Native Content Campaigns and Why You Need One
In 2012 when I started Travel Curator, my in-house editorial platform, it was a place for me to store my notes on favorite places to travel and what makes a place so special – the food, the sites, the culture, the design. I was constantly being asked for my tried-and-tested travel recommendations – hotels in Paris, shops in Sydney, cafes in Madrid – and while it was an enjoyable exercise helping to curate other’s travel, I wanted one central space I could send people to for inspiration – and thus Travel Curator was born. Today, Travel Curator is a wholly-owned in-house editorial platform with hotel booking capabilities, geared towards wanderlust-craving individuals who are looking for the inside scoop on the best in hotels, restaurants, and events in their favorite destinations. In the past 12 months, Travel Curator’s hotel reviews have generated more than 1 million dollars in hotel room revenue for our featured properties. It’s because of native content and I’m here to tell you why it will work for you.
On some of the advantages of having access to an in-house editorial channel….
Alright, so you have that story perfectly crafted to touch upon all of your great new partnerships and some upcoming events on property – now what do you do with it? Traditional media is very much still important and a vital part of a campaign, however another way to get your story told and reach audiences is through native content. We all know that your content is only as good as its distribution. Having that in-house editorial platform, we can fully own all of our content and report on performance metrics within a few days, which is an offering that is not always promised when working with outside distribution channels. We started with writing hotel reviews, and later expanded to email marketing campaigns that are sent to a cool 351,000 subscribers. I also feel lucky to say that that number is growing every day. Once we saw that our audience was responding to our calls to action, we decided to dip into voting campaigns, custom content creation, dedicated e-blasts and more. I’ve seen The Brandman Agency grow from a traditional Public Relations firm to a full-service communications and e-marketing Agency.
On investing in a native content campaign…
Native content is story development commissioned by a brand, placed on an external site (such as Travel Curator) and distributed in many cases to a targeted audience through dedicated e-blasts. It’s usually developed with an editorial lens and is aligned with the voice of the publication. It’s a great way to reach and engage with a specific online audience and, most importantly, we are seeing it as an essential part of any communications campaign. Gone are the days where we solely rely on pitching and securing print articles, full page advertisements or 30-second spots on prime time to tell a brand’s story. We must generate our own news and find the right audiences where we can tell our stories.
On why native content works…
When we are able to control the narrative and distribute it in an organic way to the right audiences, we are able to measure and be a bit more flexible in how we respond. By paying attention to what your audience is gravitating towards, i.e. food and beverage promotions vs. golf packages, a hotel is able to analyze the results of the campaign and tweak accordingly.
On who it works for and how it can yield a big win…
With its built in distribution of over 351K subscribers, Travel Curator has the fool-proof formula to not only maximize a brand’s exposure and drive bookings through custom editorial content, but also has the capabilities to put brands at the top of “it” lists and win awards. Through scheduled content campaigns, email marketing strategy and a clever approach that we know will resonate with our audience, our nimble team utilizes earned, owned and paid media strategies to make a large impact and move the needle.
A luxury resort in the Caribbean came to us with a specific goal. They were looking to increase awareness and bring visitors back to the destination. By investing in a native content campaign, they were able to control their message, reach a specific audience and ultimately measure its success. Following the campaign, the resort saw direct bookings, a spike in traffic to their website and multiple inquiries. Not only that, they were able to see how their offer performed and what the audience was engaged with most.
Travel Curator has come a long way since its travel diary days and is constantly evolving. It marries together all of my passions – travel, editorial and communications. We love to partner with brands to create something better together. Drop me a line. Would love to work with you!
Select services include:
- Custom Content
- Email Newsletters
- Dedicated E-blasts
- Social Media Takeovers
- Influencer Campaigns and Partnerships
- Voting Campaigns
- Banner Ads