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Traveling With Searches: Become A Brand Without Borders

Some 44% of travelers search the Web to get product information and reviews on their smartphone, whereas 35% do the same on their tablets, according to a whitepaper from iProspect, a Dentsu Aegis company. I start travel searches on my laptop and transition to a smartphone when on the road, making purchases on the iPhone when necessary. The whitepaper takes marketers through cross-media campaigns.

International business travelers are twice as likely as the general population to admit being comfortable receiving online ads, according to the iProspect Going Global: The International Business Traveler. They are more likely to engage with digital media than vacationers, affluent population, or the general Internet population. In fact, 71% seek out ads related to clothing and fashion; financial services; luxury goods and products; and technology such as gaming, mobile phones, and electronics.

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Most are not shy when it comes to making online purchases. In fact U.S.-based outbound business travelers spent $111 billion, 6.4% YoY growth, in 2014, compared with the prior year, per the United Nations World Travel Organization, Tourism Highlights, 2015 Edition.

International travelers are also socially active online, and about 50% more likely than the general population to use the Internet to connect with family through devices and technologies such as Skype and FaceTime.

The iProspect report also makes recommendations on how to connect with international business traveler. The agency's in-depth analysis of preferences and behaviors suggests channel-specific tactics to define and optimize the most relevant and appropriate strategies. These strategies are not only applicable to brands in the travel and hospitality space, but also relevant for global luxury, retail, finance, and technology brands.

During the planning phase of the trip, increase awareness of the brand so the traveler considers the products in their trip experience by introducing the brand by associating it with the person's trip itinerary.

Build paid-search campaigns to drive traffic to the brand's site. Provide answers by identifying the key questions international business travelers ask. Determine the relevant questions and buy related paid search keywords. Prioritize mobile paid-search and ensure the campaigns land in one of the top two positions for specific keyword searches. Allocate some spend toward identifying travelers and their lookalikes, prioritize them in savvy ways, and then reengage them with relevant ads after their trips.

The white paper also offers a variety of tips for cross-channel campaigns into display and social for both desktop and mobile. iProspect also suggests buying banner ads on destination-specific or lifestyle digital publication Web sites. Consider those that cover travel, business, art, charity, fashion and style, cooking and city-guides. Develop consumer-targeted buys by identifying trusted networks or private marketplaces that segment these travelers or look-a-likes and place banners on sites frequented by your target audience.

Don't stalk the traveler, (that's just too creepy) but during the trip create opportunities for in-the-moment brand experiences in the city or the airport the international traveler visits. Build a long-term relationship once the traveler returns home. Growing brand affinity through relevant interactions will increase the likelihood that the brand becomes part of the consumer's daily experience.

The consumer study in this white paper was conducted via Consumer Connection System and has over 34,500 respondents in the United States. The study featured 1,131 U.S. respondents represent 9.6 million people in the United States and all indicated that they regularly travel abroad as well as travel more than 2-times annually for business. iProspect uses the insights from CCS to fuel global consumer focused performance strategies.

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