This blog post will talk you through how to build a consistent content strategy to attract your ideal client and increase revenue in the safari industry. Read on to discover the 8 simple steps to successful safari content creation.
Do you find yourself constantly fumbling to find a photo and write a caption for your Instagram? Do you have a list of relevant hashtags saved somewhere but can never remember where? Have you signed up and handed over your precious email for various free social media hack ideas and cheat sheets but are still lost when it comes to actually writing a post?
Do you have a website and all the great intentions to have an informative and valuable blog but don’t actually know what to write about?
If this sounds like you then you need to keep reading.
Start your journey to successful safari marketing content…
Where to focus your attention
It’s easy to get distracted by social media, you are constantly being told you need to post every day, be present on your stories, jump on new trends, post reels, have a Linkedin account, make Youtube videos… the list is endless. You get caught up doing the small tasks that stop you from doing the things that actually matter. Trust me, I’ve also been guilty of this.
But here’s the truth…an Instagram post a day will not make or break your business. Instead, you need to be focusing your attention on your own land, your website. Instagram, Youtube, Twitter etc are all rented land. At any moment that land can be taken away from you and all your hard work disappears before your eyes.
However, if you put your time and effort into your own land, your website, it will forever be working for you behind the scenes. An evergreen marketing gem. With the correct content on your blog, your website will consistently put you at the top of the list as the number one company to book their next safari with.
Let’s have a look at the steps it takes to make that consistent, quality content. Ready to get off the social media content hamster wheel? Follow the steps below, and then fill out the prompts to build your rock-solid safari content strategy.”
8 steps to successful safari content creation
Step 1 identify your ideal client
Once you have identified your ideal client you will have a better understanding of how to target them.Who is your ideal client? This will depend on the type of safaris you run. Maybe you do photographic safaris, cultural safaris, traditional ‘big 5’ safaris. Who are your previous clients, are they old or young, which countries do they come from, do they like luxury or budget safaris.
Step 2 – identify their pain points
Understanding their pain points enables you to write content to solve them and consequently position yourself as the expert. What is it that your ideal client is struggling with? Use polls on Instagram/Facebook to ask your followers what their biggest issues are when it comes to planning and booking safaris.
Conduct 30-minute research calls. Offer free safari advice in exchange for 30 minutes of picking their brain. On the research call ask your ideal client, ‘If you could click your fingers and get one thing done in relation to your safari holiday, what would it be?’
You can also use the Google search page to help you identify their pain points. Type in the pain points you identified on the research call and look at what other related issues people are searching for.
Then scroll to the bottom of the google page for ‘related searches’ use this to inform your next content.
Step 3 – Publish quality content on your blog once a week to solve their pain points
Showing up consistently builds trust with your audience and Google. From your market research and polls write content that solves their pain points. For example, if your market research call identified ‘not knowing where to go on a first-time safari’ as a pain point then your first blog might be ‘Top 5 destinations for a first-time safari’. Use their exact words to ensure that when they are searching for answers on google your blog has a good chance of showing up. Inside your blog use ‘calls to action’ too, for example, ‘book your first safari now’. This will then link your ideal client to your itineraries, booking page or a way to schedule a consultation with you or your team.
Being present and social on social media enables you to be approachable and at the forefront of people’s minds when thinking about the safari. Select the most appropriate social media for where your ideal client ‘hangs out’. For example, if you are targeting corporate businesses or high-end luxury safari-goers then use Linkedin. If your ideal client is a budget safari-goers then you could utilise ‘Backpacker’ groups on Facebook.
Post snippets from your blog onto social media or make a video giving a few bits of information from your blog. Your calls to action should lead them to your website, put your website as your bio link.
Identity and stick to a posting strategy that works for you. For example, posting 3 times a week at the time when your followers are most active (use insights to find out this information).
Still need help? If you are thinking you don’t have time to be dealing with constant social media content creation, no problem, we can do it for you! Our ‘done for you’ package includes social media marketing so you can be present with your audience without the stress. Check out our packages here.
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Wildlife photography doesn’t have to be complicated. Follow these 6 Simple wildlife photography tips to secure that outstanding shot. Also, be sure to read the follow-up tips to make sure that your photos are secured for a lifetime.
The first part of the post is about taking the shots, the second part is about keeping the shots! Both parts are very important parts of the wildlife photography process.
This article contains affiliate links, as an associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This will not cost you anything extra.
6 Simple wildlife photography tips to secure that outstanding shot
1. Get down low
This is my number one tip that will immediately make a big difference to the look of your photos. When we are on safari we tend to be looking down on the animal from the car. Especially if you are in one of those land cruisers where the roof pops open.
You know the score you are standing on the seat, head out of the rood, the wind in your hair. You are scanning for animals and you find something and immediately you excitedly start taking photos.
This is where I want you to pause, take a second to get down and sit on the seat or even crouch on the floor of the car. Now place your lens out through the window. Getting lower to the ground gives you a better chance of getting on eye level with the animal or below. This gives you a more realistic perspective and makes the viewer feel more connected to the animal.
With larger animals, like elephants, shooting from below them really gives them stature and allows the viewer to get a feeling of how big they really are. I took this photo while lying on the ground as the elephant walked past.
If you are in an open land cruiser then even better, you might be able to lie down on the car floor on your stomach. If this is not possible then another way is to place your camera outside of the car and, if you can, tilt your camera screen upwards towards you so you can see what you are shooting.
2. Shoot in Appateur priority mode (A)
In aperture priority mode you set the aperture and your camera sets the corresponding shutter speed and ISO (if your ISO is on auto).
This means you are deciding the depth of field (how much of the photo is in focus) and your camera sets the shutter speed accordingly so your exposure is balanced. The lower the f-number e.g. f2.8 the smaller the depth of field. This means less of the shot will be in focus. A lower f-number gives that shot where the animal is in focus and you get a beautifully blurred background.
If you are taking a landscape shot you will want the whole scene in focus so you will need to raise the f-number to about 8-11.
As stated the camera will then set the shutter speed to balance the exposure for you and you don’t have to worry about that.
3. Use a bean bag to steady your camera
A lot of wildlife photography takes place in a car where you don’t have the luxury of being able to use a tripod. To add to the issue, you are likely using a long lens. With a long lens, it is important to keep it still to avoid blur. A good substitute for a tripod is a bean bag. Place the bean bag over the car window and rest your lens on the bean bag. This enables you to keep the lens steady while you take your shot.
If you don’t have a bean bag or don’t want to carry one then fill up a sock with rice (uncooked obviously).
4. Shoot at the correct time
There are two reasons why safari equates to early mornings. One is the animals are more active in the morning as it is cooler in temperature. Two, the lighting is perfect for capturing these moments.
The same goes for golden hour, just an hour or so before the sun goes down. Make sure you are out and about during these times to try and capture the animals at the best time. Keep an eye on your ISO, you might need to raise it a little to compensate for the lower light conditions.
5. Don’t always zoom in
It is tempting when you have a long lens to use it to its fullest. The temptation is to always zoom as far as possible and get as close to the animal as possible. This is not always the best option. The beauty of a safari is seeing the animals in their natural habitat, out in the wild. Try to get a variety of shots including ones where you can see the whole animals in their surroundings.
A bonus tip is to notice the direction the animal is looking and leave space in that direction. This helps you tell more of a story with your photo as it leaves the viewer wondering what the animal is looking at.
6. Have spare SD cards & batteries
If you are anything like me you will be taking a lot of photos while on safari. You don’t want to miss any opportunities so it is better to take the shots while you can. However, this does equate to a lot of space being taken up on your SD cards and you won’t always have access to a way to back them up while you are away.
To overcome this make sure you have lots of spare SD cards. Also, consider the quality of the SD card, the higher the c number the faster the card is, the faster you can take photos. 10 is the highest c number meaning it will write the photos to the camera faster.
A slower SD card will take longer to store the photos meaning you might have a period where the camera is buffering while it saves the photos. You will not be able to use the camera at this point. Therefore it is worth investing in a quality SD card.
Of course, you also need to consider the size of the SD card. I usually don’t use anything less than 128gb but you can get SD cards that go up to 4Tb these days. I usually use these by SanDisk:
In terms of batteries, you always need to have a backup. Electricity isn’t always the most reliable to be able to charge your batteries every night. You might also be out for long days and might have to switch to a new battery. I always have 2 spare batteries with me on safaris.
Keeping the shots
Ok so now you have taken some amazing photos from your trip, the next part is just as important.
We have all done it, we have taken the photos, we know there are some killer shots in there. But we haven’t gotten around to downloading the photos, deleting the rubbish ones and backing up the good ones.
I know, I know backing up photos is not as exciting as taking the photos, but once you have done this part you can do the next exciting part. Editing and sharing the photos. So let’s take a look at the process of backing up your photos.
7. Backing up your photos
If you do have access to a laptop on your travels then it is a good idea to back up your photos. If not you will have to wait until you get home. To do this you will need a hard drive. For safari or even if you just travel a lot, I would recommend a more robust one. There have been numerous times where I have bought a normal hard drive and it has ended up breaking and I have lost a lot of photos.
Trust me, the sunken heart feeling when the hard drive corrupts and you lose the photos is not worth the few extra pounds you saved when you bought it!
I now use these ones by Lacie. They are more durable and can withstand a bit of rough treatment:
8. Back up your photos again!
Ok, so you have moved your photos from your SD card to your hard drive. Remember this is when you should then be filtering out the good photos and deleting the bad. The next step is to back up again the remaining photos. Remember when I told you about my hard drives corrupting… this is why you back up again. We now have a ‘My cloud’ device to ensure we don’t lose any more photos. This device backs up your photos to the hard drives inside and then onto a cloud system so you can access them from anywhere.
So there you have my 6 simple and effective wildlife photography tips. Plus tips on backing up your photos. I hope you found it useful. Remember the most important thing is to have fun and enjoy your holiday. If you miss the shots, don’t worry. I can assure you once you have been on safari once, you will definitely come back!
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What are the top 10 things to pack when camping in East Africa?
When camping, especially in the bush in East Africa, you need to make sure you are prepared. This list of the top 10 things to pack when camping in East Africa to help you have confidence when camping in the African bush.
*This article contains affiliate links, as an associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This will not cost you anything extra.
Hot water flask
Being able to boil the kettle once in the morning and then store the boiled water in a flask where you know it will stay hot all day is a game-changer. We use Stanley flask as they really do keep the water hot all day so whenever you stop for your mid-day cuppa it’s simple and fast.
2. Jet Boil
Staying with the tea theme… my second must-have is a jet boil, you literally have boiling water in minutes!
3. Camping stove
This is a no brainer if you want to be able to cook for yourself and save money you will need a camping stove. We use this one by Cadac as it has 2 burners and it’s easy to get the gas refills here in east Africa.
Better than a torch for the obvious reason of not having to carry it. We use led Lenser headlamps as they are powerful, light and rechargeable
5. Battery bank
You will be on the road for long periods of time and yes you can use your car to charge your phone. But what about when you are hiking, at the beach or just relaxing in your tent. Then you will need a battery bank to charge your phone. I have this one by Anker and I can get at least 3 full phone charges from it so you don’t have to constantly charge the battery bank.
6. First Aid Kit
We use this one by Lifesystems it is the ‘solo traveller first aid kit’, it has everything we have needed, we then just add in things like paracetamol, hydration sachets etc. I can’t find the exact one but this is a similar one.
We then carry a smaller version when we go on hikes etc
7. Leatherman Knife
It is always useful to have a leatherman it can be used to open bottles, file nails, cut wires etc.
8. Water purification tablets
I actually have only had to use these once and that was when I was hiking up Kilimanjaro. However, they are cheap and small and it doesn’t hurt to bring them along, put them in your hiking pack and if you don’t have to use them then great!
You don’t want to be stranded without a way to make fire unless you are an expert at bushcraft. These ones are more heavy-duty than usual.
10. Led light bulbsor magnetic strip lights
Hang them in a tree, magnetise to your car, either way, they are great for being able to see what you are eating when camping!
What did I miss?
I hope this guide to the top 10 things to pack when camping in East Africa. If there is anything I have missed, let me know in the comments below.
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If you have been thinking about a safari but are a bit overwhelmed with all the information out there, then keep reading. This blog post focuses on answering your Kenya Safari questions to find out if it is the best place for you to go on safari. Here are your Kenyan safari questions answered:
Kenya safari questions answered
So there you have your Kenyan Safari Questions answered. If there is anything else you would like to know about a safari in Kenya then do not hesitate to reach out, leave a comment below or email me directly, I will be happy to help.
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How about checking out these other safari destinations:
As a teacher who is currently not teaching, I have a lot of pent up teacher energy that needs to go somewhere productive!
This is why I am volunteering with a local school called Acacia Hill Academy. The school is located in the local village just outside the conservancy, only about 20 minuted drive away.
Locally owned and run
The school is privately owned by a local Maasai called Johnson he had donated some of his land for the school to be located, hired teachers, built classrooms and is overseeing the running of the school.
There are currently 4 classrooms and 4 teachers. Each year as the school grows there will be a new classroom built. The school is quite new and are still finding its feet but it is a great start. The school was built out of the frustrations of parents and their wish for smaller classes and higher quality education. The school aims to keep the numbers of students low so that the quality of one to one tuition can remain high. Currently, there are only 21 children attending the school. The problem with this, however, is that means there are not a lot of school fees coming in to be able to pay for teachers salaries and accommodation, food for the students, textbooks etc.
Aims and objectives
The academy only hires local teachers from the same village and aims to educate the children, not just in traditional education but also in issues regarding conservation, wildlife and tourism. Given their proximity to the Wildlife Conservancy, these children are likely to be the next generation of rangers, guides, managers, waiters, house keekers etc in the tourism and conservation industry so it is important to teach them the value and importance of these industries from an early age.
How am I helping?
My aims are to support the school in reaching its objectives. This for a start has been in a simple way of helping to decorate the new classrooms. I have been painting educational content on the classroom walls to aid in their teaching. I am also helping to support the teachers with their teaching methods and just supporting them in their delivery in particular in the delivery of physical education which is not always a priority in local schools.
Goals for the future
We have many goals for the future and of course, the wish list is great, but the number one priority is to make the school sustainable. At the moment the school is relying on donors to help build the classrooms and pay the teachers salaries but this is not sustainable in the long run. Many parents cannot afford to pay the school fees for their children. This means there is not enough money to pay the teaches salaries, for food for the students or to build further classrooms, by textbooks etc.
As you see providing high-quality education is not as simple as building a new school, there are many and far-reaching consequences and of course benefits. Without also educating and providing opportunities for the adults they will not be able to pay for the education for their children. The priority, therefore, is finding a way to provide opportunities for the parents, thus enabling them to pay school fees and therefore teachers salaries etc. Thus securing the future of the school for the next generations.
In the future, the school wishes to add more classrooms and of course, teachers as the needs increase. They also wish to erect a security fence around the school to ensure the safety of the children.
As a PE teacher myself, I understand the importance of physical education and I aim to be able to create a football and netball pitch on the property to give the students and the surrounding community somewhere to safely play sport, be active and stay healthy. I also wish to provide the adults with further education by running evening classes, this should help increase their employment chances and lead to a better future for their children also.
How can you help?
If you have a trip planned to Kenya and have extra room in your luggage, one of the easiest ways you can help is by bringing over provisions. The following are always of use
clothes, shoes, trainers
school supplies – textbooks, exercise books, stationery, educational posters etc
Maybe you are coming on a trip and have a particular skill you are willing to spend time sharing and educating others about. Maybe you wish to organise a trip specifically to help and volunteer, if so get in contact and I can help organise that for you. Can you hold a fundraising event or collect donations from your community? Maybe you are in charge of the charitable arm of your business and are looking for a charity to support. Does your school wish to partner with Acacia Hill Academy as pen pals to learn about their culture, traditions and way of life? Maybe you have been involved in projects like this before and have some advice?
If there is any way you can help please do not hesitate to reach out and get in contact and we can discuss further.
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Everything you need to know for a self-drive safari in East Africa
An overloading trip anywhere in Africa is not a small undertaking. There is a lot you need to prepare for from petrol stations potentially running out of petrol, being on the roads for over a day without seeing another car, punctures, shops not being well socked, roads being flooded or just washed away and lots lots more! Read this post to understand everything you need to know for a self-drive safari.
Firstly the best thing you can do is be over-prepared when you pack. If you are coming from Europe or the USA etc don’t expect things to be the same as they are there. You will not find convenience stores or petrol stations on every corner, shops are not open 24/7 and there are plenty of times when things are just ‘temporarily not working’. When temporary can be anywhere from 10 minutes to months.
It is important, therefore to have everything you need with you. When you see a petrol station fill up, don’t wait for the next one. Have spare tyres and puncture repair kits, have plenty of water, a shovel and enough food with you. I will give a comprehensive packing list later so you can check off exactly what you need.
Embrace the challenge
That being said, a lot of times it is the challenges that make the trip so much better. With challenge comes achievement, sometimes it also brings temporary failure, but in the end, you will succeed. You will soon learn that there is always a way. People will always come to assist you and together you will ‘make a plan’ and then eventually you will be back on the correct route.
It might just take a bit longer or take you a different route but it is often along this new route where all the excitement happens. It is along this new route where you are presented with opportunities to get to know the locals, learn new cultures and traditions, learn the local way of improvising with what you have and making it work.
I have so many stories from my time in East Africa, where things didn’t go to plan. Where something went wrong but it always worked out in the end and I can look back at all the times with a smile on my face. I remember the events of what subsequently happened fondly.
The best advice I can give you for when things go wrong is to not stress. Do what you can to try and prevent the situation from occurring in the first place but once it has occurred then you need to just go with it. Don’t stress about the things you can’t control, stay calm, use your head and come up with a solution.
Stories from the road
One story that springs to mind is when I had friends visit me in Tanzania from South Africa and Malawi. The first situation was when I went to pick them up from the airport. We were only about 10 minutes from the airport and the car radiator blew up. We spent a few hours at the side of the road and eventually got towed to a local garage.
The rest of the trip continued in a similar fashion. We were a large group so we towed a trailer with a rooftop tent with us. The trailer broke on no less than 4 occasions. We spent a lot of time trying to fix it at the side of the road and meeting many helpful locals along the way.
On one particular occasion, we were stuck for a long time. We had exhausted playing noughts and crosses in the sand with the Masai children and the sun was about to set. At that point a Diamond Gin truck came by, we flagged it down got a few ‘samples’ and proceeded to have sundowners with the Masai (adults) while we continue to attempt to fix the trailer.
In that entire trip, we pulled the trailer with us for 10 days and only used the tent on top of it on one occasion. The rest of the time it was out of action. Eventually, we left the trailer at a campsite and continue the trip without it as it was causing more harm than good. My friends and I affectionately refer to that trip as the ‘Roadside retreat’ due to the amount of time we spent on the roadside.
We flagged down the Diamon gin truck got a few ‘samples’ and proceeded to have sundowners with the Maasai (adults) while we continued to attempt to fix the truck
We are lucky to have lived in very safe countries, whenever we have broken down we have been at least two of us and we always stay together. We have never had a situation where we have felt unsafe. However, there are some countries where it would be dangerous to break down, especially at night. To be honest you need to prepare and try and avoid those situations as best you can.
An example of being underprepared was a young couple we met in Namibia. They were travelling around Namibia in a Ford Corsa. Bear in mind Namibia has endless gravel roads, desert and has a small population for the size of the country and you will understand the issues this car may cause. In the back of their car, they had firewood, a tent, 2 chairs and some 2-minute noodles.
To prepare their car for the trip they painted the side of the car in blackboard paint so they could write messages on their car… Unsurprisingly their car had broken down and they were stuck at the campsite outside the Sousesveli with a broken car, no food and their visa running out the next day (I’m not making any of this up). To help them out we gave them dinner and discussed their options with them.
In the end, they had to exchange their broken car for a lift to the border the next day so they could renew their visa or leave the country. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for spontaneous travel and seizing the day but you need to be realistic about travel and take the necessary preparations.
In terms of car preparation sometimes it does depend on what county you are in but a lot will be te same. Whatever country you are in I would say it is best to have a 4×4. We have a V8 land cruiser so we know we can handle any situation. Our trips are always multi-day, multi-destination trips. We camp and are usually self-sufficient when camping, meaning we cook for ourselves.
A lot of the time this is out of necessity as much as it is preference. We like to visit remote areas and sometimes even bush camp so you need to have everything with you. Here is a list of what is permanently in our car and then the extras we add:
Permanently in the car
Roof top tent – matters, pillows, duvet stays in the tent
A large part of your preparation will be planning your route. Having an idea of how far you will be driving in a day and where you will be going will help you to also plan where you need to top up fuel, food and water.
We start the trip with a full fridge of meat, milk, yoghurt, etc and full stock of dry food and fruit and veg. Generally, we will need to re-stock after a maximum of a week so you need to ensure your route planning allows for this or plan your food intake accordingly. Usually, you can find fruit and veg being sold on the side of the road so this is easy to top up. Canned good and quality meat are harder to find.
If you know you will be in a remote area and doing a lot of driving then you may need to take an extra petrol canister. Remember driving times will generally be longer than they will be to cover the same distances in Europe or the US. As a side note, never believe google maps’ predicted travel time, it is ALWAYS longer than the predicted time.
The roads are generally not great. They are mostly single lane, there are a lot of trucks, goats, camel, sheep, cows, people and bicycles on the road. Some roads are just dirt roads and some are littered with potholes.
If you want to be comfortable and not drive all day then try and drive less than 500km in a day. This will give you enough time to get to a camp set up and be prepared before it gets dark.
As a general rule, I like to be at a campsite for around at least 2-3 nights. Sometimes this isn’t necessary or desired as it might just be a stopover. However, if it is a planned part of your route then at least two nights is good. Two nights gives you time to enjoy the place take in your surroundings and do some activities before you have to pack up and move on.
Obviously, a great benefit of road trips is that you can move around and experience a number of places on one trip. This is great but don’t try and fit too many places into your trip. If you only stay one night at each place it doesn’t give you time to enjoy the place, you will spend most of your time driving to the camp, setting up and packing up camp.
One of the best things about self-drive safari is that you can take your time. You are on your own schedule and there is no one to rush you. If you are particularly enjoying a place then stay a little longer the next place will still be there tomorrow.
Pros and Cons
Remember it is not all plain sailing when self-driving. The roads are not always great and you may experience mechanical issues. It’s long hours on the roads and some things will go wrong. The other drawback is that you have to organise everything yourself. From park entrance fees, routes, shopping, cooking etc. A self-drive safari isn’t for everyone but if you love freedom, and are confident driving long distances in a 4×4 then it just might be for you.
If you want the freedom of self-drive but with more comfort then you can always stay at lodges instead of camping. This takes out a lot of the stress including shopping for food and cooking, setting up camp and finding camp spots. You can also ask the lodges to help you organise and pay for park and conservation fees and even do your actual safari with the lodge.
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