How do we persuade people to travel?
Why do we travel? We want to explore the path less taken, to discover ourselves, to say goodbye to the mundane and reconnect with the ones we love. It’s all about embracing those curl-up with a good book and lay out on the beach, welcoming those grab-life-by-the-horns moments, relaxing like every day is the weekend, and making new memories. The dreamer and the adventure-seeker, the weekenders and the planners—they all come together for one core reason: to feel something.
Our clients are proud of their destinations and rely on our content’s ability to create an emotional connection with readers. Amplified Storytelling uses story arcs and narrative transportation to draw readers in and get them imagining themselves in the characters’ shoes. Sometimes a story sticks out in our mind as extra awesome and strikes the perfect chord with the destination—that’s what happened with “The Crown Jewel of Columbia County.”
“I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Ichetucknee Springs story! I’ve had so many people say, ‘It’s like I’m there in the story with them!’” Paula Vann, Columbia County TDC
How do we take an idea and turn it into a successful Amplified Storytelling campaign?
It all starts with research and communication. The Madden and Columbia County teams discussed story concepts that would achieve their goals. Every story concept is based on a BrightEdge analysis of keywords—“Ichetucknee Springs” proved to be a fun topic that would ensure the content had high SEO value based on search demand. Columbia County Tourism Development Council’s main goal was to have authentic content, meaning people reading the story and then traveling to the destination would feel the continuity between content and personal experiences. This was accomplished by hiring a writer native to Florida to go to the destination and include all the details of his excursion. Imagery was an important element while creating the story—it’s easier to imagine yourself in a place when you can see the wildlife enjoying the warm sun, the calm turquoise water, and many green shades of the foliage.
Once the story and its visually enticing Presentation Layer were created and perfected, our teams went to work amplifying. We distributed the content through ads on Facebook and other lifestyle, news, and social media sites. Advanced targeting parameters and continuous optimization helped people discover the story. We’re not talking random clicks to site with readers moving on quickly—our stories typically engage readers so they more than double the time spent on page when compared to the site average, and this was no exception. Columbia County TDC saw over 93% new visitors to their site, meaning over 6,900 new people connected with the destination’s story. Readers spent an average of five minutes on the page. When was the last time you spent that much time on a single page of a website? The emotional connection created between the reader and the story increases the intent to travel, and that’s why inspirational Amplified Storytelling is unique among other types of content.