In our modern global – world, there’s no place on Earth too far away to visit. While everyone has their own personal destinations, the majority of travelers still share one thing in common – wanting to get the best value in travel prices. The GCC travel and tourism industry has witnessed the infiltration of digitization across the entire value chain. From influencing the decision to travel to receiving feedback after the travel is complete, everything can be conducted on a digital platform, i.e. the smartphone.
The smartphone penetration for the GCC markets is among the highest in the world, reaching 78% in the UAE and 77% in Saudi Arabia. Therefore there lies a great opportunity for the GCC to leverage on digitization, according to the Global megatrends and their impact on travel and tourism report, published by PwC Middle East.
Additionally, another report published by Expedia Media Solutions suggests that some consumers visit up to 38 sites before booking travel. While a report by the online marketing agency Fuel , states that nearly 48.4% travelers use search engines when beginning to research a trip.
Majority of travelers use digital search to kick start their trips. In order to meet these new demands, the travel industry must -constantly adapt their ways of reaching potential customers, delivering ultra-precisely targeted content is the key to success, and personalized retargeting makes it possible.
User Segmentation: Fulfill User Needs
Segmenting users is made possible by tracking an endless stream of new customer touch points. A precisely-targeted advertising campaign can reach users like never before, and finding specific users at various points in their purchasing journey.
This is especially meaningful in the travel sector, where thousands of variables must be calculated quickly to meet the demands of a rapidly changing environment. From the moment a user inputs their destination; they generate tons of information which can help us understand how they’ll get to a final purchase.
Product category segmentation is one of the most robust segmentation types. It builds upon products viewed by a potential buyer like flights, cruises, hotels, cars to rent or sightseeing trips. Each of these products is usually set in a specific period of time, so even more granular segmentation can be achieved by adjusting the offer to the client’s calendar.
Potential and existing user segmentation identifies users based on their unique customer journey. Is he an existing customer or a high-potential buyer? The travel industry can learn about the kinds of behaviors these users have. Do they look for first or last-minute offers or do they purchase packaged hotels with flights? Do they travel frequently or rarely? These are the important questions that predictive modeling can answer when trying to deliver accurate messages. An experienced retargeting provider can help you define these goals for each group and individually adjust the stakes for each user and bid for them accordingly to achieve the most promising results.
Cross-Selling: Offer Perfect Options
The power of online travel search is rooted in its wide array of choices. You can plan nearly every leg of a trip sitting at home on a computer. If planning a trip now starts at home, travel campaigns must be able to catch on early and follow their purchasing pathway.
Banners with embedded search boxes are an easy way to inspire customers with their next vacation idea or to help undecided ones with making a decision. Modern banners offer a lot of options. Banners can now display real search boxes that can redirect to the original website and work like separate engine, not a pop up ad.
In-depth product recommendations are also possible thanks to advanced deep learning-based algorithms. For example, if a user books a city break in Dubai, they’ll need a flight, perhaps a hotel, and maybe car to rent. Perhaps they want to see The Burj Khalifa, or enjoy the sand dunes in a desert safari. Only a robust engine can collect, observe and analyze this data, to present a single offer that works on a highly personal level. With a proper database and a cutting-edge technology provider, your travel campaigns can be based on such advanced retargeting scenarios with tailor-made banners for each client.
Cross Device: Anywhere, Anytime Offers
Today’s consumers use myriad devices to browse, search and shop. It’s crucial to have a platform that is able to meet customers wherever they are, on any device.
According to PhoCusWright 41% of travelers research trips on smartphones or tablets. 55% of those travelers then prefer to book trips using a desktop or laptop even if they researched using mobile.
Most-likely screen prediction is made possible with advanced analytics and predictive modeling. Advertising campaigns on different platforms enables marketers to run cross-device campaigns, target people on-the-go and take advantage of not only timings in their offers, but the screens most likely to be used.
Travel E-Commerce Meets Customers On Their Terms
Online travel providers have always been part of the e-commerce world, but digital transformation is making it more demanding to meet a rapidly changing environment with an influx of new data streams.
By leveraging these new data points and having a retargeting technology provider, brands can reach new breakthroughs in understanding their customer lifecycle. They can reach customers early in the buying process, on their own personal devices, or in the comfort of their own home as they plan their journey.
Written by Shady Francis, Regional Country Manager, MEA at RTB House