Marketing talks a lot about 7P's - Product, Place, Promotion, Price People, Process & Physical Evidence and while they are certainly helpful and can even camouflage flaws in your core product. Think about the so so food quality of busy restaurants in busy market squares.

The real marketing for tour operators for me is crafting unique and memorable experiences that not just satisfy but delight your customers and make it easy for them to create and share content, that you as a tour operator amplifiy by resharing this user generated content.  

Thus delivering experiences that won't get a review of 4 out of 5 review are probable not even worth the effort.

Great experiences are eagerly shared by customers with friends, family, and through their social channels, effectively turning them into brand ambassadors and "free" sales agents. Especially if there are also great visual tor share.

Its not only the experience that makes people love to share but also how much you show you care, do you genuinely try to give people the best possible experience, how do you deal with people when something goes wrong.

To attract customers with marketing, it's essential to identify and highlight the elements of your tours that resonate most with your travelers —be it the thrill of adventure, the depth of cultural immersion, or the relaxation and luxury of your offerings.

With the arrival of AI technology main stream itineraries will be mostly automated, the market as a travel professional lies in highly curated, special-interest itineraries that require in-depth knowledge and give exclusive access to experiences that unlock a higher form of expertise, beauty and understanding.

By focusing on these aspects, you can tailor your marketing content to showcase these experiences through vivid imagery, engaging narratives, and testimonials that capture the essence of the joy and satisfaction customers derive from their adventures.

Utilizing a mix of traditional and digital marketing strategies, such as social media campaigns, influencer partnerships, and user-generated content can amplify these stories to reach a broader audience.

Moreover, maintaining an interactive and responsive online presence allows for potential customers to visualize themselves in the experiences being shared, further enhancing the desire to book and partake in similar adventures. Personalizing communications and offers based on customer preferences and past behaviors can also significantly boost marketing efficacy, making each customer feel valued and understood.

Using review platforms like Google, TripAdvisor etc give extra confirmation that you are the best choice for your customers.

Use Smart Pricing Strategy

Another important element of your marketing strategy is pricing; pricing needs to be aligned with the quality of your tours and experiences and the customers your are targeting. When you start your business or you are in low season it can help using a lower price for certain products to attract more customers. Especially if you are able to make them happy they can be part of your marketing because they share positive reviews which help to sell other experiences with better margins. This works also very good when you start a new business. Attract new customers and make sure they are super happy so the refer others to you. You need to first tempt people to try you, because if no one knows you they can't share about you.

Ultimately, tour operator marketing should be an ongoing cycle of delivering exceptional experiences, capturing those moments, and sharing them in a way that not only retains current customers but also inspires new ones. Each element, from the initial booking process to post-trip follow-up, should be part of a cohesive strategy that emphasizes customer satisfaction and word-of-mouth promotion.