The last two years have been tough for the majority of the travel industry. From airlines and travel agents to hotels and tour operators, business has been slow with only a dim light at the end of the tunnel. But as the world begins to reopen, people worldwide are clamouring for a holiday outside their own city, providing travel brands on TikTok with a great opportunity to grow their following.
TikTok is the place to be right now
There’s no denying that travel brands on TikTok have had huge success, reaching new audiences and driving sales. Roughly half of TikTok’s audience is under the age of 34, so if you’re trying to reach Gen Z and Millenials, there’s no better place.
Instagram has established itself as a reputable and popular social platform, but TikTok has opened new doors. It’s available in over 150 countries, has over 1 billion active monthly users, and has been downloaded over 2.6 billion times worldwide. And considering it launched less than five years ago, that’s impressive.
Not only does it have lots of users, but TikTok users tend to stick around on the app more than any other platform. A user opens TikTok 8 times per day and spends an average of 52 minutes per day in the app. And considering the average TikTok video lasts around half a minute, that’s a lot of videos being watched every day.
But all that aside, TikTok is a huge opportunity for brands to dive into the short-form video space. Its receptive algorithm and fast turnover cycle for trends, means brands can jump on and experiment with their content until something sticks.
Travel brands on TikTok are thriving
As it’s such a visual medium, TikTok really lends itself to beautiful and aspirational travel content. The hashtag #tiktoktravel has drawn over 25 billion views, while #wanderlust and #traveldiaries have 1.1 and 2.2 billion views, respectively.
If you’re new to the platform, it can definitely be a tricky app to get your head around. So we thought we’d show you some examples of stellar content created by travel brands on TikTok, that you can take inspiration from.
Travel brands on TikTok that are nailing their content
Launching their first TikTok campaign just earlier this year, The American airline made waves by asking users to post about their favourite vacation, using the hashtag #FavoriteTripChallenge.
Considering most travel-related trends and videos on TikTok are based around video dumps or sharing old footage, it was a great way to jump into the market with a bang. The campaign garnered over 19.5 million views in its first 36 hours, thanks in part to TikTok promoting the campaign on the Discover page.
Over the last year, this travel website owned by Expedia turned to TikTok to acquire Gen Z customers, and it worked. They created a huge TikTok campaign that garnered over a billion views. How? They brought twenty established Creators on board and asked them to make a video for their followers, sharing why they were ready for a post-pandemic getaway and where they would ultimately like to go. They encouraged their followers to do the same, announcing that the best video would win a $50,000 trip on a private jet.
The brand even hired TikTok megastar Jason Derulo—who has more than 47 million followers—as a judge for the digital contest.
Tourism New Zealand
During the height of the pandemic, when borders were closed and no one was travelling, New Zealand’s tourism board wanted to stay top of mind for their Australian audience. So they launched an online gameplay walkthrough of the country, allowing Australians to ‘visit’ without leaving the safety of their homes. TikTok was a huge part of the marketing strategy for the game, titled Play NZ.
Tourism NZ enlisted a popular local influencer to make a ‘choose your character’ style video to promote the game, which they then promoted as an in-feed ad. The video had 2.7 million impressions, with an engagement rate of 3.73% and a view-through rate of 2.64%.
How to master TikTok as a travel brand
Now that we’ve covered some examples, let’s see how travel brands on TikTok can find inspiration and master the platform themselves.
Embrace Spark ads
Spark ads—TikTok’s take on branded content ads—are regular in-feed videos that you can promote to reach a very wide audience. Brands can push their own posts or an influencer’s post with their permission, and TikTok will label it as sponsored content. And as we know, branded content is 22 times more engaging than regular advertisements.
Jump on trends
Creating videos around trending audio and challenges is a quick way to get views and push your content out into the algorithm, but don’t just make content for the sake of it.
After following other brands within your niche (e.g. budget travel, beach holidays etc.), spend a few hours scrolling through the app. Get a feeling for the kind of content that works, the trends that are taking off in the travel space, and how you can throw your hat in the ring.
Work with influencers
Influencer content works. More than 80% of social media users report they are very likely to follow an influencer’s recommendation, while brand recall is 59% higher for branded influencer content than other digital advertising.
Working with Creators who have already established a strong following on TikTok will expose you to a whole new audience. Choose your influencers wisely, do your research and find Creators who match your brand vibe.
At TRIBE, we aim to streamline the influencer marketing process, helping brands align with Creators for partnerships that make sense (and, of course, are mutually beneficial). With a full TikTok integration launching on TRIBE in the new year, learn more about how we can help your brand shine on TikTok.