I received many positive feedbacks about my TOP 10 golf travel blogs‘ list that I published in August. So I thought to analyze another social media platform, the Instagram, and who are the most successful golf travel Instagrammers.
The travel industry has rightly recognized the potential of Instagram as a tool for promotion. There is nothing surprising in this as Instagram had 700+ million active users (46% = 25-44 age group; 15% = 50+ age group) in September 2017. In the very same month, it was the #7 most popular social media platform in the world.
The competitor Pinterest (“only” 200 million active users: 85% are women) was not in the TOP 10 most popular social media platforms’ list.
As the visual content is a crucial element of golf clubs’ and resorts’ marketing strategy, Instagram provides unique opportunities to present themselves.
What can golf travel Instagrammers do for a golf resort or club?
Just like in Facebook communication, many golf resorts and golf clubs think if they post eye-catching, lifestyle photos people will most likely to join their community and get engaged with their content.
On the contrary, if such contents are dominating your Facebook page or Instagram page, then you’ve got very good chances that you WILL NOT be able to get into conversations with your fans and prospects. Although this is the point in social media marketing.
There is no more B2B or B2C – just P2P / H2H
However, what golf travelers and regular golfers want to get is not brand messages, but insights and recommendations from people like them. Our task is to explore creative approaches to earn attention and build relationships. I know you will not like what I will tell you now, but influence and relationship building takes time!
To be able to achieve sustainable, high-quality revenue growth you have to earn the trust of customers. This is why it is important to invest in influencer marketing as well.
You have to invest time and valuable resources to build credibility and trust with influencers (e.g. golf travel blogger, golf travel Instagrammers etc.). There is NO SHORTCUT for getting there!!!!
On Wednesday I wrote regarding the promotion of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship that the organizers should change to “always-on” engagement from campaign-based communication.
The “always-on” engagement involves long-term collaboration. In case of golf travel instagramers (but also true for other types of influencers), if you help them to create the most attractive photos and videos then you are actually improving your influencer marketing program’s efficiency.
Such authentic content will gain much more attention and engagement, but face-to-face and word-of-mouth advocacy as well.
I believe that a well-designed influencer marketing program can help your golf resort and golf club to:
- Improve brand advocacy,
- Expand brand awareness,
- Reach new targeted audiences,
- Increase share of voice,
- Improve sales conversion.
When you look for a golf travel instagramer or even a golf travel blogger, don’t think for a moment that the most important criterion is the number of followers.
Yes, it is important to be able to reach more people, but even more important the engagement level with his/her followers and community. Check the number and length of conversations between the instagramer/blogger and his/her followers!
I would also consider the person as well and his/her personality and values + the community.
The composition of the golf travel instagramer’s or golf travel blogger’s community is crucial since you want to reach the most relevant audiences.
My TOP 7 golf travel instagramers
I must admit that it was not so simple to find the most useful and relevant golf travel instagramers. There are many golf tourists who take pictures (including selfies) during his golf holiday, but very few of them can be considered as golf travel instagramers.
When I composed this list my KPIs were:
- Size of community/followers (see: Reach)
- Engagement: the average number of likes and the number of comments
- The focus of his/her Instagram account.
- Content types: photo, video etc.
All of the selected seven golf travel Instagrammers are using photos and videos to share their stories with us. It was interesting to find that many of them are professional photographers.
They are my TOP 7 golf travel Instagrammers:
- Patrick Koenig (@pjkoenig)
- Channing Benjamin (@channingbenjaminphotography)
- Matt Ginella (@matt_ginella; Golf Channel’s Morning Drive)
- Ashley Mayo (@ashleykmayo; Golf Digest)
- Jacob Sjöman (@sjomanart)
- Shane Bacon (@shanebacon)
- Evan Schiller (@evan_schiller_photography)
- Christian Hafer (@hafe_life) – added in February 2019
- Erik Anders Lang (@erikanderslang) – added in February 2019
Golf travel Instagrammers and golf travel bloggers are the new breed of golf travel journalists. Next time you are organizing a FAM trip for your golf resort or golf club then don’t forget to invite golf travel Instagrammers and golf travel bloggers as well.
Update – 2 new golf travel instagramers: 2019/02/03
Since 20th October 2017 when I composed the list of TOP 7 golf travel instagramers there have been some major changes in Instagram.
The study of Later the #1 marketing platform for Instagram found that marketers’ TOP 3 marketing goals by being present on Instagram are:
- 79% – Increasing follower engagement & loyalty;
- 72% – Increasing brand awareness;
- 64% – Building a more engaged community.
The #1 KPI to measure performance in Instagram is engagement (81%) and the #2 is the number of followers.
This tells me that marketers understood that focusing solely on the number of followers will not bring sufficient results plus it is a vanity.
The usage of Instagram stories and original content grew significantly (see picture below) in 2018.
I am expecting in 2019 Instagram will continue to be a useful and effective communication channel for golf clubs and golf resorts.
In 2018 the amount of visual content consumption grew significantly and this will continue in 2019.
Venngage found that the share of the visual content of marketers was 56% in 2018 vs 45% in 2017.
I am really curious about what will bring IGTV for marketers and users This is Instagram’s new video platform dedicated exclusively to mobile users.
IGTV will help you to connect with your mobile audience through vertical video playback and authentic “in the moment” content.
Use IGTV to broadcast exclusive content!
Who are your favorite golf travel Instagrammers? Can you recommend any golf travel instagramers for future influencer marketing programs?