A picture speaks 1,000 words may be a cliche to some, but for Durango it is a cliche that pays off. The Durango Area Tourism Office learned that using Pinterest to promote the unique beauty of the area increases awareness among travelers, bringing more visitors to this slice of Colorado heaven.
The Official Pinterest Fan Page of Durango, Colorado has over 890,000 followers, and not one was bought, Anne Klein, public relations officer for the tourism office told Argophilia.
“This tiny SW Colorado mountain town has a very visual brand, and Pinterest has several ways to communicate our offerings. A picture speaks 1,000 words and we use it to tell our story–especially when it comes to our breathtaking beauty.”
But how was it possible for such a small mountain town to gain so many followers on Pinterest? A “Pin to Win” campaign organized by the Durango Area Tourism Office in collabortation with the Colorado Tourism Office is just one of the “secrets.” Everything else, is sheer beauty.
Durango has 19 Pinterest boards, carefully categorized to showcase some of the most interesting and representative attractions and activities available in the area. From water rafting to zip line adventures, from art and culture to shopping, and beyond, Visit Durango on Pinterest is one of the most exciting presences by a resort town on this popular photo-sharing network. And Durango is not the only place that understood how valuable images can be to attract more tourists.
The Mountain Sky Guest Ranch just started its Pinterest journey. With less than 20 followers to date, we cannot really speak of a successful presence. But this is just a humble beginning for the ranch.
“We do not have a large facility (just 30 guest rooms) and nearly an 80% return rate year to year, so word-of-mouth is by far our most powerful marketing tool,” Stacy Townsend, Director of Sales and Marketing told us.”We saw a major success on facebook, reaching over 90,000 with 1,700 engaged users and 124% virality on one post. This seemed remarkable considering we only have 1,300 fans. Our Pinterest experience has not yet been as grand, though we have not yet attained as many followers as we have on Facebook.”
The Mountain Sky Guest Ranch still has a lot of work to do on Pinterest to engage audiences better, including optimizing the profile with a link to their site, and actively promoting its Pinterest presence on Facebook as well. Plus, the Pinterest wall is missing some of the ranch’s most interesting offers, like the Wild West Women Adventure, “an extravagant gals-only getaway in paradise.” This and other offers should be well documented on Pinterest, which now offers even better tools for businesses to reach and engage audiences effectively. Although not easy to do so, using Pinterest for advertising is not impossible.
Hotels and resorts have a great channel in social networks like Pinterest: they can truly showcase what they have to offer, they can include special promotions, and so on. The infographic by Prestige Marketing below, although dealing with the generalities of marketing via Pinterest, may offer a few valuable clues, especially concerning important demographics of the social network.