Whether you are a social media guru or a timid beginner, everyone finds creating posts for social media to be easy sometimes and other times it is a struggle. I am willing to bet this is the reason a lot of travel agents find themselves falling into the trap of irregular posting. Some days you may be particularly inspired by a topic, and a few days later can’t think of a thing worthy of posting, so you don’t post a thing. Then a day or two becomes a week or two and your Facebook account gets stale.Ever look through other agent’s Facebook pages and think, “How do they come up with all this?” Everyone does – even those people you think have it all together. So, give yourself a break and stop comparing yourself to others!But how can YOU make this easier for yourself? I think one of the best ways is to create a calendar to guide you. This doesn’t have to be complicated. I like using a paper calendar (you can print one out here) and writing out topics. Do it in pencil (remember those?) so you can easily erase and make adjustments. The hour or two you spend doing this for the next few months will save you a lot of headaches later.Of course, how many topics you need is determined by how often you post. Many experts suggest travel agents post to Facebook 3 to 5 times per week, and every day for Instagram. Some agents post every day on both platforms and have great interaction, and some get great success with less posting. But if you post less than 3 times each week you risk people forgetting you. Remember, not every post you make will be seen by all of your fans! Facebook’s algorithms mean that it is likely your clients will only see a portion of what you post unless they actively engage with you. But even if they actively engage with you, it is likely they won’t see everything unless they follow very few people.Let’s assume you want to really jump into posting and plan to post 5 times per week. If you are going to plan for the next 3 months, you will need a lot of posts! I think the easiest way to start is to come up with categories for those posts to fall into. Here are a few suggestions:
- Helpful travel tips
- Destination information
- Vendor-focused posts
- Stories from your own travel
- Inspirational stories from your clients
- Travel trivia/interesting facts
- News and updates
If you are going to post 5 times a week you could pick 5 of the categories above and post about each category each week. Or you might want to focus more on one category than another. Variety is the spice of life, so make sure you are mixing it up during the week. The exception to this is when you’re traveling and you probably want to post from your travel. Sort of like a “takeover” of your own account.For some people writing the category on each day and coming up with the post later is sufficient. For others, you may want to come up with more details about what you are going to post. Always keep your audience in mind and post about what will matter to them. If your ideal client is a multigenerational family group, that is a different series of posts than for an agent focusing on adventure travel for millennials. Don’t know what your ideal client looks like? That’s a different problem that you need to address ASAP! Contact me and I can make some suggestions on how to get help with that.Of course, there are going to be times that things will come up that you want to share with your followers that don’t fit into your schedule. That’s OK! Repurpose that day’s topic somewhere else.A few suggestions:
- Don’t go overboard on selfies. People are really getting tired of them. If you want to include pictures of yourself, have someone take a picture of you doing something, not just posing.
- Mix it up and in addition to traditional posts do a Facebook Live. Unsure how to do that? Check out this great article from my colleague Vanessa McGovern!
- Make sure to use great pictures in your posts, but they don’t have to be your pictures. One of the most wonderful things about travel is the beautiful places than lend themselves so well to image posts. Of course, make sure you are using images that are not copyrighted (so don’t just download any image from Google). There are free options such as www.unsplash.com that offer images to use for personal use.
The great news is that you work in one of the most interesting industries in the world! People want to see your posts and want to hear about the wonderful destinations in the world you can send them to! So, share your “eye candy” with them and your knowledge!And I would bet from time to time you have people see your posts and ask, “How do I become a travel agent?” We would love for you to tell them about our new-to-the-industry training program: Travel MBA. It is a unique program because it combines online learning with coaching and mentorship. Travel MBA grads build businesses that allow them to leave their full-time jobs and truly live the laptop lifestyle!If I can be of service to you, just email me at email@example.com