Catchy hashtags aren’t new to Aaron Clossey, social media manager at Jetsetter, the travel arm of Gilt Groupe that TripAdvisor acquired last year. After all, his personal twitter handle is #clossboss. So when he needed an evergreen hashtag for brand users to rally around, he used the simple yet action-oriented #jetsettering. Members of the site have responded in force with tweets and photos of activities ranging from snorkeling to canal rides in Venice.
Clossey presented recently at BDI/Business Development Institute’s Food, Beverage and Hospitality Social Media Marketing Summit in New York about Jetsetter’s efforts to harness visual social media content. The brand’s initiatives have involved contests, partnerships and influencers, all in keeping with its whimsical, irreverent persona.
While Jetsetter got its start with exclusive flash sales in the luxury travel segment for its invitation-only upscale subscriber members, the brand has evolved since then. “We’re a lifestyle brand, not just an OTA”, [online travel agent] Clossey said. Now Jetsetter also does personal travel planning, for trips like honeymoons. In addition, the brand offers a trove of content on its site that’s accessible to more than its current 20 million members.
“Our social goals are to be the go-to resource for inspiration and connectivity around travel. We want to reward and recognize our community, curate relevant content and be responsive to our customers”, Clossey added. Currently Jetsetter is active on six social channels: Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google + and video. “The objective is that when our members go on trips, they attribute their experience back to Jetsetter”, he said.
Clossey outlined some of Jetsetter’s specific social media programs:
Being a Jetsetter correspondent: The brand launched a contest for members to write and submit 15-word quirky, punchy descriptions of properties accompanied by a photo. The Jetsetter editorial team selected three winners, and the prize for each was a trip. Clossey said all the reviews are still on the Jetsetter site, and they proved to be helpful in terms of “member feedback and uncovering insights about favorite destinations and properties”.
Leveraging partnerships: Jetsetter sought to team up with like-minded brands in the style, food and adventure categories. Recognizing that New York City is their most popular member destination, they partnered with Zagat to produce content that appeared on both sites. That included co-branded Pinterest boards, Twitter chats between editorial teams and an integrated social experience, Clossey said. The result: “The Best New NYC Best Sleeps and Eats”.
Tapping into influencers: Jetsetter identified a selected group of local influencers, with an emphasis on creative professionals, and paired each one with a borough of New York. They launched an iPad magazine with the content and local recommendations that Clossey said has turned into another source for bookings.
Progressing on videos: “We’re making video content a priority, though we haven’t tapped the potential yet”, Clossey said. Planned efforts will include Jetsetter correspondents using Go Pro cameras to create Vine videos. They’re also experimenting with time-lapse videos that will represent a “day in the life of a hotel room”, but only public-facing shots with G-rated content.
(Photo courtesy of Jetsetter on Instagram:
foggy a.m. in the bay #nofilter #SF#travel #norcal @sshhheid)