How to Optimize Facebook Ads for Tour Operators


Remember when you could share a great post to your business's Facebook page without spending a dime, and make some meaningful connections with your audience? Even take a booking for a tour? Unfortunately, those days are gone.

This is due to the declining organic reach: in other words, the rate of people you can reach on Facebook for free. As Facebook has been increasingly monetizing its network, organic reach has significantly diminished.

Facebook ads are ads targeted to users based on their location, demographic, and profile information.

Now is the perfect time to make use of some of Facebook's lesser-known ad features that much of the tourism industry has overlooked. You can now improve your campaigns across various objectives – most importantly getting that tour booked!

Start with a Facebook Like campaign
If your business page on Facebook has fewer than 1000 followers, launch a like campaign before running any promotions.

Tour operators should create a 'Page Likes' ad campaign targeting people who are in the destination they operate in and have similar interests to their business. Your ad should feature your company with a brief description and an engaging photo/video of your tours.

As an extra tip, don't forget to exclude people who already like your page from the campaign for optimal budget spending.

Setup the right objectives for your campaigns
If you're running a Facebook Like campaign and select the 'Messages' objective, Facebook will optimize your campaigns to reach people who are most likely to message you instead of just liking your page. Make sure the Facebook Pixel is installed correctly on your website - this way, Facebook can optimize your campaigns in accordance with your goals better.

Create remarketing campaigns
Remarketing campaigns are great to boost your results since people who view your ads will already be familiar with your brand. A typical Facebook Ad Funnel is made up of four parts. 

- The first one, a Brand Awareness ad, should be created to drive website traffic and raise brand recognition. Use the "Learn More" CTA for this ad. 

- The second stage involves offering something of value (e.g., a destination guide) in exchange for more information, specifically an email address. Thus, you should use the "Download" CTA for this one. 

- The following one is a Trust ad and its goal is to establish trust in your brand by highlighting why you're number one in your tour segment in the destination; use a "Learn More" CTA here too. 

- The last step should be a Sale ad which should showcase your tour with an attractive visual and brief description (but no mention of price). You could use "Book Now" or "Send Message" as the CTA this time. 

People who go through all these steps are much closer to booking than those who only saw an isolated advertisement.

A/B test your ads

A/B testing on Facebook Ads is a great feature that lets you compare different iterations of the same ad to figure out which one works the best. You can switch up anything - graphics, colors, message, CTA and even the theme. 

For optimal performance and budget safety, I suggest creating two to three variations of your ad with striking differences and running them against each other. 

Then, take the winning ad from that round and make minor tweaks with another three variations for a second A/B test - this will give you an even stronger result. 

Just remember to let each variation clock in at least 100 conversions for the most accurate outcome!

Tourism Tiger