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December 15, 2020

The travel industry entered 2020 with high hopes. Travel was booming and spending was forecast to increase by 4%, according to the U.S. Travel Forecast.

But COVID-19 changed everything. Seemingly overnight, travel stopped. However, some areas of leisure travel began to see increases over the past few months while others prepared for the day when travelers return. What is the best way to engage those travelers? To reassure them that it’s safe and responsible to take a needed break? What is the best way to provide an authentic, trustworthy message in a time of uncertainty?

The team here at The Abbi Agency sought to find out, embarking on an in-depth qualitative study of the destination marketing and influencer industries to answer a question that’s been on everyone’s mind: where do we go from here?

Introducing Travel Influencers and Destination Marketing: A 2021 Outlook

Our investigation brought us into candid conversation with a hand-selected group of 20 travel influencers who have previously been part of our press and influencer trips.

Alongside them, we interviewed some of the best minds in the travel business, including representatives from destinations throughout the nation and Carl Ribaudo of SMG Consulting (a strategic consulting firm which has guided destinations throughout the country to greater profit, visitor engagement and stronger management strategies).

We intentionally designed our outreach to bring perspectives from a variety of perspectives to the table. In particular, we wanted to make sure a range of psychographic, geographic, gender and cultural perspectives were included — because we know that each of these things influence not only how we understand culture (perhaps the key offering of any region), but also how we ultimately tell stories about it.

The result of these conversations is a successor to our annual Travel Influencer Studywhich we knew would look a little bit different this year. 

In Travel Influencers and Destination Marketing: A 2021 Outlook, we embark on an in-depth exploration of influencer attitudes, destination marketing projections and tactical evolutions to guide us past this unusual moment in our shared history. Beyond that, we take a hard look at the fundamental purpose of destination marketing, as well as how and why our strategic/tactical approaches should be aligned with that purpose.

Whether you’re a destination marketer building out your 2021 plan, an influencer looking to position yourself to develop travel content or an agency professional in search of new consulting approaches, our complimentary new eBook has something for you.

Access our eBook now to gain free insights into:

  • The role influencers play in travel recovery
  • Tactics that are working for destinations
  • Where industry experts see things heading in 2021

The Abbi Agency works with a number of resorts, destinations and travel professionals. We want to do our part to help with the travel industry’s recovery, and hope this free PDF ebook provides useful insights and advice.

Get it now, and thank us later! 

Tune into our newest podcast episode here for some super secret insights, tips and commentary on the state of Destination Marketing in 2021 from our very own Abbi Whitaker.