New marketing mindset
Voyage Travel Marketing is a Devon-based company’s planning to bring a little US marketing mindset to the county’s tourism industry
It started with a couple of hotels in Florida. Now, Voyage Travel Marketing works with billion-dollar companies internationally, delivering high-performing social media campaigns, PR and e-commerce. Not bad for a little office tucked away in Sidmouth.
Owners Jessica Mcdonald, who is from Florida, and Devonborn husband Andrew May are now turning their attention to Devon businesses, helping them reach their full potential by bringing a touch of US marketing mindset to their strategies.
“We love Devon, so when it came to setting up our own business, there’s nowhere else we’d rather do it,” explains Jessica, who is the company’s managing director. “And it’s because we love the area that we want to help not only hotels, but other businesses really thrive in this digital-forward world. There’s so much untapped potential here.”
Voyage works with hotel owners as well as their managers and PRS; some are billion-dollar investment firms, while others are small, independent hotels. It comes as no surprise then that hotel owners are focused on profits. Strategies naturally drive this heavily, as well as ensuring campaigns and content are aspirational and creative to entice visitors.
“We are bringing the same model to businesses in Devon, working with the hotel managers and PRS, as well as the owners,” says Jessica. “I’ve previously worked with Visit Bristol, where I implemented these strategies and created several successful campaigns which helped the city bring in visitors from across the globe, not just down the road.”
More recently Voyage Travel Marketing has assisted Visit Sidmouth in utilising social media advertising to effectively target customers interested in visiting the seaside resort.
“The key is knowing your customers inside out – who they are, what they like – and targeting those interests in your digital advertising. You can advertise to a whole area, like Devon, but not everyone in Devon is going to be interested. So, if you’re a family attraction, you target families who like things that you offer, like trains or animals.”
It’s not just a Devon thing either, says Jessica. “A lot of UK businesses aren’t reaching their full potential. The US is more forward-thinking when it comes to digital marketing; it’s a very commerce-minded nation. That’s why what we bring to the table is so unique – we have that US approach with local Devon knowledge.”
Does she have any advice for businesses looking to do more? “There are a ton of industry blogs out there and little hubs of information. We share lots on our Facebook page, but others to check out are Sprout Social’s blog as well as Facebook and Instagram’s own. Facebook even offers advertising training for free to utilize their systems effectively to promote your business.” voyagetravelmarketing. com; facebook.com/ voyagetravelmarketing