Famils: How They Can Work Wonders For Your Brand

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While it’s still hot, hot, hot outside, the hectic summer season in the hotel and tourism sector is beginning to wind down. For our client, Seahaven Noosa, this means it’s the perfect time to kick off our media and influencer familiarisation (or famil) program for 2017!

What’s a famil?

If you haven’t heard of a famil before, the concept is based around inviting a journalist or social media influencer to experience your product or service, in the hope that they will write, post or blog about your brand to their audiences.

When executed correctly, a famil program will keep your brand front-of-mind for people already engaged with the brand, allow you to reach entirely new audiences and grow your social media following.

In 2016, Seahaven Noosa’s famils resulted in coverage in News Corp’s nationwide travel lift-out, Escape, APN newspapers and the Gold Coast Bulletin’s Gold Coast Eye, to name a few.

Similarly, social media influencer famils were largely responsible for growing Seahaven Noosa’s Instagram from 6,000 to 11,000 followers in twelve months – alongside some very strategic content creation!

Here are my top tips for hosting a successful famil.

Know your audience

Inviting the 17-year-old social media influencer with one million followers may increase the likes on your brand’s Instagram account, but unless you are targeting the people who follow said 17-year-old influencer (likely to be other teenagers in this case), your newfound Instagram followers aren’t going to convert to sales. Seahaven Noosa is a premium product, therefore we always target influencers and publications that appeal to people who are genuinely going to press the ‘Book Now’ button on their website.

Plan, plan, plan

Plan the famil to ensure the journalist or influencer experiences the very best of what you have to offer. It’s the little things that count – transfers from the airport, champagne on arrival and a pre-booked table at the best restaurant in town for when they arrive. Get in touch with the regional tourism organisation to see if they’d like to be involved. All these things serve to make their experience memorable, and give you the best chance at positive media or social media coverage!

Prep the journalist or influencer

Remember, the person you invite on the famil has a job to do too, so it’s your responsibility to make sure they have what they need to do it well. Brief them thoroughly on what is expected, and provide key messages and background information on your brand well before the famil commences.

Don’t be disheartened

Journalists and influencers are entitled to freedom of speech, therefore they are not obliged to tell the world how great your product or service is unless they genuinely believe it. I have always been lucky enough to work with very fair journalists and influencers with regards to Seahaven Noosa, however I have heard many stories of other brands receiving negative coverage as a result of a famil. Remember, if this happens, one bad review is not the end of the world. Take the time to listen to what they have to say and look at it as a way to improve your brand and offering.