Many of us have packed up the van, headed off to some mind-blowingly stunning park, pristinely breaking surf spot or climbed a formidable mountain and thought, Wow, wouldn’t it be nice if I could turn this into more than just a hobby? Make today the day you get started with some of the killer tips and tricks in this blog post ~
With the launch of podcasts by Outside Magazine and Apple selecting female-centric podcast She Explores as well as American hiking-focused podcast Sounds of the Trail for the frontpage of their all-important iTunes Store, it’s clear that there is a strong desire for audio content about travelling. And you only have to spend five seconds on Instagram to see how this is even more true when it comes to pictures and video.
So how can you turn your personal voyages of discovery into social media gold? Luckily serial online marketer and Frequency Horizon correspondent Rafi Chowdhury is willing to spill the beans…
How to Build a Huge Social Media Following with Your Travel Photos and Videos
When you think of ways to build a social media following, paying Google for ads and blogging come to mind.
But paying for Google ads can be expensive, while blogging… Well, do I have to even go into how time-consuming that can be??
But don’t worry. If you are like me: Love to travel and want to actually build a solid following on social media around your traveling adventures, there are some Hacks I can teach you guys on how to get to that million followers you have been dreaming about.
- Identify your target audience and target platform to reach that audience.
So, what I mean by this is: You need to first figure out where your audience is hanging out. Are they all on Instagram or Snapchat? Do they spend most of their time scrolling through Facebook, or are they hash tagging away on Twitter?
Until and unless you can identify who you are targeting on social media, you won’t know where to post your content.
To do this, simply pay attention to your audience in real life and see what platform they spend most of their time in.
You can also look at other travel bloggers and social media Experts who post about traveling and see where they have accounts and tend to post most often.
For example, a few months ago I got to go to the Oscar’s After party and met World Traveler, Alyssa Ramos.
I was very fascinated by her because she writes for The Huffington Post, has been to more than 3 dozen countries, and is super cute too!
Of course, when I got home, I began stalking her on social media. I realized very quickly that she was very famous on Instagram.
Her Instagram account has some of the coolest travel pictures I have ever seen, period!
So, to her, Instagram is of great value because she knows her audience is active on there so hats where she posts the most and is the most active.
She also has a decent following on Twitter and Facebook. However, she isn’t very active on Pinterest or LinkedIn. Why not?
She doesn’t need to! After all, her followers are all on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
So, before you invest any serious efforts into getting your travel photos and videos out there, you have to first consider which platform you need to be on.
Not every social media network is worth fighting with to figure out. Figure out what makes the most sense for you.
- Start adding your audience to your chosen social networks and start growing!
This one might seem obvious, but it sometimes surprises me to see how little people take advantage of this simple and obvious tactic!
If you want to get your followers to see your content, why spend thousands of dollars to advertise to them? Why blog for days and days and hope it ranks in Google and they MIGHT see it.
Instead, just start to add them on your social media accounts!
Like seriously, step outside of your comfort zone for once!
It’s okay to add a random person on Facebook if you think you might be able to benefit from networking with them. After all, you probably have something of value to off them. That’s why you’re pursuing your online marketing. You believe what you do could be meaningful to others. I mean, let be honest, if you didn’t you’d probably be out at the beach right now or grabbing drink with your homies.
The tech revolution has brought a lot of headaches, that’s for sure. But, don’t forget, it’s also added the freedom to connect with people you probably never would have met in person otherwise. Use it.
- On Facebook, find a couple of competitor’s personal accounts or find a couple of people who already have a large following from the group you want to target.
- Then, log into your Facebook from your mobile phone.
- Go to your selected competitor’s Facebook friend’s list.
- Facebook will show people that person is friends with who have a lot of mutual friends with you
- Start adding all of these people to your account
- You will soon have a very targeted network of people who are in your niche
And for Twitter, here is a post I wrote which explains how to use Twitter to get targeted followers very quickly!
On LinkedIn, just search for relevant people with niche-specific keyword and filter according to location. Then, just keep adding everyone until you get to 30,000 connections, which is the limit on LinkedIn.
You can easily use a platform such as Upwork and find a freelancer who might be as cheap as just a couple of bucks on hour. Get him or her to perform these micro-actions while you spend your time traveling and taking awesome pictures and videos of your travels!
- Start posting your photos and video and start promoting away!
You have been waiting for this moment. Yeah, it’s a simple step but its hugely important.
Every single photo and video you take during your vacation needs to get posted to social media.
I’m not saying you should just upload these things all at once and be done with it. Nope. You need to tell a story with each photo and video. Seriously. And, how do you do that?Simple! The key is to posts great text to go with your photos. Ask a question. Get your audience to engage by getting them to respond with the best caption suggestions. People eat this stuff up. It’s social media gold.
Another idea to drive social media responses to your photography is to place two pictures next to each other and ask your fans which they like better.
You could ask where your audience would rather go if they could travel anywhere in the world. There is an art to it, but it starts by reaching out. There are a million different things you can try. Be creative!
As for videos:
When you shoot your videos, again, keeping the storyteller mentality in mind is really important. Think of it in terms of beginning, middle and end.
It’s really easier than it sounds. If you have time or can afford to hire someone, edit the videos and give them catchy Titles and Thumbnails.
Basically, what you are trying to do is get people to click and watch your video. A formidable task right?
Here’s the thing: Facebook now auto plays vids, so half the work is already done for you! Just make sure to create videos which are interesting enough that people will keep watching.
Once you have your content uploaded on all your social media platforms, be sure to do outreaches. Ideally, you want to connect with others in your niche who have a large following.
Find some way to make it a win-win and get them to share your content! People are usually willing to help you out if they can tell you aren’t just in it for yourself. Providing some engagement or original content for an influencer can go a long way. Even the biggest wanderlust rockstars and social media fiends know a genuinely interested follower with an active social media account is worth its weight in gold.
So take some time, give a little, and you’ll be able to leverage influencer traffic and bring it to your site, social media pages, squeeze page, or wherever you want these people to go.
Be sure to also reply and engage with anyone who comments or likes your content.
This is very vey important, actually.
You always want to maintain a transparent relationship with your followers on social media. People are interested in other people. They are interested in other people’s lives.
So, when you give personalized replies to anyone who comments on your post or shares it, you are directly connecting with your followers and building a sense of loyalty with these people. They will be much more likely to comment on your stuff the next time around.
Does it work? Absolutely!
I tried my hand at this when I started my own brand and was surprised at how well these tricks translated into a solid following.
Will they work for you? Totally! But you’ve gotta put in a little digital elbow grease.
If you are willing to put forth the efforts and create interesting content, and then put three times more efforts in promoting that content, it’s only a matter of time before you become not only a world class traveler, but also a social media Rockstar traveler! 😉
Comment below and let us know what other strategies worked for you guys! 😀