At this year’s ITB Berlin Convention, Lola Akinmade Akerström, Co-Founder, NordicTB.com, spoke about “Creating Natural Ambassadors For Travel Brands And Destinations”
The key theme was the need to promote destinations through high quality and authentic digital storytelling told by “natural ambassadors.”
“Nowadays the travel industry is saturated with numbers that may not mean anything,” she told ITB Berlin News. “So what we’re trying to teach destinations: you want to create quality content about your destinations, SEO optimised, that lasts.”
When potential visitors are researching your destination, they need to easily find content that “represents your destination comprehensively, properly and has a long life,” Åkerström said.
Such quality storytelling demands that inspired travel bloggers and authors “who already love your brand” have “the freedom to write or speak in their own voice,” the Stockholm-based writer and photographer added. “The strength is the flexibility to discover things organically.” The result will be quality, authentic and above all timeless narratives about destinations.
With Åkerström’s work having appeared in publications such as National Geographic Traveller, BBC, CNN, The Guardian, Travel + Leisure, Travel Channel, Lonely Planet, and many more, Åkerström has the inside track on the best in travel writing. With NordicTB she is giving destinations to chance to utilize lasting stories by nding the best ways – often on a limited budget – to connect with writers and photographers who already have an af nity with a travel brand or destination.
To this end, travel authors are often sourced by tracking their existing content discovered online. “You can find them by all the conversations that are going on about your brand on social media,” says Åkerström. The goal is to “reach out to them, see what they do. That’s how you start pooling natural ambassadors.”
Unlike one-off press junkets or working short-term with star bloggers, the relationships between travel brands and destinations and natural ambassadors are therefore developed organically, for the long- haul.
Photo: Lola Akinmade Akerström Co-Founder, NordicTB.com