By Steve Davis, Marketing Communication Consultant, Talked About Marketing

Instagram is the darling of social media marketers in the tourism industry. We put our best images forward, but its restrictions around links in posts mean many users who swoon over our content have no easy way of taking the next step toward us.

We do get a contact button for our Instagram business accounts and we can run advertising with links, but most tourism operators are restricted to one active link; the bio link.

One approach to this restriction is to use the bio link to take visitors to an online booking page. The risk here is that we jump ahead to ask for the ‘sale’ too soon. The enduring AIDA model of marketing notes that most customer journeys follow a progression from Awareness to Interest to Desire and THEN to Action. If we pressure our Instagram users to buy too early in that journey, we risk alienating them.

Another approach is to link directly to a tourist operator’s homepage, but most of these pages assume a visitor knows next to nothing about a business. Generally speaking, this is a good starting point, but our Instagram visitors have already had a taste of what we offer and it’s sub-optimal to send them back to ‘go’ when they’re already on their journey towards us. A middle ground is needed.

Enter Linktree. This online tool helps you quickly build an intermediate page to send your Instagram visitors to. Your Linktree page is a simple, unclutter list of links that you’ll hand-pick for your visitors, much like a concierge offers a small menu of suggestions to help visitors make quick decisions about where to go next.

For example, if you share Instagram content about meals, nearby hikes and special packages, your Linktree page might contain links to ‘Our Menu’, ‘About Our Chef’, ‘Top 5 Nearby Walking Trails’, ‘Book Online’, ‘Instagram-Only Deals’, ‘3 Reasons to Visit’, etc.

This uncluttered, fast-loading page makes it easy for visitors to click straight through to what THEY’RE interested in.

To activate Linktree, you replace your current bio link with the custom link created in your Linktree account, typically: You can login and update your link menu easily, to keep it relevant.

There is a basic, free plan with limited design options and a pro plan for US $6 per month, which unlocks statistics, control of colour settings and the ability to include images and other embellishments.

While Linktree is an easy-to-use service, you can take a DIY approach. At the moment, I am using the free plan on my podcast account for The Adelaide Show (see image below), however, I have simply created a Linktree-like page for my business Instagram account, Talked About Marketing (see image below). If you’re web savvy, I’d recommend crafting a simple, concierge-style landing page for people who click through from your bio link. This way you’ll close the loop with your Instagram marketing and help this darling child earn its keep.