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Let’s talk about the challenges in the travel, leisure and tourism industry

8 Apr 2019

Posted by Callie James

We help our clients by taking the time to really understand their sector.

By attending trade shows, hosting networking events and opening up meaningful conversations, we have built our very own travel, leisure and tourism community. This means we can actively explore the challenges within the industry and also the travellers, holidaymakers and day trippers that use their services.

Here are some of the challenges they face.

Challenge One

We struggle to encourage frequency and loyalty.

Gaining loyalty is a challenge that the industry focuses on heavily. It’s easy to spot overt offerings within the industry that are used to gain frequent custom. Airlines use air miles and hotels push price guarantees. Tourist attractions tempt return day-trippers with discounted rates and leisure attractions offer exclusive perks to those with memberships. However, for most businesses, a returning customer base is more complex to achieve.

The key to gaining loyalty is about offering real value- not the lowest price. Many businesses within the industry do not take the time to uncover what is valuable to their customers.

Gaining loyalty means offering different things to different personas. For example, a business traveller will look at price but they will also value aspects such as location, connectivity and ease. To win this booking, a hotel must offer something that addresses these issues. CitizenM gets it right, offering a ‘home away from home.’ Business travellers can embrace modern living spaces with super-fast Wifi, 24-hour access to great coffee and book a purpose built room for their client meetings. These extra touches, communicated in the right way, are likely to win a booking from a business traveller over price alone.

Tailoring your approach to gaining loyalty relies on establishing an emotional connection with your customers on an individual level. It’s about connecting data and your customers and then taking the time to validate what attracts your customer to your brand in the first place.

Here at Reckless, our Strategy & Consultancy service will help you to delve deeper into your customer base. How? We actually try the experience or service for ourselves. We speak directly to the customers and ask them about all aspects of their buying journey. This enables us to create a true snapshot of the customer, their expectations and their experiences. It allows us to see if the data is correct and if it goes deep enough when it comes to offering a personalised experience.

“If a travel brand tailored its information and overall trip experience based on personal preferences or past behaviour, 36% would be likely to pay more for their services” Google/Phocuswright, 2017

Challenge Two

We drive potential customers to our site but still have a lower than average conversion rate. How can we get people to convert now and not think, later.

The first approach you might think of is creating a sense of urgency. While tactics used by sites such as Booking.com spring to mind, they, along with 5 other hotel booking sites have been given until September 2019 to end their use of pressure-selling. Instead of creating a sense of uncomfortable urgency, you should look to minimise the doubts that a potential customer might have and remove the barriers to making a booking.

There are some other areas to focus on when it comes to getting customers to convert online, you can find out more about then on our full insights here

Callie James
Posted by Callie James

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