To thrive in today's environment, tour operators must embrace the mobile marketing revolution and put it to smart use. The smartphone is key to understanding how today's traveller plans their trips, from inspiration, planning, booking, booking through to the enjoyment phase and finally sharing their opinions, at the heart of a new leisure travel consumption ecosystem.
Technological changes are strongly influenced by user behaviour. Therefore, the players that adapt best to the changes will have a bright future in a highly competitive market. Most tourism providers are channelling these trends, improving their operations to provide a better customer experience, key nowadays for an informed, connected and increasingly demanding consumer.
This needs to include text messaging or chatbots, location-based social media, quick response (QR) codes and ad-hoc apps that notify of delays, cancellations and changes to certain services. In short, why mobile marketing is important for the travel industry.
1. SEO remains vital
SEO is more alive than ever and in the mobile environment it has a specific weight of great importance. Some aspects to take into account are the following:
- Responsive websites.
- Having a mobile-friendly version of the website improves the user experience and reduces the bounce rate.
- Enable dynamic service.
- The dynamic service allows a server to detect the type of device accessing the web and load the appropriate content at that URL.
- Keyword and content optimisation.
- A suitable length for mobile devices must be achieved.
- Let's not forget that space is limited and the reader's attention span is decreasing.
2. Incentives through social networks
The average user spends 80% of their time on social media when connecting via mobile. Being active on multiple platforms is a great way to stay connected with potential customers. Businesses in the industry can use these channels to encourage users to register, post photos or leave relevant comments. Restaurants, hotels and other players can offer discounts if a user leaves a comment on Facebook, uploads an image on Instagram, or retweets a post on Twitter.
3. Augmented reality as a differentiating element
Augmented reality gives travellers the opportunity to plan their trip in a transparent and interactive way from their mobile device. The options are limitless: take a virtual tour of a hotel room, explore menus by interacting with the gastronomic offerings, and review amenities such as swimming pools and spa facilities. It is a technology that facilitates decision making and helps differentiate the brand in saturated and competitive niches.
4. Google Ads for greater reach
With Google Ads you can promote your own apps or target campaigns by mobile device. This is highly effective, as it allows you to segment and reach really interesting audiences. Using long tail keywords with low competition and a device bidding strategy is a winning bet.
5. Demand for off-line functionalities
Providing offline services on mobile devices has become increasingly important. For industry players, it is essential to think of specific offline actions that help solve specific problems. For example, hotels can provide a detailed destination guide or an interactive map of nearby attractions. Assessing customer needs helps to devise valuable pieces of content or off-line mobile applications.
For Ángel García Butragueño, Co-Director of the BRAINTRUST Tourism Barometer: "Users use their smartphones for an average of 7 functions on their trips, reading news, looking at maps, consulting opinions, shopping and participating in social networks, etc. Everything on the road is mobile. These devices can cover all the processes of a trip and it is up to companies to establish competent marketing strategies, anticipating trends by offering extraordinary services".
According to José Manuel Brell, Co-Director of BRAINTRUST Tourism Barometer: "The impact of mobile devices on the travel industry is not only felt in the increased speed and convenience of accessing vital travel information; it is also felt in interactive applications such as augmented reality and gamification, which are becoming increasingly important for new travellers.
At BRAINTRUST we can help you create the strategy that best suits your needs. We have the best means to advise you in the configuration of value propositions that will increase your sales.
Do you want detailed information? Contact us and ask for our Tourism Barometer, the methodological support that determines the market's willingness to travel, as well as the trends that allow all suppliers in the travel industry to identify business opportunities and adjust their offer to consumers' preferences.