, Michelle Baran (2020) Travel weekly, Available at: https://www.travelweekly.com/Travel-News/Travel-Technology/social-media-influencers (Accessed: 11 August, 2023)
- The impact of social media influencers in tourism (12 May, 2018) Routledge, Available at: https://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/bKtRaeNCuGZfJppk9Nwf/full (Accessed: 12 Auguast, 2023)
- Exploring the influencers’ role in sustainable tourism (January, 2021) Science Direct, Available at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0264837719323634 (Accessed: 12 August, 2023)
- Influencer marketing strategies (9 February, 2022) Wordstream, Available at: https://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2015/02/26/influencer-marketing#:~:text=Social%20media%20is%20hands%2Ddown,check% %20out%20who%20they%20follow. (Accessed: 12 August, 2023)
- Blogging by Randy Duermyer (29 November, 2022) The Balance, Available at: https://www.thebalancemoney.com/blogging-what-is-it-1794405 (Accessed: 12 August, 2023)
- Ronnie and Barty: The travel couple coordinated for life! By Aditi Singh Rajput (30 July, 2022) Social Nation, Available at: https://www.socialnationnow.com/ronnie-and-barty-travel-couple/ (Accessed: 12 August, 2023)
- Meet Fun for Louis (16 April, 2023) Pilot Plans, Available at: https://www.pilotplans.com/blog/funforlouis (Accessed: 12 Augusat, 2023)
- Kara and Nate (2020 Karaandnate, Availabe at: https://karaandnate.com/ (Accessed: 12 August, 2023)