How to Become a Top Travel Influencer | MODERNSPEAK

Kristyn Snell (She/Her)

April 21, 2024

How to Become a Top Travel Influencer

The influencer marketing industry is becoming quite competitive, with more people striving to grow followers and get noticed by brands they love. Whether you’re a nano or micro influencer, there’s good news: getting hired doesn’t mean you need hundreds of thousands of followers.

In fact, many brands prefer working with micro influencers over macro influencers to market products and services. This means there's a fantastic opportunity to develop a travel influencer portfolio and grow your personal brand. 

At this stage, you’ve likely already worked with clients—but how do you take your career to the next level? It’s all about developing an effective strategy, and in this post, we’ll give you some rock-solid influencer marketing tips to help you build relationships and land the clients of your dreams.

What Brands Look for in Influencers

To catch the eye of a travel brand, you need to think like one. Brands are on the lookout for social media influencers and content creators who not only align with their values and aesthetic but also boast an engaged following

Engagement rate, which includes likes, comments, and shares per post, often trumps sheer follower count because it shows that people aren’t just watching, they’re interacting. 

Here are a few key qualities brands look for:

Micro Influencers

We weren’t kidding when we said most brands prefer using micro influencers over macro influencers. The number sits at about 77%. What makes them so attractive? Typically, nano and micro influencers:

  • Can be easier to communicate with
  • Suit smaller budgets 
  • Have higher engagement rates
  • Reach the target audience more effectively
  • Partner with brands they actually love

Influencer Authenticity & Relevance

Make sure you do an influencer authenticity check and consider if the client you are pitching to is truly a match for your community. Your audience won’t fall for marketing schemes that give them even the slightest hint that your main goal is to achieve business objectives rather than genuinely resonate and gain their trust. 

Trust can be time-consuming, but when done right, it results in the ultimate achievement—a genuine advocate your consumer community can depend on. 

A note on relevance: When a brand seamlessly meshes with your lifestyle as an influencer, you have a higher chance of making an authentic connection with what you’re promoting. 

When your audience sees this relationship, they’ll know that you’ve worked together to create a lasting, meaningful connection to bind the brand and community together, rather than you just being hired to promote a product or service.

Sometimes the best brand to work with is one that has products or services you already use or aspire to use in the future.

Influencer Engagement Rate & Audience Demographics

Brands looking for influencers don’t always focus on the number of followers they have. Here’s why: followers can always be bought, and brands know this. Instead, many focus on the influencer’s audience demographics and engagement rate. 

What percentage of your fans comment on, like, or share your posts? What’s your comment quality like—do they contribute to the discussion? Quality engagement is worth much more than a significant amount of silent followers

In addition, brands often look for influencers that align with their products or services. For example, hotels that want to showcase their pet-friendly amenities might seek out influencers with dogs.

Influencer Content Creation Skills

Experienced influencers use their creative marketing skills, and the power of storytelling to produce high-quality messaging and visuals for specific audiences. 

The most successful influencer content creators have a well-balanced knowledge of crucial digital marketing principles, allowing them to create images, videos, copy, ads, and messaging that speak to the right audience at the right time, therefore increasing engagement rates.

If your skills in these areas need strengthening, consider taking a course or experimenting with new mediums. Providing high-quality assets also increases the places and opportunities for the content to be used by the brand or destination. As the use and licensing increases, the budget likely will as well. 

Travel Blogging & Multi-Channel Campaigns

Modern PR strategies look beyond social media influence. One unique media relations strategy is using the power of travel blogging, and PR executives are looking to create relationships with bloggers to help their clients effectively communicate with their target audience

Since 80% of travel planning is completed on the internet, it makes a lot of sense for travel companies to partner with bloggers whose audience is looking for travel tips and recommendations. 

A note on using multi-channel marketing campaigns to improve reach: Influencers that focus on Instagram but also have a blog are beneficial for longer-term conversions for travel clients. 

Already have a social media following? Then it’s a great time to start a blog, and perhaps even a newsletter. This will provide more avenues to consistently reach travelers and give you an edge over other travel influencers. Content that lives on these channels can be very impactful as “evergreen” content, and help destinations improve their organic SEO.

Influencer Brand Alignment & Values

Influencers that use consistent colors, image types, copy, and hashtags signal they have carefully thought out how to present themselves online and stand out in an oversaturated crowd. This means they’ll know how to align with a brand in a way that resonates with their audiences—as well as their values and promotional goals. 

If your niche is mountains and outdoor activities, it is totally appropriate to stay in that lane and really hone in on this angle. You might not end up working with an urban hotelier, but you are indeed in a great position to collaborate with outdoor brands and/or destinations that are hoping to connect with future travelers interested in soft adventure and outdoor exploration.

Influencer Track Record & Past Collaborations

Brands looking for content creators want a sense of an influencer’s niche before committing to a contract. For example, a brand looking to hire a content creator to represent its apparel brand will look for influencers with a proven track record of collaborating with other apparel or fashion brands. 

‍When an influencer has recognition for the value and expertise they’ve brought to other companies, they’re worth a second look. Brands will often assess the number of sponsored to unsponsored posts to understand the influencer’s connection with their community.

More on community connection: From our experience, working with creators who continue to create their own unique content regularly helps stabilize engagement rates and connection with their community. The power of influencer marketing is to reach an engaged audience—not just a large audience.

Creating a PR Kit

As an influencer, you’re selling a personal brand. But you’re also selling your results as that brand. This means showcasing what you do, how well you do it, and what others think about it is important. 

What Is a PR Kit for Influencers?

A PR (public relations) kit for influencers, also called a press kit or media kit, is a bundle of materials that includes information about your personal brand, audience, and services. It’s both a resume and a portfolio and along with your social media accounts and website, will showcase your brand to potential collaborators such as brands or agencies. 

It’s what’ll help you secure partnerships and sponsorships and typically includes:

  • Biography: A brief overview of yourself, including your background, achievements, and area of expertise.
  • Audience Demographics: Detailed information about your audience, including age range, gender distribution, geographic location, and interests. This will help brands determine if your audience aligns with their target market.
  • Engagement Metrics: Statistics that show your engagement rates, including average likes, comments, shares, and views per post.
  • Influencer Marketing Platforms & Reach: A list of all the platforms you are active on, along with the number of followers on each.
  • Previous Collaborations: Examples of past partnerships with brands, including the type of content created and the results of those campaigns.
  • Testimonials & Reviews: Positive feedback from previous collaborators or clients.
  • Media Coverage: Any press or media features you have been part of.
  • Contact Information: How to contact you or your management team.
  • Rate Card: Information on pricing for different content you offer.

When creating your PR kit, aesthetic is key. Canva has tons of templates available if you’re looking for a free and easy way to make the right impression.

This kit will also come in handy when looking for an influencer marketing agency to represent you.

Elevate Your Influence

Whether you’ve just reached your first 3k followers or have already passed 10k, you’re doing something right. Now it’s time to harness the potential of your following and grow your influencer portfolio.

 

With a powerful PR kit, an authentic approach, and the right influencer marketing strategy, landing your dream clients is possible. And if you want a helping hand along the way, get in touch with MODERNSPEAK to find out what’s possible for your career. 

We manage a team of powerhouse influencers and content creators and are always looking to expand! Email hello@modernspeak.co or call 1(587)414-7825 to get started.

FAQ

What Instagram niche makes the most money?

As an established influencer, you might have already found your niche, or you might be dabbling in a few high-earning industries. At MODERNSPEAK, we work within the Travel Influencer niche—and it just so happens to be one of the most lucrative

What are the four types of influencers?

There are four main types of influencers:

  • Nano influencers: 1-10k followers
  • Micro influencers: 10-100k followers
  • Macro influencers: 100k-1M followers
  • Mega influencers: 1M+ followers

How much do influencers make?

How much an influencer makes depends on the type of sponsored post, contract agreement, work involved in the project, number of followers, experience, and more. It takes skill to properly negotiate rates, which is one of the reasons hiring an influencer marketing agency is so useful.

Ready to connect?

Work With Us

Frame corner