[0:20] Intro
[1:06] A Brief background of Zapwater.
[2:43] What is different in PR and Digital Marketing for travel?
[7:13] How do you view the path to purchase in tourism, whether the demand exists in the customer’s mind or not?
[13:15] How do you maintain momentum as people are choosing their destination?
[16:03] What is next in the PR world?
[17:43] How important are measurements in in the tourism PR business?
[18:45] Final Thoughts

Chris is joined by David Zapata, president and founder of Zapwater Communications. They talk about his company’s experience in travel and tourism. With topics including some background on Zapwater, the difference between PR and Digital Marketing for Travel instead of other enterprises, how to create and inspire demand for specific locations, and the future of digital marketing in the travel and tourism PR industry.

The big question in tourism P.R. and marketing is how to balance being where people are (mobile, TV, social, search, local SEO, events) in a digital world with the importance of experience, even to the point of introducing off-the-beaten-path destinations that most travelers might not have have on their radar. Unlike some digital purchase decisions in which people are already settled on a product, but not a brand, tourism requires starting from scratch and convincing customers of the unique experiences that certain destinations offer.

As an example, David shares examples for two different countries that Zapwater among their recent work: Serbia and Finland.

The tools they use to bring awareness to the countries are strategically designed to first make a massive general push to their target demographic followed by more specific and sustained effort from trusted influencers. David describes landing deals for both The Bachelor and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue to be set in Finland, which introduced and put a spotlight on the country, reaching a large swath of their target audience.

Following those massive media hits, Zapwater hired trusted bloggers, media, and travelers to recreate the experiences on their own and showcase them on their social media accounts. Having a group of bloggers and other social media stalwarts that are trusted by large groups of people is an invaluable tool for tourism especially. It gives companies the ability to showcase the experiences in a personal way that is impossible otherwise. The approach is fully integrated.

But all of this work needs to be supported by metrics showing actual increases in tourism attributable to the efforts of agencies like Zapwater. As the industry grows and becomes more mobile in the digital realm, the avenues to keep track of this data are growing as well, which David and Chris discuss.


Zapwater Communications

— Visit Finland – Zapwater Communications Case Study

Expedia Report: Multi-National Travel Trends in the Tourism Industry

How Much Should a Hotel Spend on Paid Social Ads? — the Matchnode Blog

–intro and outro music from our friends at Sabers: https://sabersmusic.bandcamp.com/releases