You know the feeling of visiting a new city- you want to see it all, tour everywhere, but you don't want to look or feel like a tourist. Guided tours exist, but those offer that touristy feel. Why not create an audio tour to help travelers feel like locals and help put money in your pocket while you're at it! Let's go!
Where to start
If you're already a traveler, you'll have a natural knack for "telling the story" of a city. If you don't travel much, not to worry, your research prowess will make up for your lack of frequent flier miles- after all, any good writer can become a topical "enthusiast".
1. Regardless of your background, start by making an outline of what cities you know best and which cities are most traveled in the US or abroad. An easy Google search will reveal the most traveled cities. Consider looking at airbnbs most traveled cities. Airbnb clients sound like the type of clients that would fit your target market.
2. Look at what's already out there. Once you decide on your target- let's say you go with the Airbnb crowd since they clearly don't want to be the traditional tourist- list all of the things a local does- locals don't go to souvenir shops, they have their favorite eateries, music events, art openings, car shows, farmer's markets.. Start writing out a "from point A to point B" tour that includes the city's most famous or loved spots and populate the tour with those local's attractions we mentioned along the way.
3. Promote it. Write little supporting paragraphs for each area along your tour and be sure to write from a conversational tone. Remember, you're creating a tour with the sense of a local's vibe.
4. Record it. This is an audio tour, so get to recording the tour you've spent time creating. Be sure whatever method you use to record you will be able to upload it to the internet for easy downloading. Tip: if you speak several languages, consider making it available in those as well. You can also have it translated for you!
5. Take your tour! If you're in the city you created the tour for, awesome! If not, close your eyes and picture yourself doing it. Does it make sense? Is it exciting? Does it naturally flow? Can the participant stop and start the tour easily?
6. Artwork. Since you'll be selling this online you'll need photography or art. Unsplash is an excellent, free photography site with tons of travel-associated imagery you can use as a cover for your city guide.
7. Now it's time to sell it. Combined with what book marketing tips you're learning here, contact your city's travel bureaus and get in touch with businesses like Airbnb. Don't forget about audible.com and other audio book retailers if you want to go through distribution.
Check our post on marketing with Instagram storiesto help give prospective buyers a real sense of the tour they'll buy!
Keep the Faith and May the Force be with You!