When you started your tourism business and created your name, logo and URL, did you say to yourself,

“Yeah, now I have a brand!”

Well, you have one, but it’s only part of a brand, not a whole brand.

Sorry to break the news to you, but your branding work isn’t done there is more to it than that. So, we want to spend some time and  share some tips on branding so you aren’t understood by your prospective guests.

Branding is so much more than a name, logo and a URL.

Your brand needs to do something BIG for people, it needs to do something human.


A brand needs to make your guests FEEL something


it’s like a reaction, and of course you want a good and a positive reaction when a guest is exposed to your brand.

So, it makes sense why a logo, name or URL isn’t only what branding is because there is more to it than that than a visual or written thing.

If you can’t stir up some emotion with your brand, it makes it difficult to persuade your guest to want to learn more.


Tips on branding: You can make your guests FEEL something by working on 2 important things


1. Your brand needs to deliver on a PROMISE


Well, it means that there is something that your brand delivers to your guests every time they are exposed to it because you do it consistently, and it’s what your brand starts to be known for.


Apple computers are the best example of this.


Apple’s brand promise is: “Think Different.” It’s a signal to their consumers to see the world differently, and Apple inspires its customers to do the same through their products. “Think Different” was not just an ad campaign but it is also everything they do in their business. They created life-changing technology like the iPod, iPhone, and Mac computers, including the sleek and unmistakable design and white color they use in everything they do. Their ad campaigns look and feel different than anything out there (before they were copied). They are unquestionably consistent in how they articulate “Think Different” across their entire business.


Marriott Hotels Brand Promise  

picture of lobby of marriott hotels

In the travel business, Marriott Hotel’s brand promise is: “Quiet luxury. Crafted experiences. Intuitive service.” Their focus is all about providing a consistent experience. They strive to anticipate the needs of their guests, to know what they want and deliver it. They are about affordable accommodations with great service. No matter whether you stay at a Marriott in Canada, in Europe, or in Peru, they strive to deliver the same consistent service every time. Marriott is one of the most successful hotel chains in the world, so it’s no wonder why service would be their brand promise.


When developing your brand promise for your business, consider these two things: 


  •  A brand promise needs to be meaningful for your guest. If your guest doesn’t care about it, why bother. You have to ensure that your staff understands it, too. For example, if your brand promise is the friendliest walking tours in Venice, then everyone in your company must behave that way. As an operator, you need to show them the kind of behavior that demonstrates this promise – on the phone with guests, how you work with suppliers, and it should impact every role whether you are a guide or concierge, or an accountant in the office
  • A brand promise needs to be measurable. For example, what does “friendly” mean? How could you measure that? It would require articulating the voice, style, and behavior that is consistent with being friendly. (See point 2 below.) For instance, if you create a guest survey about their experience you should ask whether you delivered on  “friendly” with everyone and every way your guests interacted with your business.


2. Your brand has a personality – just like a human.

picture of people - and referring to brand identity

 What does my brand has a personality mean?

It means your brand doesn’t just look a certain way, but it talks and acts a certain way, too. And it does this consistently.


There are 3 areas of your brand personality to think about: 


1. It has a style (how it looks) 

Your style is the colors, the design and its the words you use to describe your look. Of course, you need your style to fit with your brand logo and colors all the time too.

For example, you are getting your website designed or you are creating some marketing materials. Would you describe your brand as traditional or modern, simple or ornate? What colors will you use from your brand logo? Maybe there is a pattern in your design that you follow.  Your style has to always be reflected in your visuals.

2. Your brand has a voice – what does it say to guests and how does it say it?

For example, you are creating copy for your social media posts. What does your brand talk about?  Do you talk about topics related to responsible travel or luxury travel?  Also, you have a way you say things too. Is your brand funny or serious? Loud or quiet? Casual or professional?

3. Your brand behaves a certain way. What does it do?

These are the activities, the events, and the causes your brand supports.

For example, you are picking new partners for your tours or hotel business. Are your activities (tours) more adventurous or low key? or are they cutting edge or conservative?  Do your partnerships or brands you sponsor with other businesses fit your behavior?


When all of these 3 brand areas are consistent in all your marketing endeavors, then it’s easier for your guests to ‘Get You’ and understand you, which is one step in persuading them to book with you.

If these tips on branding have helped you with your marketing, we’d like to know! Please comment and give us feedback.

To watch a video about this problem, we’ve created a video that explains it in detail here:  What is branding? It’s not this  

Need some more branding tips or help with your branding? Find out how we can help you.


image of a brand identity - tips on branding

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