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Ryan Bifulco

Member since November 2003 Contact Ryan

Ryan is a digital and travel pioneer with over 20 years of experience. An expert on travel and tourism, Ryan has been featured on Business Talk Radio's Travel Show, ABC Radio, NY Times, and USA Today. He founded and leads Travel Spike which is the largest travel media platform in comScore. Prior to Travel Spike, Ryan was at LastMinuteTravel.com as VP Strategic Alliances and VP Operations. As a member of the AirTran management team, he established and ran the revenue management, pricing, distribution planning, tour, and e-commerce departments. Ryan launched airtran.com in 1998 and guided it to become the number one airline website according to Salomon Smith Barney. He worked for US Airways in international revenue management. Ryan was promoted three times in three years and was responsible for over $675 million in revenue per year. He received his degree in Economics from Wake Forest University.

Articles by Ryan All articles by Ryan

  • The Mysteries Of Mobile in Marketing: Travel on 09/30/2014

    Mobile is awesome and it is the future, but we seem to have a lot of mixed messages on mobile. Here are some thoughts and stats on the mysteries and misconceptions of mobile.

  • What Can Native Advertising Learn From 'Homeland' And Jason Bourne? in Marketing: Travel on 08/05/2014

    I'm a big fan of spy shows like "The Americans," "Homeland" and the "Bourne" movie series. The top operatives in these programs have one common thread in that they are able to assassinate somebody plus make it look like it was an accident. That is what truly makes them a rare pro. Native advertising done right also takes a pro.

  • How Machines Will Become 'Agents' in Marketing: Travel on 04/29/2014

    We used to drive to see a travel agent to book our family vacation. What if your house, watch or car knew you well enough to book your next trip? Can inanimate objects and devices from our daily lives leverage enough data to make our vacations more enjoyable? Sounds way off in the future but the Internet of Things is already here. Twice as many things are connected to the Internet as people.

  • Meta Search Turns 14 in Marketing: Travel on 01/02/2014

    With so many people talking about meta search these days, you would think it was a brand new digital marketing channel. Not so, as SideStep and FareChase got the ball rolling in the travel sector in early 2000. I remember helping SideStep set their first advertising rate card a couple years later. I also recall that GDS companies and OTAs were a bit scared of these new kids on the block at first. Many of the travel suppliers were in "talk to the hand" mode for the first few years which looking back now seems unbelievable. Some people predicted that meta would replace traditional OTAs which is funny considering that Expedia just invested $632 million in Trivago.

  • Social Media Treat Without The Tricks in Marketing: Travel on 10/28/2013

    Even though I used to enjoy a little "Mischief Night" when I was much younger, I've decided to keep this article on the treat side. Social media can give you tons of treats and benefits if you know which pitfalls and tricks to avoid.

  • Why Your Travel Company Needs To Jump On The Convergence Analytics Train in Marketing: Travel on 07/30/2013

    What if you could actually know which of your marketing efforts really drove bookings regardless of where they booked? Yes you probably currently know how many people clicked on your digital ad and eventually booked on your website. But think about how many other scenarios you are missing. Most people never click anything but were influenced by your ads. Some people still call or book in person after being exposed to digital marketing. Others might get interested in your travel product after a live event, print ad or TV spot. So they start offline and then months later they end up booking online.

  • Travel Like A Native ... Advertiser in Marketing: Travel on 04/30/2013

    Everyone is talking about native advertising these days as the hot new trend. Since there are so many different flavors of native, I thought I should start with some broad explanations and examples. Native advertising is when an advertiser publishes or sponsors content as part of the user experience. So instead of running banner ads around the editorial content, the brands actually weave their content into the site. Native can be a video, photo, infographics or a text article. An advertorial could be native. Facebook Sponsored Stories and Twitter Sponsored Tweets are also a form of native. When an advertiser adds value and provides interesting, unique or funny content for the user rather than simply shoving marketing messages down their throat, that would be native.

  • 10 Easy Email Secrets For The New Year in Marketing: Travel on 01/29/2013

    Email marketing yields one of the top returns on investment. According to MarketingProfs, every dollar spent on email returns $40 compared to keyword ads at a $17 ROI and banners way down at $2. Yet, I have seen too many travel RFPs that only focus on display while skipping email. I have also seen too many campaigns that were well funded and somehow could not afford to produce one HTML email creative.

  • Social Media Generates Bookings And ROI  in Marketing: Travel on 10/30/2012

    Everyone agrees that social media is important and on the rise. But I still come across so many skeptics on a weekly basis when it comes to getting support for social media providing a strong return on investment. Maybe some of these impressive stats will help convince those naysayers.

  • Why Google Analytics Should Be Outlawed In The Travel Industry in Marketing: Travel on 01/30/2012

    Over my 20-year career in the travel and Internet industry, I have come across hundreds of cases where a travel client has used Google Analytics (GA) to track their clicks from their online advertising and seen major discrepancies on the clicks and conversions. We should all agree as an industry to put this behind us and not use GA to track clicks and bookings.

Comments by Ryan All comments by Ryan

  • What Can Native Advertising Learn From 'Homeland' And Jason Bourne? by Ryan Bifulco (Marketing: Travel on 08/05/2014)

    Howie, thanks for your feedback. Here is the link to the report: http://www.sharethrough.com/2013/05/infographic-native-advertising-effectiveness-study-by-ipg-media-labs/ I believe we are still very early on in measuring the true effectiveness of Native as many publishers and brands are just now testing the waters. I don't think Native has failed millions of times but yes the industry still has plenty of challenges to overcome.

  • What Can Native Advertising Learn From 'Homeland' And Jason Bourne? by Ryan Bifulco (Marketing: Travel on 08/05/2014)

    Paula, yes I saw it and especially enjoyed the humorous video. I agree that news sites need to either not do native or do a much better job of alerting their users. For native to thrive it will need to add value to users which means the quality needs to improve.

  • Native Advertising Predicted To Dominate Digital In 2014 by Gavin O'Malley (Mobile Marketing Daily on 01/09/2014)

    Good info on Native. My article from April also has some great insight on Native and custom content which comes in various flavors: http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/199237/travel-like-a-native-advertiser.html

  • Managing Revenues: Not As Systematic As You Might Think by Gary Leopold (Marketing: Travel on 01/06/2014)

    Gary, great stuff as always and agree in some ways alarming. At some larger chains they do have separate ecommerce groups or distribution planning teams that take on a lot of things and free up the revenue management folks to actually forecast, overbook and optimize. But at many individual properties the rev manager has to wear a lot of hats. As a former revenue management guy, I would like to see more attention on this discipline. Marketers can only be as good as the rest of the parts in the process.

  • Marketers Struggling To Integrate Media Channels by Laurie Sullivan (Online Media Daily on 11/11/2013)

    Great article and good to see the topic brought up in general. I wrote a complimentary piece for MediaPost here with info about convergence analytics and tracking from a variety of sources: http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/205650/why-your-travel-company-needs-to-jump-on-the-conve.html

  • 10 Easy Email Secrets For The New Year by Ryan Bifulco (Marketing: Travel on 01/29/2013)

    Yes time of day is key and different for each person. Also some studies show that a shorter subject line does better so worth testing.

  • Social Media Affects Purchase Decisions, ARF Finds by Erik Sass (The Social Graf on 01/23/2013)

    Erik, great article as I'm always excited to see more research supporting Social Media since there are so many people who still doubt it. I have a few case studies and stats that further support your piece if you want to review: http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/186208/social-media-generates-bookings-and-roi.html#axzz2J0fQVf2N

  • Is It Time For The Caribbean To Have An Airline Of Its Own? by Gary Leopold (Marketing: Travel on 11/05/2012)

    Gary, great article and glad you are raising the awareness to help flush out solutions to help the region. I have always felt that there are so many amazing beaches in the Caribbean. But what sets a destination apart is their air lift and of course a little marketing magic.

  • Social Media Generates Bookings And ROI by Ryan Bifulco (Marketing: Travel on 10/30/2012)

    Guys, thanks for your comments and feedback as I do agree that social concierges have plenty of upside. In the last part of my article I too stated the positive ROI from customer service and customer engagement when it comes to social media. I also agree that if a brand is using social media as a one way channel to push sales that it will fail. But many brands do have a social media strategy and do use social media as a 2 way communication channel which does lead to stealing market share and increased revenue. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, comScore, Clickz, eMarketer, Expedia, Travel Weekly, Mashable, MediaPost, Compete, Business Insider and many others have research showing that social media produces bookings, conversions and ROI. If you have personally seen otherwise that is fine but to say that social media does not work for an entire industry is not accurate. My article was actually saying that if you only measure direct bookings from a Facebook widget then you are missing the true ROI from social media. Social should not be looked at as a separate distribution channel, but rather a part of an integrated marketing approach.

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