Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Google’s to Blame for Impatient Travellers

As I was on the underground tube in London this morning, I had an epiphany – Easter was coming up and I was going to take advantage of the longest (Public Holiday) weekend in the year!  So I Googled Airbnb.
I was suddenly horrified to discover my wifi wasn’t working underground.  How inconvenient?!  What’s wrong with my phone?  I am assuming everyone else is busy researching destinations, replying to emails, and I am now frustrated that I am getting left behind!

When exactly did ‘no wifi’ become unacceptable?

Since instant-search has become an almost habitual part of our day-to-day life, travel consumers are now accustomed to getting whatever it is they want, 24/7, and become instantly impatient when their expectations are not met, or demands are not delivered.  Product availability as well as range, and provider, has increased tenfold and as the line between meta-search and OTAs blurs further, the term ‘spoilt for choice’ has never been more apt.

So when will these impatient travellers (like myself) be satisfied?  Here’s a look in to some of the current ‘buzz words’ and what travel brands really need to be paying attention to in order to satisfy this new & dominating breed of consumer:

  • Personalization:
We are hearing this everywhere, and it’s all about your data.  Lay the right foundations and you too will build your Empire State Building. Retargeting is also becoming increasingly more effective. Marketers in travel are re-engaging the customer with personalized retargeting.  This, coupled with dynamic content personalization (presenting the right content, to the right demographic) means that consumers are taking personalized and relevant advertising for granted.

  • Guest experience:
Craig Reid, CEO Auberge Resorts was recently reported to explain the importance of the service experience, “there’s a higher degree of expectation that the service should be tailored to the individual. There’s less adherence to time and protocols and guests really require the service entity to organize the experience around them rather than the guest organize himself around the experience.”  As brands recognize this, it’s not just websites which are becoming mobile optimized, brands are delighting consumers on-trip by communicating with them through the device, 24/7.

  • Video and Social Media Sharing
For brands to convey the experience of their product, video + social media + sharing is a must.  A good brand story connects and engages the consumer emotionally, heightening their likeliness to purchase your product above other brands they are less engaged with. 

We can all learn by sharing our lessons learned, when it’s our own ‘blooper’ however, it’s sometimes not such a comfortable experience!  Perhaps one of the most recent & notable experiences for video & social media sharing -  is Thailand Tourism’s video, criticised for 'romanticising stalking'.  An example of how video + social media + sharing can sometimes have an undesired affect.  YouTube it now – we’d love to hear your comments below!  

If you’d like to learn more about how you as a travel brand can instantly engage and convert the new connected travel consumer, join us in Miami this June 2-3.  Check out the line-up here!

And if you’re on the move and want to find out more it right now... Google it! ;)

This post was written by Emily Assender, Global Conference Director, EyeforTravel Ltd.