The World Travel & Tourism Council estimates that American travel and tourism will return to pre-pandemic levels this year, adding nearly $2 trillion to the economy. But travelers themselves won’t be the same. Digital-savvy consumers want more choice, customization, and hyper-connected – yet contactless – service. When preparing to meet the demands of today’s travelers, marketers must keep the following in mind:
- One-click, one-stop - Travelers will expect the ability to book their entire trip, including related services and amenities, in one centralized place on any device.
- Loyalty is up for grabs - Consumers are now twice as likely to try new brands and experiences due to the pandemic, meaning once ironclad loyalty to specific airlines or hotels has likely eroded.
- To the spa with Fido - Some 65 percent of pet owners want to bring a four-legged friend along their travels for comfort, reflecting the co-dependency trend between people and their pets.
- Mid-week, contactless hotel experiences - Hybrid work is changing hotel demand, with many professionals seeking mid-week stays for a change in scenery and contactless check-ins for efficiency.
So how can marketers rise to the occasion and meet the growing demands of today’s travelers? By properly organizing and activating first-party, of course. To satisfy consumers, marketers must truly understand who they are and how to best tailor offers and experiences to them.
- Use enriched data to round out customer profiles
The path to delivering the superior customer experience travelers now demand starts with understanding who that customer is, across both unknown and known individuals. With all of the touchpoints consumers are using, marketers need cross-device IDs and identity resolution to stitch together and store data about individual customers from across website pages, apps, previous bookings, destination interests, and more. Technology like a Customer Data Platform (CDP) can help brands of all sizes enhance the information they collect with unique, predictive intent, and interest data that provides a single customer view.
- Ensure integrated activation across channels
Connecting your customer understanding to marketing activation is how you reach individual customers with the content and offers most relevant to them. It’s this data set that ultimately drives direct website bookings. Ensure the system you are using to unify and enrich your data can easily integrate with other technology like demand-side platforms, paid search, metasearch, email service providers, and website personalization that activates customer understanding in an omnichannel way based on real-time signals and interests.
- Leverage insights to drive personalization
Given the fact that hospitality brands are now at the whims of consumers ready to make a switch if it suits them, advertisers need a single system that provides solutions for both acquisition and retention. That’s why even more important than the enriched first-party data at your disposal are the insights you can gather from it. With the ability to analyze individual customer interests and behaviors, you can discover and engage consumers currently in-market, spot at-risk ones, and gauge real-time interest to upsell them.
With ongoing changes in privacy legislation and browser policies, first-party data has become increasingly crucial in the marketing world. There are exciting shifts on the horizon for travel that will likely permanently change the industry, and the ability to keep pace with consumers begins and ends with first-party data made even better through enrichment, activation, and insights. Are you ready?