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How Travel Brands Collect and Activate Zero-Party Data


Browser culture and booking indecision notoriously plague the travel industry. Research reveals that consumers typically visit up to 38 different travel websites over 45 days before finally committing to their dream vacation.

Increased competition among travel booking sites, coupled with the onslaught of online vacation deals and distractions, make it incredibly challenging to stand out from the crowd. However, savvy travel brands have figured out a way to connect directly with travelers, collecting self-reported preference insights and data about their booking intentions along the way. Those that adopt a zero-party data strategy can deliver hyper-personalized travel recommendations, while increasing market share.

A strategically-executed quiz can go a long way toward collecting large amounts of actionable zero-party data. These insights can then be used to deliver personalized product and service recommendations, or loyalty rewards, promotions, and experiences, thereby boosting brand affinity with consumers.

By collecting data directly from your customers and providing them with some sort of value in return - for example, a fun quiz that tells them the best destination based on their preferences - you can use that information to better target them with relevant offers, coupons, discounts, experiences, and more.

Here are three ways travel brands can leverage zero-party data by collecting preference insights with interactive experiences.


Marriott Bonvoy

Marriott Hawaii featured a visually-stunning personality quiz on its website as a way to drive online engagement and promote its exclusive resorts in Waikiki. The quiz included several engaging travel-related questions uncovering the vacation preferences and interests of participants. In the end, Marriott presented users with a recommended Waikiki resort based on their answers.

Marriott Hawaii was able to leverage this zero-party data to profile its customers and segment its audience for personalized retargeting. is an OG in the online travel game. For more than 20 years, they have delivered the best flight and accommodation deals to consumers in real-time. But providing the right deals at the right time is no small feat. Priceline employs a laser-focused strategy to collect preference insights, vacation desires, and motivations from its customers to power truly personalized marketing.

As travel-goers searched for the hottest deals for summer vacations, published a visual and engaging category quiz on its site, along with a social wall that captured its followers' recent trips to Texas. Based on participants' responses, provided each with a location and description of their ideal city break. To sweeten the deal, followers were automatically entered into a sweepstake for a chance to win a trip to their dream destination.


Air New Zealand

The Auckland-based airline launched an interactive category quiz to promote and recommend a range of its US long-haul flight destinations. The quiz included six carefully crafted multiple-choice questions, whereby contestants had to choose one image-based answer from nine – each relating to a long-haul US travel flight destination.

After answering the questions, participants entered a few personal contact details to solidify their entry to the contest. They also had the option to opt-in to future marketing communications. On completion, entrants received a recommendation for a travel destination based on their answers and preferences. The quiz helped Air New Zealand neatly profile visitors on their favorite pastimes while providing the airline with rich zero-party data to use for personalized retargeting.

Today, the traveler's decision-making journey is more complex than ever before. Consumers have a multitude of sites to look to for information, and they research destinations across platforms, using multiple devices, making it more difficult for brands to keep track of them and make a meaningful connection. For progressive travel brands, interactive quizzes that thoughtfully collect zero-party data can drive future bookings and help you truly personalize your marketing efforts, maximizing profitability.


About the Author

Richard Jones is CMO of Cheetah Digital, a cross-channel customer engagement solution provider for many of the world’s best brands, including American Express, Hilton, Walgreens, and Williams-Sonoma. Richard was previously CEO of Wayin before the company was acquired by Cheetah Digital in 2019 and rebranded as Cheetah Experiences. Jones is an expert in zero-party data and is committed to helping advertisers and media companies survive the ‘Ad Apocalypse’ through pioneering new ways to engage consumers.


Photo by Frank Vex on Unsplash

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