Travel Advertising and Destination Marketing Through Pictures

Posted on July 30, 2009

If pictures are truly worth a thousand words, tourists and travelers are singing songs in unison about destinations worldwide on photo sharing sites. Photo sharing is a genre of social media that often gets left out of discussions around the social media watercooler conversations about Facebook, Twitter and MySpace. This is something CVB and tourism bureaus alike need to become more familiar with.

One of the most popular photo sharing sites is Flickr. Available on iPhone and most smart phones as an application, people can browse by keyword search hundreds of thousands of photos submitted by users. Only registered users are allowed to submit pictures, but anyone is able to browse. A keyword search of “Boston” in Flickr results in over 2 million photos. You can sort the results by revelvance, most recently posted or the most interesting. Here, pictures of Fenway Park, Prudential Center/downtown district, sunsets and sunrises and Boston Harbor put site visitors in the city without ever leaving their computers.

How is this beneficial to your CVB or tourism bureau? Say you live in a much smaller town. We’ll use Hueytown, AL as an example. A simple keyword search of Hueytown on Flickr still yields 658 pictures, showcasing the high school football team, popular restaurants, local churches and various home pictures of snowdays (a rare occasion). If you are trying to promote tourism for Hueytown or any surrounding city, you can see what everyone else sees when they view your destination. If you like what you see, you can involve your residents in photo opportunities to showcase your tourism marketing plan. If not, setting up a Flickr account takes less than 5 minutes and you can post your own content to show off your destination.

Flickr isn’t the only photo sharing social networking tool out there. Photobucket, Shutterfly, Zooomr, Picasa and Facebook are all similar programs that meet the same goal.

Not sure where to begin with social media building your CVB or tourism bureau online brand? When you sign on with Simple Tourism for our social media optimization package, you have the option of customizing a social media presence as it suits your business or bureau. Want to attract a specific demographic? We will find the right platform for you. Contact us today for more information or a free quote.

Jessica Swink is a freelance writer specializing in articles about SEO for travel Web sites and professional SEO and Internet marketing services.

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