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Travel brands growing with Influencer Marketing

Grace Donelson

30 Jun 2022 · 6 min read


As the world enters the summer season after a years-long period of restricted travel, many consumers are actively planning new adventures and seeking new surroundings.

Because of the influx in interest and bookings, hospitality and travel brands are making extra efforts to promote their services. These efforts are most visible in the brands’ turn towards influencer marketing. Sponsored collaborations, shared travel photos, plus sweepstakes and giveaways are just some of the successful tactics these brands have utilized to boost their social media presence, customer loyalty, and brand awareness.

Using the Tagger platform’s affinity, mentions, and growth toggles, we found these travel brands growing with the help of influencer marketing.

  1. Hipcamp (@hipcamp) - An online travel marketplace for campers and “glampers,” Hipcamp has used influencer marketing to recover and even grow post-pandemic. With available stays nationwide, the brand’s sponsored mentions from influencers help increase Hipcamp’s brand awareness and extend its reach across the country. At just under 330k, the brand has grown by 100k in the past year.
  2. Away (@away) - Despite losing followers around the pandemic's beginning, Away Luggage has managed to recover and send its Instagram account back towards positive growth in recent months. With a potential reach on their sponsored mentions as high as 36,000, influencer collaborations as a marketing tactic are still working in Away’s favor.
  3. Bonobos (@bonobos) – The light-wear apparel brand that specializes in men's wardrobe must-haves has incorporated the use of sponsored posts into its campaigns. With 287 influencer-sponsored posts, Bonobos has been using influencers to showcase their summer wear. Many of their sponsored influencers focus on the importance of proper vacation wear for family trips. Since last year they have gained almost 20,000 followers, growing from 145k to 153k.
  4. Supergoop (@supergoop) – The sunscreen brand dedicated to sun care has been a massive hit across all social platforms. The pandemic success brand has been using influencer sponsors to grow its brand engagement and awareness. With nearly 1000 influencer sponsors, Supercoop's utilization of influencer marketing has skyrocketed its engagement rate and reach. In March 2022, their reach was as high as 2.1 million. Popular skincare influencers like Tiktok’s Hyram and Krisy Lin praised the brand on their socials resulting in an influx of followers and growth on Supergoop socials.
  5. Expedia (@expedia) - As one of the full-service travel brands on this list, Expedia saw a slowdown in follower engagement and growth on their Instagram when travel restrictions began. Still, as soon as August 2020, their page experienced increasing growth. While the brand already had over 1k sponsored mentions with influencers, from March 2020, they have had over 200 sponsored posts.
  6. JSX (@flyjsx) - The hop-on jet service for travelers wanting a crowd-free or airportless experience, JSX has had phenomenal success with its’ efforts in influencer marketing since the pandemic. Growing at a steady pace of over 25k followers since March 2020, JSX’s Instagram growth is thanks to the brand’s high engagement and regular Influencer mentions.
  7. National Geographic Travel (@natgeotravel) - At 45.7M followers, National Geographic Travel undoubtedly has the most considerable following on this list. While their sponsored posts are few and far between, the real gem of their influencer marketing strategy is that every single post on their page is a collaboration with a creator. Photographers, storytellers, and nature geeks are featured on Nat Geo Travel, and in turn, National Geographic is on their pages. These collaborations, combined with captions that tell more of a story about the photographers, humanizes Nat Geo’s page and increases their brand awareness and reach.
  8. MODERN ADVENTURE (@modernadventurists) - Curators of national and international group travel trips, Modern Adventure has seen recent spikes in its’ growth. However, much of their influencer marketing is at a micro-level, considering their smaller following size. Their audience is not limited, though, as Modern Adventure’s collaborations with their “tastemakers” regularly highlight their social media page. Their mentions are nearing 140, and with this only being over the past year, their progress is stellar.
  9. SteamLine Luggage (@steamlineluggage) - The vintage-inspired luggage brand has generated tons of Instagram engagement and growth in recent months. By keeping their followers entertained with their Instagram story, Influencer mentions, and highlights of customer reviews, the brand has more interactivity with their customers. With just under thirty sponsored mentions in the past year, the mid-tier (follower count) brand has found various ways to interact with audiences.
  10. Hopper (@hopper) - Though the flight and hotel price predictor experienced a downturn in their follower count at the beginning of 2020, they have slowly but steadily brought their Instagram to a positive growth rate. With 425 mentions since March 2020, their efforts are certainly in their best interest.
  11. Hatattack (@hatattackny) – Despite being one of the smaller brands on this list, Hat Attack NY’s use of influencer-sponsored posts has helped increase its brand awareness. Seventy influencers have only mentioned their handmade woven goods yet have had a potential reach above 20,000.
  12. Airbnb (@airbnb) - Another online marketplace for travel lodgings, Airbnb specializes in homestays and vacation rentals. While the brand saw a downturn in travelers and hosts with the beginning of the pandemic, their use of influencer marketing was able to help bring them back into the public eye once hosts caught up with safety and sanitation regulations. Over 3k sponsored mentions and 306 since March 2020 have helped the platform increase its reach, brand awareness, and follower count.
  13. Baggallini (@baggallini) - The luggage and carry-on brand Baggallini has experienced slowed-down growth a few times in recent months but still managed to grow its Instagram following overall. Though the brand has a decent number of sponsored posts with influencers, they have also experienced significant engagement and audience growth using giveaways. These giveaways help to boost brand awareness through the widespread coverage of giveaways by influencers and entry participants.
  14. Girl Gone International (@girlgoneinternational) - A community of womxn internationally organizing travel and sharing information and advice for female solo travelers. The brand maintained constant Instagram growth throughout the pandemic and maintained its engagement level. Using Instagram Stories and IGTV, their posts keep audiences entertained and regularly prompt responses, raising engagement rates.
  15. Travelocity (@travelocity) - Influencer marketing aided Travelocity’s loss of followers from the beginning of the pandemic as soon as August. This growth spike directly coincides with the brand’s first influencer collaboration of 2020, having no sponsored ads in the months preceding August.
  16. AvantStay (@avantstay) - The online short-term rental marketplace features rentals of all kinds, focusing on curating travelers’ experiences. The brand has used influencer marketing over the past year, as seen in its high mentions.
  17. Orbitz (@orbitz) - Certainly a one-stop-shop for travel plans, Orbitz immediately saw an uptake in their followers and engagement when they began sponsored posts again in August 2020. Their collaborations with typically mid-tier and micro-influencers have boosted the brand back into social media spaces and, more importantly, increased their audience engagement.
  18. Cheapflights (@cheapflights) - By comparing flight prices, Cheapflights helps customers find the cheapest flight for their circumstances. Their mentions are full of influencers, and they regularly share customer posts, boosting their engagement and customer alignment.
  19. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (@klm) – Named one of the most sustainable airlines, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines provides an affordable, comfortable, and eco-friendly travel experience. The Post-pandemic travel itch has caused now, more than ever, travel influencers seeking new travel destinations. Due to the rise of travel since last summer, KLM has utilized influencer marketing on their Instagram and has boosted engagement with over 500 influencer mentions.
  20. Jet Blue Airlines (@jetblue) – Jetblue has utilized sponsored influencer mentions to expand its brand outreach. With 403 individual influencer-sponsored posts and mentions, their total engagements and potential reach have increased.
  21. Iberostar Hotels and Resorts (@iberostarhotels) – With more than 100 hotels and resorts located primarily in tropical destinations, Iberostar is a popular stay for influencers and families alike. While traveling for the last two summers seemed impossible due to the pandemic, as travel restrictions loosen, more vacationers are looking for somewhere relaxing to wind down. Using travel influencer sponsors, Iberostar has attracted more travelers from social media to their various locations.
  22. Vrbo (@vrbo) – One of the leading competitors in the rental services industry, Vrbo focuses on curating the best experiences for travelers. With 211 sponsored mentions from influencers including John Legend and Karamo Brown, it is no surprise their potential reach has reached as high as 3.5 million. Using both Instagram and Tiktok, Vrbo has increased its audience engagement and ROI by using sponsored influencer mentions.
  23. Skyscanner (@skycanner) – Despite competing with other full-service travel agencies, Skyscanner has still generated steady influencer engagement. With 130 sponsored mentions and a potential reach on their sponsored mentions averaging over 30,000 this year, Skyscanner has found ways to incorporate influencer marketing into its brand.
  24. Priceline (@priceline) – As one of the many travel services providers, Priceline researches and compares the best rental car, hotels, and flights for your vacation. Priceline is not new to influencer-based marketing. With over 600 individual influencer-sponsored mentions, they continue to grow as a company. See how Tagger’s platform can help your brand connect with the right influencer for your campaign.

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