Photos, blog posts and other content shared by
social media influencers can be an effective way for brands to communicate with
consumers – particularly since surveys have found that between one-third to
half of adults use software to block traditional online advertising, while
the majority of consumers put trust in personalized recommendations.
Traackr, an influencer marketing
platform, has analyzed social media and blog posts produced during 2017 by the
top 250 English-speaking travel influencers – based on reach, relevance and
resonance of their content related to travel - who have an audience of 25
million people collectively.
In the category of travel
packages, which includes brands such as Expedia, Priceline, Travelocity, Kayak
and TripAdvisor, Travelocity captured the majority – 46% - of the more than
15,000 mentions analyzed. A distant second was TripAdvisor at 18%.
But Expedia wins for engagement
(38%), meaning posts about its brand had the most actions such as retweets,
comments, likes and shares. TripAdvisor came in second for engagement with 33%.
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Kayak received mentions from the
highest amount of the 250 influencers – 163 mentioned the brand in some way - while Travelocity managed to capture the highest number of mentions from far fewer
influencers, just 65.
This might be a sign that “instead
of going for breadth, they tend to have a highly focused strategy,” says Kirk
Crenshaw, CMO of Traackr.
But Crenshaw says there is value
in developing relationships with a wide range of influencers.
“Where we see companies be more successful is when
they take a look at a breadth of influencers who drive engagement, who drive visibility
and it’s not concentrated in five to 10 people. The big thing for us is the influencer
landscape is constantly changing and adjusting, and we tend to see having a
wider group of engaged and activated influencers tends to perform better.”
In the category of flights, Traackr looked at social posts
about Skyscanner, Seatguru, CheapOair, Cheapflights and Momondo.
CheapOair garnered more than half of the more than 2,800 mentions, but Skyscanner was the clear leader in engagement at 92%.
Similar to the Travelocity story, CheapOair won the numbers game
with a relatively small amount of influencers - just 47 of the 250 mentioned it
during 2017. Skyscanner lead the group with 103 activated influencers.
Airbnb is the clear leader in influencer marketing in this
category that also includes Booking.com, Hoteltonight, HomeAway, Hotels.com, Trivago
The home-share site captured 76% of all mentions and 88% of
engagements. It also leads the group for the number of influencers that talked
about it online – 196.
also segmented its analysis for the two largest holding groups – Booking Holdings
and Expedia Group – comparing the brands within each one.
Expedia Group, excluding Expedia itself, Travelocity is the brand getting the
most traction from influencers, with 83% of the mentions and 95% of all
Kayak is the
top performer within the Booking Holdings group, with 48% of mentions and 59%
of engagements. Booking.com came in second for mentions, followed closely by
Agoda, but Agoda was second for audience engagement.
of the categories, a clear pattern emerged: The majority of mentions take place on Twitter, but the platform that
drives the most engagement is Instagram.
“I find it interesting that so much effort is spent
in Twitter in terms of driving volume of content, but the network that is driving
the engagement is this visual environment that Instagram has created,” Crenshaw
“It’s been something we’ve been finding fairly
consistently over the past year. So that beckons these companies to potentially
change their strategy and the target influencers they are working with and the
networks they are focused on as well.”