As with any business or brand that has a website, building links is an integral part not just to remain visible but to get found whenever someone looks for a product or service online.
While some experts believe link building no longer has a direct impact on SEO, some industry leaders believe otherwise.
However, for brands to thrive in the travel industry, they don’t only need link building to stay relevant, they need press coverage as well.
In this blog, we will discuss the most effective ways to building links as well as the methods to getting press coverage for your travel brand.
What are the 8 Ways to build links and get press coverage for your travel brand?
1. Guest Posts
In SEO, guest posting or guest blogging is writing and publishing content for another website that is within the same industry. The main goal is for the guest blogger to promote the brand he represents. This is where guest blogging services become important.
Guest posting is one of the best ways to building links and is beneficial to both parties, which are the host website and the guest blogger.
- The host website needs regular quality content for their audience to consume. Fresh and updated helpful content drives people to keep coming back to the site.
- Guest bloggers need websites where they can promote their brand.
Here are other benefits of guest posting for your travel brand:
- Brings traffic back to your site
- Boosts your domain authority
- Gets exposure for your brand
- Connects you with a new audience
- Build connections with peers in your niche or industry
2. Resource Pages
A resource page is a webpage on a website that contains a list of useful links and resources for a specific topic. Having your site listed as one of the resources on these pages is a great way to build links for your travel site.
Using resource pages for travel link building can help to increase your brand’s relevance. This is because the links listed on resource pages are related to the topic at hand.
Resource page link building is too immense to cover for this blog and so here are comprehensive guides from the SEO industry’s top content providers.
3. Press Trips
Press trips are paid trips for travel writers that are funded by organizations in exchange for content creation or exposure for a specific brand. It is a way for a state or country, city, resort, or a private brand to get positive publicity.
Examples of these organizations are:
- Public relations firms
- Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs)
- PR companies
- Private brands and
- a tourism body
The main purpose of press trips is to allow travel writers or journalists to write articles based on their personal experiences in a specific travel destination.
Here are some DMOs for press trip opportunities:
- International Media Marketplace (IMM)
- TBEX Europe and TBEX North America 2020
- Travel Media Association of Canada
- IPW | U.S. Travel Association
- Society of American Travel Writers
- North America Travel Journalists Association
- The World Travel Market (WTM)
- International Food, Wine & Travel Writers Association
- Travel Classics Writers Conference
- Visit Europe Media Exchange (VEMEX)
4. Product stunts
Product stunts are effective ways to get a lot of links and attention from the press. These stunts are often temporary and unconventional. They could be a hilarious YouTube video or an interactive landing page.
The content should be original and relevant to an audience and that it kindles strong emotional reactions. A product stunt that goes viral can make a brand famous overnight, as well as get tons of backlinks.
Although not travel-related, one good example was Sony’s cool, interactive landing page that has amassed more than a thousand backlinks.
The landing page was for Sony’s “be moved” campaign. It showcased the collaboration between the engineers and artists for the brand’s products.
5. Dream Job Stunt
Another method that is sure to get press coverage is the dream job stunt. The process involves creating an eye-catching job offer that often runs for a short period of time. It often comes with a contest with a hard deadline.
A dream job stunt can generate a lot of attention if done well.
The best example is when The New York Times launched its search for a travel writer in 2018. The contest gained tremendous attention especially from the thousands of writers who are vying for this dream job.
The winner of the contest was given a bucket list of assignments and travel to places such as South Korea, Chile, and New Orleans. Besides that, the winner becomes a content creator and the face of the brand.
Dream job stunts have become a new and exciting way for brands to get publicity and help writers jumpstart their careers in the travel niche.
6. Visual content
Image-based online content is considered as visual content. They come in the form of:
It is necessary that you include visual content as one of the ways to building links since visual social media platforms are growing rapidly.
For instance, a poll conducted by HubSpot reveals that the trend in online marketing is heading towards visual content.
The results showed that of all the business owners who participated in the poll:
• 33% plan to use Instagram
• 48% plan to add YouTube
• 39% plan to add Facebook video
…as distribution channels for the coming year.
Here are more stats to give you an idea of how important visual content is.
- Visual content has a higher chance of getting shared on social media than other forms of content according to a Buffer study in 2014.
- Next to blogging, which is 38%, the percentage of marketers who said that visual content is the most important form of online content used by businesses is 37%.
- Over 67% of small business owners admitted that video content had a direct effect on their business.
- According to research by LifeLearn in 2015, the people who have heard about an information only remember 10% of it 3 days later. On the other hand, people retained 65% of the same information that has a relevant image.
- There was an 80% increase in the people’s willingness to read a piece of content that has colored visuals (Xerox, 2014).
- A 2015 study by Social Media Examiner showed that 71% of digital marketers use their visuals in their social media marketing.
7. Surveys & Unique Data
Data is one of the ways PR agencies and businesses get decent press coverage, increase brand awareness, and direct sales. Getting press coverage through data is an excellent marketing tool for business owners and marketers alike.
Take note that people in general read data stories because they are insightful, useful, or surprising. However, it’s about how it affects people and it’s not always about the numbers.
Since data can be somewhat confusing and the main points often get buried, here are guide questions if you want to create content that’s worthy of the media’s attention.
- Does your content offer something new to the readers?
- Does it highlight a specific problem?
- Does it support or contradict a claim made by a person in power?
- Does it help the readers in making a decision easier such as how to vote or where to shop?
To make your content clear and meaningful, you have to deliver it in a way that makes it easier for people to relate to. You have to talk in terms of per person, per day, or per week.
8. Paid Links
Although buying for links is taboo and getting caught results in being penalized by Google, there are a handful of brands that are paying for placements on websites and travel blogs.
Surprisingly, there seems to be a demand for paid links in the travel industry, according to Ahrefs.
However, you should not attempt to buy links unless you have enough experience in the field.
There are no definitive ways to build links that will work 100% of the time. As a travel brand, you need to mix the methods for link building and getting press coverage that will align with your overall SEO and digital marketing strategy.
If you want brand awareness or exposure, you’ll need to do the stunts mentioned above.
Press trips and guest posts work well if you want to promote a specific set of products. Why? Getting a little bit more outcome in the content and to get it more product-oriented is under your control.
Surveys, data, and visual content can help you if your goal is to generate top-of-funnel organic traffic.