TRAVEL BRANDS TURN TO TWITTER TO ENGAGE WITH SOCIAL MEDIA-SAVVY MILLENIALS
Tweetups and Twitter Chats become Industry Staple for Hoteliers, Booking Sites, Destinations and Even Travel Insurance Companies to Connect with Consumers
Long the social network of choice for travelers seeking help when something goes wrong with flights, customer service or hotel quality, Twitter has now become the top social platform for travel brands looking to proactively grow audiences and engage with consumers.
A “Tweetup” or “Twitter Chat” is typically a scheduled online Q&A session. By searching for the chat’s hashtag, anyone with a Twitter account can see and participate in a discussion about a specific travel topic at a pre-determined time. This Twitter-based exchange has become one of the most predominant engagement strategies that travel marketers are using to foster positive connections between brands and their audiences.
One of the most popular travel-industry Twitter chats, #TravelSkills, with travel bloggers Johnny Jet and Chris McGinnis, was launched in 2013. It now attracts active participation from more than 27,000 passionate travelers and travel media every year with a potential reach of nearly five million every week. When the #TravelSkills chat debuted in April 2013 for hotel chain Best Western, it attracted a large number of participants and McGinnis and Jet knew they were on to something special. Since then, they have worked with a variety of travel companies to get the brand’s images and messages in front of their large audience of travel enthusiasts and influencers in a positive environment.
“Twitter has been an amazing tool for us to share our knowledge and also to get our sponsor’s message broadcasted in front of a large travel oriented audience,” said Johnny Jet.
“We’ve loved having the #TravelSkills chat as a platform to broadcast our tips and advice,” said Chris McGinnis, “but perhaps more importantly, the weekly chat has served as a classroom for us to learn from participants about all the places we’ve never been to.”
More and more travel brands – including booking sites, destinations, hoteliers and even travel insurance companies – are reaping the benefits of using Twitter chats to build community, enhance brand awareness and engage with opinion leaders in the travel industry.
Allianz Global Assistance launches #TravelHappy Twitter Chats in 2015
Leading travel insurance provider Allianz Global Assistance began utilizing Twitter chats in March 2015 utilizing the #TravelHappy hashtag on the @AllianzTravelUS Twitter page. The first chat featured a panel conversation with the “Travel Trifecta” – leading travel bloggers Johnny Jet, Gary Arndt and Lee Abbamonte. Since the first #TravelHappy chat, Allianz Global Assistance’s Twitter following has grown nearly 30 percent. Featured conversation topics have ranged from travel hacks and tips; family, business and professional trips; study abroad topics and dream vacations. The company’s most successful chat of the year generated 15 million hashtag impressions, with about 60 million cumulative hashtag impressions for 2015. The company uses Twitter chats to share experiences, educate and inform chat participants, engage its followers and obtain new followers.
“We wanted to engage with travelers in a fun and useful way, on a platform that has been underutilized by insurance companies,” said Sarah Fouts, Senior Marketing Specialist, Allianz Global Assistance USA. “We are continuing the successful #TravelHappy chats with the Travel Trifecta in 2016 to bring even more travel tips and advice to consumers.”
Upcoming chat topics include: culinary travel, travel apps and tech, road trips and long weekends. To learn more or participate, follow @AllianzTravelUS on Twitter.
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Allianz Global Assistance USA
Allianz Global Assistance USA (AGA Service Company) is a leading consumer specialty insurance and assistance company. We insure 21 million customers annually and are best known for our Allianz Travel Insurance plans. In addition to travel insurance, Allianz Global Assistance USA offers tuition insurance, event ticket protection, registration protection for endurance events and unique travel assistance services such as international medical assistance and concierge services. The company also serves as an outsource provider for in-bound call center services and claims administration for health insurers, property and casualty insurers, and credit card companies.
Terms, conditions, reductions, and exclusions apply to all plans. All plans not available in all states. For a complete description of the coverage and benefit limits offered under your plan, carefully review your letter of confirmation and certificate of insurance/policy. Insurance coverage is underwritten by BCS Insurance Company (OH, Administrative Office: Oakbrook Terrace, IL), rated “A-“(Excellent) by A.M. Best Co., under BCS Form No. 52.201 series or 52.401 series, or Jefferson Insurance Company (NY, Administrative Office: Richmond, VA), rated “A+” (Superior) by A.M. Best Co., under Jefferson Form No. 101-C series or 101-P series, depending on the insured's state. Allianz Global Assistance and Allianz Travel Insurance are brands of AGA Service Company. AGA Service Company is the licensed producer and administrator of this plan and an affiliate of Jefferson Insurance Company. The insured shall not receive any special benefit or advantage because of the affiliation between AGA Service Company and Jefferson Insurance Company. “Twitter” and “tweet” are registered trademarks of Twitter, Inc. “Allianz Travel Insurance” and “Allianz Global Assistance” are marks of AGA Service Company. Marks not owned by AGA Service Company are used without permission. Twitter, Inc. does not sponsor or endorse AGA Service Company or this advertisement.
Media Contact: Daniel Durazo