Developing a content strategy is an integral part of a holiday park’s marketing plan. Done in the right way it can help you create your content as well as a benchmark to measure how successful it is.
In this article David Lakins looks at why developing a content strategy is an essential component of any marketing campaign, and how it should ensure your content meets your business objectives and needs of your customers.
Based on the original BHHPA Article April 2023 – Content Marketing for Holiday Parks
Developing a Content Strategy for your Park Website
For many website and social media managers the difficult part is figuring out what type of content to publish. What should you write? How can you get people to discover your content? What will engage people? What will make people book a holiday or enquire about a holiday home for sale?
In an age of information overload, using content to attract visitors and then to engage with them has never been more important.
But developing an effective content strategy requires more than simply putting pen to paper. It requires an approach that puts your target audience at the heart of your research before you start writing. The core of a strategy is to tailor content to your audience’s interests. To engage the reader, you need to get inside the head of your reader and understand what they are interested in. Look at the world through your guest’s eyes to understand what will resonate with them. Try and understand their needs, wants, desires, fears, and more.
If you can then write copy that informs the reader (in a way that matters to them) and then also persuades them to act, you have a winning formula.
8 simple steps to developing a content strategy:-
- Define your goals
It is essential to consider what you want to achieve with your content. Do you want to improve brand awareness; increase your website traffic; or generate holiday bookings and caravan sales enquiries?
- Identify your target audience
Who are your ideal customers or readers of your content? Are they new or existing customers? What sort of content are they looking for? Do they have specific questions, interests of needs?
- Ask your audience
Think about contacting your audience using social media, email, or surveys and ask what topics they would like to see covered in your content. This can help you create content that is tailored just for them.
- Map your content to your marketing funnel
Map out your customer journey across the stages of customer engagement – Awareness, Consideration, Conversion, Loyalty, and Advocacy. This will help you identify the varying needs of your customers at different points in the marketing funnel. You can then map out what content will deliver to each of these requirements.
- Conduct a content audit
Whilst mapping your content, it is an ideal time to review your existing content and identify what is working well and what can be improved. A first place to check through is your is your Google Analytics as this will help you understand what type of content resonates with your audience.
- Develop a content plan
Time to create a plan for content that aligns with your goals and target audience. Determine what types of content you will create (e.g., blog posts, videos, social media posts), how often you will publish, and what topics you will cover.
- Conduct keyword research: There are several tools that can help you identify relevant content themes that are related to the parks market – look at Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ahrefs. They can all help you come up with topic ideas that are relevant and valuable to your audience.
- Research your competition: Look at what other parks are publishing, what topics they are covering, and how they are presenting their content. You may find the odd “gold nugget” you can use for yourself.
- Use social media: Follow relevant hashtags on Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms to see what topics are currently trending. This can help you stay up to date with the latest news and events.
- Repurpose old content: Look at your existing content and see if you can update or repurpose it into a new format. For example, you could turn a blog post into a video or create a series of social posts based on an old article.
- Develop a simple content plan – either in Excel or a table in Word. This will help you identify your key messages and themes. This content plan serves as the backbone of all future communication.
- Determine your content channels
Identify the channels where you will distribute your content (e.g., social media platforms, email newsletters, website). Consider which channels are most effective for reaching your target audience.
- Measure success
Track your content performance using analytics tools to understand what is working and what needs improvement. This will help you refine your content strategy over time.
Content ideas for a holiday park
Here are some content ideas for a holiday park:
- Virtual tour: Create a virtual tour of your holiday park to show potential visitors what they can expect when they arrive. You can use 360-degree photos or videos to give them a sense of the surroundings and facilities. Check out Google’s Virtual Tours and Matterport 3D interactive tours.
- Holiday park activities: Highlight the range of activities and experiences that visitors can enjoy during their stay, such as swimming pools, outdoor games, dog walks and entertainment.
- Local attractions: Showcase the local attractions and points of interest around your holiday park. This can include nearby beaches, walks, historical sites, or cultural events.
- Customer reviews and testimonials: Share positive customer reviews and testimonials on your website and social media channels to build trust with potential visitors and showcase the experiences of previous guests.
- Seasonal content: Create seasonal content that is relevant to your target audience, such as holiday park activities during the summer or winter season, holiday-themed events and packages, dog-friendly pages, and family-friendly activities during school breaks.
- Travel tips and advice: Offer tips and advice to help visitors plan their trip, such as travel guides, and local recommendations for restaurants and shops.
- Community news and events: Keep holiday park home-owners up to date with news and events happening within the park community. This can include updates on community events, new facilities, and park improvements.
- Homeowner profiles: Create profiles of holiday park home-owners to showcase the diversity of the park community and highlight their unique stories.
- Investment opportunities: If holiday park homes can be used as investment properties, create content that explains the benefits of owning a holiday park home for rental income or as a holiday property.
- Environmental and sustainability efforts: Share information about your holiday park’s efforts to promote sustainability and protect the environment. Include information about recycling programs, energy-saving initiatives, and eco-friendly practices. And don’t forget to promote the details if you are a David Bellamy Blooming Marvellous Pledge for Nature
Remember to focus on creating content that is informative, engaging, and helpful to your park guests. By providing value to potential visitors, you can build trust and establish your holiday park as a top destination for their next holiday stay or holiday home purchase.
Content ideas for a residential holiday park
Here are some content ideas for a residential holiday park:
- Lifestyle content: Showcase the lifestyle and community aspects of living in a residential holiday park. This can include interviews with residents, profiles of their homes and gardens, and features on community events and activities.
- Location content: Highlight the location of your residential holiday park and the surrounding area. Create content that showcases the local attractions, scenic areas, and nearby towns and cities.
- Residential park home design: Offer advice and inspiration on design options for choosing a home on your residential holiday park. This can include tips on interior design, park home technology, decking and landscaping.
- Retirement living: Create content that is relevant to your target audience, such as articles on retirement living, financial planning, and health and wellness.
- Pet-friendly content: If your residential holiday park is pet-friendly, create content that highlights the facilities that are available for pets, such as dog washes and dog-friendly walking routes.
- Customer reviews and testimonials: Share positive customer reviews and testimonials on your website and social media channels to build trust with potential residents and showcase the experiences of current residents.
- Sustainable living: Again, share information about your residential holiday park’s efforts to promote sustainability and protect the environment.
Make sure that your content resonates with your target audience and provides value to potential residents. Remember, the objective with this type of content approach is to create content that showcases the lifestyle, community, and location aspects of living in a residential holiday park, so that you can attract new residents and build a strong sense of community within your park.
Measuring the performance of your content
Tracking the performance of your content is a must if you want to understand what is working and where you might need to make improvements. Using some simple analytics tools like Google GA-4 and Google Search Console will help you refine your content strategy over time.
Using GA-4 to track your content
Hopefully, most parks have moved across to the new Google GA-4 Analytics by now. You can read about the transition that Google is making to GA-4 in the September 2021 BH&HPA Journal.
Don’t forget the deadline is looming for the changeover from Universal Analytics – July 1st 2023 is when Universal Analytics will stop collecting data.
In the early version of Google’s Universal Analytics, website activity was primarily tracked based on sessions and page views. In GA-4, activity is measured by events, so as well as page view and session data you can also track events such as clicks on your holiday booking widget, how far someone scrolled through a page, pageview to video views, downloads, shares, newsletter sign-ups and more.
The Pathway Exploration report within GA-4 is a useful module to clearly see the journey that a user takes through your website. You will find it under the “Explore” section – and it is a useful tool to see where they entered the site, how they navigated your park web pages, and interacted with it, before converting or leaving.
Spending time reviewing this section will help you to see those steps clearly and improve the user experience.