Navigating the Marketing Waters

Successfully marketing a travel product online can come with a number of hurdles. With 61% of users researching their travel plans online, and 51% booking online, brands are constantly vying to stay top-of-mind for consumers.

Digital platforms offer marketers, big or small, a tool to deliver compelling communication strategies on a level playing field. In order to overcome industry barriers & engage consumers, digital marketers can leverage a multitude of retargeting techniques.

Turn Lookers into Bookers

Creating time cohorts is a great to way to gather insight on your customer’s booking patterns as you can pinpoint the exact time when they are converting. We’ve noticed customers who scope high price-point products or long travel distances generally convert several weeks, or even months, after the initial visit to the website. Capitalize on this newfound knowledge and make the most out of your campaigns by optimizing frequency caps and spend!

What’s the Right Mix?

Compared to other industries, travel sales are highly seasonal. In terms of allocating marketing dollars, start with contextually-targeted display campaigns to promote your brand. Then, follow up with strong conversion-focused advertising such as retargeting. This will keep your brand top of mind throughout your customer’s consideration period.

During slow sales periods, retargeting can convert users who have already shown an interest in your products. Display creative with a strong call-to-action coupled with an off-season discount to boost sales. For more tips, check out our recent blog post on creative best practices.

Action Packed Creative

It’s difficult to do white sandy beaches any justice within the confines of a standard display unit. With online video, advertisers now have the capability to captivate consumers and drive them back to their sites. According to eMarketer, the travel industry’s average online video CTR is 0.92% . Pretty impressive!

If you don’t want to offer a discount, try showing them something they haven’t seen. Let them know about nearby attractions, delicious cuisine, or seasonal events to bring them back to your site. You should vary and test the call-to-actions to see what resonates with your audience. For example, Hipmunk runs ads for their new business-travel product by testing different messaging for the best conversions. Test to boost sales!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Make it Social

There are many social media platforms currently available, and your customers are probably using at least one. Not only does social media act as a way to engage your current customers and offer high touch customer service, but it also generates content for your brand. According to Funsherpa, more than half (52%) of travelers changed their plans after researching their trip via social media, and 76% post vacation photos on a social network after the trip. Manage and build your brand’s reputation at the same time! We recommend syncing your advertising campaign promotions with your social media efforts for more reach. Also, set yourself up with TweetDeck or HootSuite to monitor all social media channels and see how active your competitors are in social media space.

 

Special mention to Mikaela Edson for her help in drafting this blog.