Reaching New Members Through Data-Driven Marketing
The tsunami of travel business & traveler data has greatly impacted the marketing landscape in the travel industry like no other. The desire for deeper digital data along with the wealth of customer touchpoints is helping travel clubs and travel-benefit businesses deliver positive experiences that foster loyalty.
Since the strategies involved in data-driven marketing are built on data extracted from customer interactions, benefit-usage, location, and social media engagements, it helps to form predictions about future trends. As a result, companies can better target and woo leisure travelers with personalized services who aren’t particularly brand committed.
According to a report by Google, most leisure travelers are fickle-minded and about 78% of those haven’t decided about the airline they want to book with while 82% haven’t chosen the accommodation provider. (Source)
Leisure travelers are open-minded about their travel plans and do not typically decide on a specific destination. They are frugal and make their travel plans after they stumble upon a good deal. Social media interactions help in shaping their travel dreams and influence their decision-making journey. Travel businesses can utilize this prime opportunity by analyzing their social media engagements, searches, website visits, and breakdown of benefit usage. These travelers are likely to book with the brand that provides relevant information and help them narrow down their choices.
With the effective use of data-driven marketing, brands can reach these deal-seeking travelers in real-time to speed up conversions. Here is how to do it right –
- Content is everything –
We hear it everywhere: Content is King. Visual content is highly engaging and can be effectively leveraged to design display campaign strategies. Think of it as the digital equivalent of holiday poster or a travel deal advertised on the bus stop. Nearly 54% of leisure travelers agree that the picture of a destination is important in deciding where they want to go next. About 65% of travelers search for online videos by destination and 3 out of those 5 use it to narrow down their search for destination or travel brand to book with. (Source) Brands should make the most of this opportunity by creating content in engaging formats to inspire their audience.
- Pay attention to your website, especially on mobile –
Almost 50% of travelers in the age between 20 to 34 prefer to make travel bookings via their smartphones. Another research tells that, online booking accounted for more than 40% travel sales in 2016 and is expected to grow further. (Source) Make sure your provider can help build an app or positive mobile experience around your brand.
Given that nearly 60% of destination searches come from mobile devices, the onus is on brands to leverage this data to identify and target their customers. Marketers should use this ‘search’ data to identify daydreams and convert that customer’s wanderlust to reality.
- Make smarter optimizations –
According to a 2017-survey, 65% of travel companies had dedicated data analysis team and 75% of those were expecting to increase their data-driven marketing budget in 2018-19. (Source) With increased digitization and evolving customer expectations, it is unsurprising that brands are offering accessible digital travel experiences. As per the Acxiom report, most of the leisure travelers are millennials who tend to be price-sensitive and favor travel brands that offer great deals. This means that brands need to put forward intelligent and insight-driven engagement to meet the expectations of the millennial travel base.
Brands should consider AI to optimize the data and offer the right deals delivered at the right time. Cross-device conversions can be either a hit or miss. So, make sure that personalized deals are offered while they book travel across multiple devices.