February 15, 2017

Digital Sightseeing – Best of Storytelling in Tourism

We automatically link travelling to positive experiences, emotions and stories. It is often THE highlight many people save an entire year for. This little escape from our everyday life lets us disappear into another world.

Tourism as an industry is ideal to attract the customer’s attention through storytelling. But what are the right ways and means to open a window for a travel enthusiast to the faraway world?

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Enjoying South Africa with all our senses

Sand is tickling our toes. The sun is warming up the skin. And a swarm of colorful fish is passing by. A surfer is trying to ride his first wave. The brand storytelling campaign video shows the beauty of South Africa, while a film accompanies the couple that enjoys its holidays with all senses. Even the pictures themselves are impressive, colorful and inviting. In the end, the brand video becomes a story that you will never forget. We do not want to spoil things – but we can say the following: this surprising moment is the reason why the experiences a tourist can make in this country get a totally different value.

My conclusion: great job. The idea is simple in the way of basically showing the country with all its different facets and aspects. The end of the video is surprising, therefore sticks and makes the story very emotional.


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After this trip we can move mountains again

The Austrian Tourism Association made it its aim to advertise their country with more than just pictures of mountains.

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Someone expecting a video in which a speaker talks about the benefits of the alpine country will be surprised. You can see a couple that lost itself in the grey routine of everyday life. While she is well aware of it, he is not. A nice vacation is supposed to bring some relaxation but the Austrian mountains have some disadvantages for smartphone-addicted city people. Told with a small wink, the story makes it easy for us to identify ourselves with its protagonists. The reader is getting emotionally attached. The story is set in Austria’s lush nature. Green meadows, crystal clear creeks and imposing mountains are inviting everyone for relaxation.


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But modern storytelling in Austria doesn’t end with just one video. An official tourism portal inspires the customers with experience reports, written by bloggers, as well as pictures. An interactive map is giving you insights into great activities offered at your dream location. Sharing buttons enable you to tell your friends about your favorite activities. This portal offers a short trip even before the customer even has set foot on Austrian ground. Thumbs up – now I am craving for Sacher cake and a hike in the Alps.

Hashtags and heroes of the pictures

The tourism industry can’t neglect influencer marketing. „How Instagram competes with the Neckermann catalogue“ is the headline of an article published in HORIZONT by Philipp John, founder of the influencer marketing platform ReachHero. Where do we get our travel inspirations from these days? I myself am tired of travel brochures. Coconut water at a beach in Thailand or a selfie at Time Square in New York – pictures published on social media channels inspire me for my next vacation planning. Our friends don’t constantly travel the world – that is why we use influencers for inspiration. Although they are strangers to us, they are today’s heroes and part of our everyday life. Travel bloggers and photographers let us dream of foreign countries or inspire us with a fresh view on already familiar places. An example that stuck in my mind is #simplyaxony by Philipp John.

The state of Saxony didn’t take itself too seriously and started an image campaign with the slogan „So geht Sächsisch“. Emilie Ristevski, Jason Charles Hill and Max Münch – three photographers with many followers on Instagram – explored Saxony and shared their pictures with the hashtag #simplysaxony.

The aesthetic, artistic and mystic imagery of the pictures invites everyone to see Saxony from a new and different perspective. Next to beautiful nature shots, which could easily be used as advertising posters, 182,000 likes and 2,600 comments demonstrate a successful influencer campaign. A great pity though that this campaign is not easier to find on the campaign page „So geht Sächsisch.“

In the past we share our stories after the vacation – today however brands use the stories in advance to attract the attention of future customers.


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