Travis Launches Bookable Links Allowing Creators To Earn By Recommending Travel Brands
Many creators create content for free or rely on one-off brand deals to make a living. However, this can be an unreliable income source, which is where the creator-led commerce platform for travel Travis comes in. Influencers can create bookable links and earn a percentage of the total booking value from sharing their favorite hotels and flights.
Today, we’re speaking with Nicole Tj, CEO and Co-Founder of Travis, a creator tech startup empowering a new generation of creators with the opportunity to make money from their travels.
Nicole has over ten years of experience in the travel and creator industry through various roles, including creator, influencer manager, and strategy consultant at Deloitte Digital, specializing in tourism.
Nicole shares, “This, combined with my personal experiences as an avid traveler – shapes what we’re building at Travis to pioneer a creator-led commerce future for the $800B online travel industry.”
What is Travis?
It is a free travel app that helps you and your friends plan your next trip with visual interactive mood boards. Nicole and her team believe that the future of travel will rely heavily on creators because of the personalized, diverse, and specific travel content they can share.
However, many creators struggle to make a sustainable income from their content, which is where Travis’ new bookable links feature can help.
It allows creators to make bookable links they can share with their followers. Creators don’t pay any upfront subscription fees or need a minimum follower requirement to join the platform.
Nicole adds, “Creators create these booking links – of hotels – by adding a photo, tagging the hotel brand, and sharing a few lines about their experience. These links are all accessible via a central Shopfront on Travis. Creators add these links on socials to make their travel content bookable – for example, Instagram Stories of a hotel room walkthrough. When consumers click through, they get more hotel room info, real-time availability, and rates, and could complete the booking here. When they book, the creators earn a cut.”
When someone uses your link to book a hotel, you earn 5% of the total booking value and can cash out with Venmo, Paypal, or a preferred bank account. For example, a creator would earn $25 when someone uses their link to book two nights at a hotel stay that costs $500 in total.
Nicole shares, “Early users get 50% more on earnings (7.5%)! This is higher than any existing affiliate sites offer.”
The team also hopes to expand their bookable link product into experiences and travel accessories, such as travel outfits and gear.
It also offers a Bio Link Shopfront option where creators make an aesthetic Shopfront collection of their favorite hotels.
What Need Does Travis Fill in the Market?
Social media is often the first place people gather inspiration, information, and ideas about their next trip. As a result, creators drive consumer decisions about travel with their content by providing recommendations on where to stay, where to eat, and what to do while on their trip.
Unfortunately, creators are not currently earning a cut of the transaction despite being a massive part of the consumer purchase process.
Nicole explains, “Creator-led shopping has been picking up pace in other consumer industries like fashion and beauty. With creator-led tools like LikeToKnowIt (making creator outfits shoppable), Amazon Storefront, Instagram Shops launching mid-pandemic in 2020 and just last week Amazon Inspire (creator-led shopping) – we are conscious that none of these are fit for purpose for the needs of travel creators, consumers, and industry. But it does beg the question – what does creator-led commerce look like in the future of travel? Travis unlocks the potential of creator-led commerce for travel.”
She adds that out of the 200 million creators worldwide, 90% currently have less than 100,000 followers, according to the Linktree Creator Report.
The Travis team also surveyed 512 creators with 2,000 to 100,000 followers and found 48% of creators want to go from part-time to full-time within the next year. As a result, sustainable income sources are necessary for these creators to support themselves.
The idea for the bookable links product came out of this need for sustainable income sources. After working with many travel creators over 12 months, Nicole and Co-Founder Thomas Lo concluded that they needed to create easy monetization tools.
She shares, “It’s incredibly frustrating to see just how there are no tools especially designed to meet the needs of creators in travel. Today’s affiliate marketing platforms are dated and clunky to use (traditionally serving publishers’ websites and blogs), while brand-influencer 1:1 collabs require high effort to source to drive one-off income. We want to give creators access to an easy tool to earn from their travel recommendations – a way to monetize existing content and social reach.”
Many affiliate marketing programs also require creators to meet many requirements, such as high follower counts, which limits monetization opportunities for those still growing their following.
Nicole explains, “We want to lower the barrier to access for creators – providing them the ability to monetize their content and influence within their niche communities, regardless of size of following.”
What Makes Travis Different Than Other Travel Platforms?
The most significant difference between Travis and other travel platforms is the ease of use.
Nicole shares, “Ease. It sounds simple, is often overlooked – but does not exist today for creators to earn through travel or travelers to plan their next trips. Travis is designed for a new generation of travel creators and consumers. Travis is not out to be another travel content or social travel platform. Travis is here to be the monetization tool for creators. Beyond that, this will ultimately make it much, much easier for consumers to discover, plan, and book travel based on creator recommendations – in one place.”
Travis also works with over 10,000 hotels and hostels globally. The platform is consistently adding new hotels weekly, giving creators many options when it comes to finding their favorite travel spots and sharing them with their followers.