How We Planned Our Summer Vacations: A Content Marketer’s Guide

Five cities, five different lessons. Here’s what you can learn from magazines, social media and destination sites around the world

The astronauts are circling the globe this summer. Wondering what we learned (other than the best taco stand in Mexico City)? Book trips and boost engagement with these five practical lessons from global CVBs, magazines and websites we scoured in planning our own trips.


1. Let the Experts Lead

Kevin Kiriluk, Art Director
Summer Trip:
New York City and the Beaches of Long Island

Subject matter experts are invaluable resources. Vogue, Travel + Leisure and Vice let the people who know food best — award-winning chefs — guide readers to restaurants in New York City. Smaller CVBs can also tap into their favorite chefs, bartenders and sommeliers; in Boulder’s Perfect Day series, 24 chefs outline their favorite places to eat, drink and relax in the city.

Content Marketing Takeaway: Showcase the best of your city with the help of the locals who know it best — win-win. 


2. Know Your Audience

Lizelle Galaz, Art Director
Summer Trip:
Mexico City

Your customers trust your brand. And they’ll trust your recommendations, too. Lifestyle brand Goop’s foray into travel is on brand and on point. Its Mexico City guide is simple and elegant, easy to navigate and features tons of vibrant recommendations perfect for the traveling 20- or 30-something woman.

Content Marketing Takeaway: Don’t be afraid to push your content’s boundaries with on-brand ideas your demographic will love.


3. Understand a Traveler’s Needs

Jeff Ficker, Chief Creative Officer
Summer Trip:
Amsterdam and Copenhagen

Where you stay in a city will make or break a trip. Will you be stranded without public transportation or immersed in the hip borough? Amsterdam’s interactive neighborhood guide provides a mini brand for each of the city’s sectors, like Noord where “urban renewal meets nature’s beauty” and Oud-Zuid’s “age-old art to high-end chic.” Choose a ’hood, then browse the CVB’s recommendations and detailed neighborhood map.

Content Marketing Takeaway: Anticipate how your users want to plan their trip, then lead them through the journey.


4. Go Where the Photos Are

Celeste Sepessy, Editor

Summer Trip: Berlin and Malmö, Sweden

Thanks to Instagram geotagging, globetrotters can hit the city’s most visit-worthy locales. We’re now armed with the best skate spots, a choice denim shop and, most importantly, where to pick up a pastry.

Content Marketing Takeaway: Encourage tagging! After all, user-generated photos are your friend.


5. Narrow Down for Niche

Caleb Malik, Digital Marketing Specialist

Summer Trip: Lisbon and Paris

Vast city guides are helpful, but they’re also a dime a dozen. PUNCH’s guide to Paris is a drinker’s dream — and broken down by natural wine, craft cocktail, aperitif bars and more. Each separate list outlines the destination, description and a “known for” callout that makes the piece super skimmable. Similarly, in this article, Travel + Leisure highlights London as a literary getaway, with urgency as a call to action. The piece outlines the authors — Jane Austen, Harry Potter, J.R.R. Tolkien and Sherlock Holmes — and the can’t-miss events, screenings and tours for book lovers on vacation.

Content Marketing Takeaway: Differentiate yourself with unexpected takes on the world’s most famous cities.


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