11+ Helpful Walking Tour Marketing Strategies and Ideas

11+ Helpful Walking Tour Marketing Strategies and Ideas

Walking tours are a great way for travelers to explore a new city. They’re also one of the best travel businesses to start if you’re passionate about local history, culture, and travel in general.

After starting your own walking tour business, you might be wondering what to do next. Generating walking tour bookings is the next logical step, but how do you make that happen?

With the right walking tour marketing strategy in place you can start generating bookings within 90 days. It’s likely to happen even sooner depending on your work ethic and local market.

Walking Tour Marketing Strategies

Today, let’s take a look at some of the best walking tour marketing ideas. You can use these for growing your own walking tour business, whether you’ve decided to start a walking tour business or you already have one that’s well-established.

With these strategies and ideas you’ll be able to gain traction online, generate more bookings, and increase your revenue. There are a number of other benefits to a properly implemented walking tour business strategy as well. Let’s jump right into it!

#1 – Set Up A Website

Setting up your walking tour website should be your first step, if you haven’t done so already. A website is how people are going to find you online. It’s also how you’re going to start booking walking tours.

Without a website you might as well be invisible, especially in 2020. The majority of travelers are using their smartphones and heading online to learn more about local excursions and tourist attractions. It’s important that you have a website people can visit to learn more about your walking tours and book one for themselves.

Setting up a website is easy. Platforms like Squarespace mean you don’t need any design or development experience to build your site. Alternatively, WordPress is user-friendly and there are plenty of one-click-install walking tour WordPress themes available.

From the start, a website should be your priority. Without one, most walking tour marketing ideas and strategies simply won’t be effective.

#2 – Participate on Social Media

social media

Social media is an easy way to build your food tour brand and generate more bookings. People spend a lot of time on social media, especially younger travelers. This makes the different platforms a great place to interact with potential walking tour clients.

From the start it’s a good idea to get setup on Facebook and Instagram. YouTube is also a great platform if you have the time, skill, and budget to make videos.

With Instagram you can share photos and short videos. This content can be about your walking tours. It can also be about your city, such as local tourist attractions and cool places to visit.

People planning on traveling to the area will be browsing this type of content while putting together their itinerary. If it’s your photos and videos that keep showing up, and they’re interested in a walking tour, who do you think they’re going to book with?

Facebook is a great platform for sharing interesting stories. It’s also ideal for showing people what they can expect on one of your walking tours. An active Facebook page makes it easy for future travelers to learn more about your tours and interact with you personally.

Social media is incredibly important in 2020. Take the time to get started on the different social platforms. This will help with branding, generating bookings, and increasing revenue for your walking tour business.

#3 – Share Content Regularly

Content, in the form of social media posts or blog posts, acts as doorways to your website. These doorways encourage people to check out our website. This can lead to more bookings and increased brand awareness.

Too often walking tour companies setup the website, start their social media accounts, and forget about everything. Don’t be a company that does is! You’re missing out on a lot of opportunities this way.

Instead, take the time to regularly share engaging and helpful content. There are a few ways you can do this.

With your website, regularly upload blog posts. These can be about your local area such as things to do, places to visit, where to stay, and other helpful travel information. One or two blog posts per month is enough to please the search engines and start generating walking tour leads.

When it comes to social media, it’s a good idea to be posting weekly. It’s even better if you can be posting everyday, although this can be difficult depending on your schedule. Posting photos and videos can increase engagement and grow your brand.

In the long run, sharing content regularly is a great way to grow your walking tour business. This strategy can help you generate leads, increase revenue, and build a walking tour business brand.

#4 – Get Customers to Leave Reviews

Customer reviews are one of the foundations of local SEO. Reviews make it more likely for individuals to book a walking tour. This is especially true with positive reviews from past customers.

Google themselves consider customer reviews as one of their local search engine ranking factors. Having more positive reviews will result in better search engine rankings, especially for local searches. In such a competitive market as the travel industry, those with the best reviews – wins.

Along with Google, other platforms also allow customers to leave reviews. These include platforms like Facebook and TripAdvisor. Being able to attain great reviews, by providing a quality service, can help grow your walking tour business.

For example, many travelers read reviews to determine the travel activities they’ll be participating in. Having a number of positive reviews can increase both your local search rankings and number of bookings you’re generating.

It’s important to start asking your clients and customers to leave reviews, if you’re not already. This can be done in person, at the end of a walking tour, or through an email after the tour has finished.

#5 – Partner With Local Businesses

Depending on the type of walking tour you run, it can be a good idea to partner with local businesses. These are places you can stop for a quick break, or even visit, during your tour.

Partnering with these local businesses can bring them their own business. Not only are you helping your local economy, they’ll also promote your walking tours in reciprocity.

Consider approaching local businesses and letting them know about your walking tours. They may be able to provide you with discounts on drinks, food, or even other local travel activities. It’s possible that you might even find a sponsor for your tour company.

#6 – Reach Out to Influencers

girls pointing at a screen

When you’re just starting out, it can be difficult to get people to start booking your walking tours. As a new company, working with travel influencers is a great way to promote your business.

These are individuals in the travel niche with a large, relevant following. Bloggers, Youtuber’s, and Instagramer’s are all people to consider working with.

Start by reaching out to some of the most influential online individuals in your walking tour niche. Local travel bloggers are a great place to start. Offer them a free walking tour in exchange for an honest review.

Have them leave their review on their own media platforms as well as on Google, Facebook, and TripAdvisor. This can help to kick-start your business and to make it easier for you to generate new bookings.

Depending on the popularity of the influence you’re working with, it might be necessary to pay them for their services. This could be worth it if you’re in a highly competitive local tours market.

Along with positive reviews online, your website will also get a backlink. These are links to your website from other websites and digital properties.

Backlinks will increase your website’s importance in search engines. They can be used for making direct bookings from the people your influencer is reaching.

#7 – Work With Local Hotels

This walking tour marketing strategy has to do with partnering with local businesses. However, you can take it one step further by partnering with local hotels.

Many hotels, big or small, typically make recommendations to their visitors in regards to local attractions and things to do. Some hotels even have stands or a board where they post local tourist activities.

Speak to the manager or marketing directors at hotels in your area. Explain the basics of your walking tour to them.

Ask if they’ll consider recommending your tour to their guests or even include a recommendation in their hotel blogging strategy. If they have a board or pamphlet area, ask if you can have your information included.

#8 – Start a YouTube Channel

Video content is becoming more popular every year. People keep turning to YouTube to learn more about the places they’re visiting.

Consider starting a YouTube channel for your walking tour business. Keep in mind that this is a time-intensive activity and requires that you the right gear, recording ability, and editing software.

It’s easy to start out small with YouTube. Start by posting vlogs or short videos about the interesting places you visit.

People researching their trips on YouTube could stumble onto your walking tour videos. If they’re interested in a walking tour, this would make them likely to book.

Right now, as of 2020, I believe this to be an underrated walking tour marketing strategy. When done right, YouTube videos can be a great way to generate bookings and increase your revenue.

#9 – Try Promotional Activities

Promotional activities are a great way to engage your audience and generate more bookings. These are activities that include contests and giveaways.

Contests are effective at building awareness and generating discussion around your walking tour company. For example, you could start a contest on Instagram where followers share their favourite local photos. The best photo could win a free walking tour.

Giveaways can also be used for increasing awareness and generating bookings. They’re great at showing your audience that you actually care about them. For example, you could give away a free walking tour choose a random commenter or someone tagged on one of your social media photos.

#10 – Optimize Your Walking Tour Website For Mobile Searches

Today, the majority of online searches are done through a smartphone or mobile device. Search engines like to display websites that are mobile friendly and responsive. With a mobile-friendly walking tour website, you’re more likely to gain a higher ranking in the search engine results.

Another thing to consider is that it’s easier for people to use and navigate a website if it’s mobile-friendly. If it’s hard to navigate, an individual is likely to exit the website and visit another one.

It should be easy for people to navigate your walking tour website using a smartphone or mobile device. Start by checking if your website is mobile-friendly using this tool here. If it’s not, you’ll want to consider updating immediately.

#11 – Make It Easy To Book a Tour

When someone online is visiting your website, it should be easy for them to book a tour. There should be a booking option on the homepage with a short process for making a booking.

You can also have a dedicated booking page. This page could include more information about the specific tour, such as what’s included and the price.

Making it difficult to book could deter people from making a booking at all. Instead, they’ll exit your website and likely visit one of your competitors.

To make it easy to book, use large buttons and bright colours. It should be obvious how an individual can make a booking. Also, consider including a booking button in the sidebar.

Making it easy to book can increase the number of bookings you’re able to generate. This results in increased revenue for your walking tour business.

#12 – Sign Up For Online Tour Booking Sites

While these online tour booking sites take a commission, they open you up to an enormous audience.

Some of the best booking platforms will have millions of visitors every month. Even with an amazing digital marketing strategy, it’s unlikely you’ll never reach an audience of this size without these platforms.

While they do take a commission, the volume of bookings will more than make up for it.

Just like with their website, it’s possible to optimize your tour listings on these platforms to get your listings in front of the most people. Once you start getting reviews, the algorithm on these platforms will begin to push your tours to the top.

Take the time to sign up and register on the various online tour booking sites. You’re leaving a lot of money and potential bookings on the table by avoiding these platforms.

Need Help With Your Walking Tour Marketing Strategy?

Here at Wizard of Tourism, we work with walking tour businesses and other tour companies to help them grow through effective digital marketing strategies. Whether you’re just starting out, or you’re looking to grow an established walking tour business, we’re here to help.

Using both local SEO and standard SEO strategies, our marketing strategists can help your business generate more bookings, increase revenue, and gain better rankings on search engines. All of these different strategies help to grow your business and dominate your local tourist market.

If you’re looking for help growing your walking tour business, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’ll be in touch either through phone or email, at a time that’s convenient for you.

Hey! I'm Alexander - the founder of Wizard of Tourism!

About the author

Alexander has been working with business in the travel and tourism industries since 2012. With over a decade of experience, Alexander and Wizard of Tourism strive to help those in the travel industry grow their business online.