Millennials? The Time Is Now! – Part II

trypSo how does one reach and influence their travel decisions?

1. By Being Authentic

If your message remotely resonates like typical advertising, you’re out.

An honest approach will be the way to go, so instead of “hiding” your flaws, try to highlight them in a creative and original way. Sounds like terrible advise? You’ll be surprised on how well they react to it; plus, they’re far away from looking at utter perfection, they’re way more interested in what is real and unique.

2. By Keeping it Informal

Address them in a friendly and conversational way, always!

Avoiding superlatives overuse and scripted communication is a must, since it reads being sold to.

3. By Truly Interacting

They don’t want to be talked to, they want to be part of the conversation, so make sure that it’s not just an unidirectional process.

Involve them in your marketing processes by asking of ways of improving your business and things they would eventually like to change; this way, there’s a pretty solid chance that they’ll reward you by passing along your message to their social media networks.

4. By Being Sensitive To Their Budget

They are extremely pragmatic in their purchase decisions, and cost plays a huge role in their travel choices.

Appeal to their bargaining side; extend free upgrades and amenities such as Wi-Fi; loyalty programs are also a great tool.

5. By Making Things Happen FAST

Fast beats friendly any day of the week for them.

Optimize the online booking process before they lose interest and move on.

Provide a check-in kiosk in the hotel lobby complimentary to the traditional reception.

Create a sense of urgency by providing offers that must be redeemed in the same day.

man-using-stylus-pen-for-touching-the-digital-tablet-screen6. By Reaching Them On Their Terms

This basically means, wherever they happen to be at the moment, and whatever the device.

7. By Making It Personal

They’re quick to dismiss any information they don’t deem as relevant to their needs.

Use whatever data you have on them to design tailored messages and offers that may be of interest.

Speak to them in their native language and don’t even consider delegating this crucial task to translation services.

8. By Monitoring Your Online Reputation

If the experience and/or service are sub-par, expect to read all about it online.

Monitoring websites like Yelp or TripAdvisor can help you encouraging positive reviews, while mitigating the damage from negative ones.

9. By Promoting “The Experience”

Always think in terms of the overall experience, rather than the product.

They tend to care more about the spiritual satisfaction, rather than accommodations.

Inspire instead of just selling and tap into their natural curiosity about discovering new people and cultures.

Talk to them about making memories they can share with friends, either as travel companions or via social media.

10. By Keeping It Consistent

Their various devices are merely seen as different ways of accessing the same information.

If you want to keep your business top of mind with them, you’ll need to think exactly that way.

Promote a consistent conversation at all times, regardless of whatever the channel is being used.

You can and should optimize for different devices, but the underlying message should remain consistently the same whether delivered via smartphone, tablet, laptop, desktop, or on site at your property. For instance, never pitch an online promotion and then have a different one in place once they arrive at the hotel desk.

11. By Connecting With Causes

PGAV Destination reports that 77% believe destinations should address causes they deem important.

They’re particularly fond of the idea of contributing to something greater than just their personal satisfaction.

To be successful, though, cause marketing must go beyond being a marketing ploy and be perceived as truly genuine.

12. By Connecting Them With One Another

A social media mindset makes connecting with others, whether in the digital realm or the real world, extremely relevant.

Encourage them to share their experiences with others and get them talking about you, rather than just listening to you talking to them.

Social media is all about sharing and the modern version of word-of-mouth advertising, making it by far more effective that a one-way communication.

vettaFinal Considerations

Over the next 5 to 10 years, this emerging market will become the lifeblood of the travel and leisure industry, so NOW is definitely the time to forge long lasting relationships, while they are still establishing brand preferences and solidifying travel habits [research shows that 47% are more likely to engage with brands they have a previous history with].

Traditional approaches are “destined” for failure, so don’t even think about marketing to them in the same ways you’ve marketed to the generations before.

Your approach should be way more informal, less commercially driven, and much more about befriending; in fact, they actually find the idea of marketing “per se” as objectionable. They don’t want to be blatantly sold to; they want to informed.

They engage with Brands is pretty much the same way in which they engage with their friends, sharing info about their purchases and experiences through social media, so the ultimate goal is to find ways of making your destination or property relevant and worthy of conversation.

Since they put tremendous emphasis on customer experience, make sure yours lives up to their expectations.

Encourage repeat business and longtime loyalty by focusing on consistent delivery of quality experiences – on their terms, not yours.



Bruno Santos
Account Manager | HDS – Hotel Digital Strategy

Bruno Santos


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