Wanderly Wagon has been running guided tours of Inis Oírr for many years. The business is now in its second generation. A traditional guided tour with a difference; two purpose built “wagons” where the tourists sit, pulled by tractors. A true west of Ireland, destination experience. They run between four and five tours per day that last between 45 minutes and one hour. They operate seven days a week from April 1st to October 31st. The capacity of the two tours combined in 35 (adults and/or children). An adult ticket costs €15 and a child ticket costs €5. Wanderly Wagon can also be booked privately, by a tour group or party for example, outside of the five set departure times.
The tour makes four stops around the island for the tourists to take photos, ask questions and learn about the location; the lake, or Loch Mór, the Plassey shipwreck (familiar to millions all over the world from the opening credits of the TV show Father Ted), O’Brien’s castle, and the nearby graveyard featuring the sunken church. From the highpoints, photographs of the entire island can be taken and also the cliffs of Moher in the distance.
Wanderly Wagon is a small, rural Irish business with huge potential, but marketing hasn’t been a priority for them to date. The owner is extremely keen to improve the digital presence of the business. There is a particular requirement that the business book at least a portion of their tickets online in the future.
A digital analysis of Wanderly Wagon showed us that the business had no real branding; a company logo or standard fonts and colour scheme. Although the business did feature in the search results via business listing sites and social media, it did not have a dedicated website and customers couldn’t book a tour online. The business did have Facebook and Instagram accounts but posting had been sporadic, the profiles were unbranded and some basic information was missing. There was one success story; TripAdvisor. Wanderly Wagon has more than 30 reviews, all but one of them 5 stars.
Based on what we learned, a digital marketing strategy was put in place; customer personas were targeted, weaknesses in the competition have been be capitalised upon, and gaps in Wanderly Wagon’s marketing up to this point have been filled.
The identity and brand voice of a company is the cornerstone on which all marketing is built. Businesses large and small invest hugely, both time and money, in its design. Specifically, a brand guideline document was prepared, with an accompanying set of digital and print assets. The brand was relaunched and positioned in the market on social media using posts that showcase the island and the aspects of the tour that appeal to the customer personas; history, culture and reviews. In the weeks leading up to the website launch social media promoted this and the new booking system.
The primary showcase for the Wanderly Wagon brand identity is the new company website. Using the assets created above, the target audience has been given a user friendly, easy to navigate space for learning everything about Wanderly Wagon. Recommendations concerning web hosting and domain name were given to the client and decided upon. Out-of-the-box, WordPress (the platform used for this website) doesn’t have the functionality to take bookings, so third party software has been used. A number of options have been looked at, each with pro’s and con’s and this process is ongoing.
Building a high quality website wasn’t enough. The keywords that matter to the business have been identified and pages have been either optimised or created from scratch in order to target those search terms. Content is an ongoing objective and the client has been given a content plan for future keyword targets and training in how to produce and optimise this content. This process, as well as ongoing optimisation, will be led by the reporting and data.
Most small businesses do not have the resources to employ a digital marketing professional, a data analyst or a web developer, on a full time basis. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t need professional content, website updates, and customer insights during their day-to-day operation. The Wanderly Wagon staff now have the tools, the knowledge and the training they need to run the digital aspects of their business into the future.
A brand identity should be developed by all businesses should do when they open, no matter their size. The branding document, led by what learned about the customers, became the foundation for everything else, especially the logo and colour scheme. Over the three months of implementation social media has been taken up a level, reflected in triple digit increases across the board. This, in the long term will see huge benefits for the business in terms of growing their customer base.
Wanderly Wagon now have sleek, modern website that represents their brand. A wide variety of design techniques were employed; maps, image gallery, reviews and more, to attract and retain visitors. The booking system brings the marketing of the business to new levels and is baring fruit already.
Wanderly Wagon are now set up for the future; a growing content strategy, spreading the reach of Wanderly Wagon to a wide audience across the globe, an audience they could never reach before. And with training they can maintain and grow this themselves, along with running their social media and managing the website.
Wanderly Wagon now have all the tools they need to grow in the future. There will never be any shortage of tourists coming to the island, but they are now much more likely to choose Wanderly Wagon and many will book before they even get there. Not just a business, but now also a brand, Wanderly Wagon will see growing success in the years to come.
“To say we are delighted with Adam’s work is an understatement. From designing a logo, building a website, online booking system and a social media campaign, we got the full package. Adam was dedicated, creative and supportive throughout the process. He designed it all with us in mind, creating video user guides for training. We are delighted he has agreed to stay with us for our website updates and social media.”
Bríd, Wanderly Wagon