MARKETING TO THE MILLENNIAL TRAVELER
With summer in high gear (and the Florida sun in full beam), everyone is itching for a vacay. And in the last decade or so, millennial travelers are totally reinventing what travel and adventure are all about. With a more global perspective, an iPhone in hand, and a bit of wanderlust, young backpackers and sightseers are taking the world by storm. Studies show that 78% of millennials would rather spend money on experiences than “things” as they enter their peak earning years. Obviously, this is great news for the tourism industry, but how does this change the way we understand the tourist demographic and adapt our marketing tactics to them?
WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT THEM:
Fresh out of college (or studying abroad), kids today don’t see travel as a luxury. They see it as a necessary part of their personal growth and their life experience, that also improves their mental and physical health. With inflation rates, the cost of travel has dropped nearly 50 percent while companies like Uber and AirBnB make it easier than ever for millennials to harness their inner globetrotter. With a new cultural awareness and desire to share their experience, millennial travelers turn to the ultimate connection to the world, the Internet. They want new, creative ways to share and relive their adventures.
Despite the stereotype that millennials are lazy, spoiled Internet-addicts and the fact that they’ve grown up in an era of economic tumult, they’re the most budgeted and cost-conscious consumers out there. Although they are willing to splurge when it’s worth it, they’re most likely hounding for the best deals in the city, scouring Groupon and travel-hacking their way across the pond. This results in a unique, customized experience outside of typical sightseeing and makes the Internet their ultimate travel buddy, from booking to sharing their escapades.
HOW TO GET THEIR ATTENTION:
- Now more than ever, make sure your website and email marketing messages are mobile compatible and easy to navigate. Chances are your demographic of wannabe vagabonds haven’t even brought their laptop, meaning they’re constantly on their phones and tablets while cruising the streets of a new city.
- The lengths millennial adventurers will go for a good deal means you need to offer something better than the rest. They love anything artsy, local, and unique so introduce them to the trendiest finds in the city and earn their respect.
- Budget-conscious travelers are always looking for package deals. Offer them loyalty programs and rewards with easily accessible benefits that are attainable through the length of their trip.
- At any given moment in their travels, young people are checking Facebook, scrolling Instagram, Snap chatting and watching Vines. If they’re always connected then your destination needs to be as well. Flood all social media platforms, stay up-to-date, offer valuable information, and get in the conversation. Even government-funded tourism agencies such as Space Coast Tourism and Visit Orlando are using social media to offer valuable experiences and give tourists an opportunity to share their stories.
- Keep an eye on your reputation. Whether you’re in the hospitality industry or selling a product or service, after catching a glimpse of your brand potential customers will turn to Yelp, YahooLocal and Trip Advisor to see if you’re worth it. Make sure you have active engagement with your followers and are quick to respond to any negative backlash. There should never be reviews and mentions (positive or negative) out in cyberspace that you don’t know about. And of course, always offer great service so you can guarantee satisfied customers and positive reviews.
It takes approximately four seconds to capture the attention of the average internet-scrolling traveler. Make it count by evolving with this new generation of inspired, bold, and social adventurers. At 321, we want the map to lead to you by creating mobile-friendly websites, customer-boosting campaigns, email marketing tactics, social media content, and reputation management. Go ahead, give them the adventure they’re looking for.