Not so long ago, all travel brands had to do was register with peer-to-peer review sites like TripAdvisor to gain online visibility. Now there is too much noise, and a lack of trust.
Subsequently, the travel industry has to find new ways of reaching your audiences. Not only that, but you have to convince them you offer a great travel experience.
As the digital landscape continues to grow, technologies drive consumer behaviour. This creates challenges for travel brands that struggle to evolve. What is crucial for marketers is to recognise emerging trends and identify how holiday seekers respond to them.
ComScore recently released a report to help travel professionals understand consumer behaviour when visiting online travel sites. The industry has to accept that digital is the dominant channel for travel seekers, and key trends are emerging in the travel space.
Unsurprisingly, holiday seekers in the UK are most active. 39 million people use multiple platforms, with the lion share of activity conducted on mobile phones. Reports show that 37% of mobile users search for flights and 43% search for accommodation. However, only 18%-25% actually book on smartphones.
What you may be surprised to know is that heavy users of travel sites in the UK mostly check the weather, ticketing and movies.
Digital technologies have disrupted the travel scene. Artificial Intelligence enables consumers to compare prices, mobile geolocation has replaced paper maps and video has shepherded in the concept of experiential marketing.
Marketers in the travel industry that are not already incorporating video into your strategy risk falling behind the competition. The statistics speak for themselves. Whilst 80% of online users watch videos, only 20% are reading content.
To get a taste for video content, take inspiration from Joie Ride TV. The online broadcasters recently launched a video series targeting the spectrum of holiday seekers from budget travellers to luxury retreats.
The secret to travel videos is not to focus on the location, but to reveal what travellers can do once they arrive. Joie Ride gets right under the skin of a destination and features alternative activities such as cooking, fashion, health, events and lifestyle.
Darling Media are running a similar series of videos. Using an influencer – vlogger or actress – the videos focus on the finer aspects of travel such as local cuisine, farmers markets and boutiques. The intention of the videos is to act as a “travel matchmaker”.
With the advancements of VR, AR, 360-degree and animation, travel videos are becoming even more innovative. Delsey Paris’ lastest video sets a high bar with an animated fairytale which reminds travellers its not the destination that matters, but the journey.
The Travel Network Group is also using video content to spearhead their latest campaign, ‘Do Not Disturb.’ Focusing on the need to escape the stress of every day life by taking a holiday, markers have developed a broad range of ideas around on simple concept.
Videos inspire people of all ages, and with the majority of travel seekers researching their next trip online, marketers have to go digital to capture the attention of modern audiences. From here on in, digital platforms are the rostrum for your destination.