Advertisers, wake up! Millennial tourists are different.
We know that you have been focused on getting in front of the millennial market for a while now, to such an extent that advertising has, according to some reports, started to feel over saturated across all mediums. In fact, experts have argued that the mass marketing to millennials has underpinned Gen Z’s rejection of traditional advertising. And while advertising millennials may feel crowded, there is significant upside for savvy brands who target this audience effectively. So how do we do it? Target the traveling millennial.
Millennials, while being a buzzword, represent the nation’s largest generation and the majority of these people are now entering their prime earning years, which often translates to their prime spending years too. One thing that we are increasingly seeing more of, is the millennial traveler. Obsessed with seeking out new experiences, a penchant for overspending on their lifestyle – including food, wine and shopping – and a willingness to go further afield than their parents when travelling has made this generation a prime sector for advertisers to target, especially during the holidays.
So how do brands target the traveling millennial? What are they looking for?
Be where they are!
When millennials travel it is often planned in a relatively ad hoc fashion. They don’t plan their adventures months in advance, they often turn up in cities with little to no plans of what they want to do when they get there. The one thing the majority do book before they arrive however, is their hotel. Millennials rely on their hotel for insights and guidance on what to do once they get there.
Hotels are increasingly integrating opportunities for advertisers to reach the millennial tourists in a way that feels educational and informative. To be effective in hotel advertising, one should be positioned as a value add for the tourist – whether that be with a special for that guest or showcasing a unique venue they may not have known about otherwise.
It’s got to be digital
Hotels have transformed the way they cater to the millennial tourists by modernizing the facilities they are promoting to this audience. Sleek interiors, seamless check-ins and outs with beautiful software, fitness centers where a giant screen guides you through yoga, and a digital concierge – aka Porter24 screens – in their lobbies that guide guests on where to go and what to do. Almost every touch point in a hotel now, in the common areas, in their rooms and in fact on their own personal devices through push notifications once they log on to the free Wi-Fi, is digital. Which means that brands’ ads need to be digital too.
You’re in their “home”, give it a personal touch
Ads in hotels should be personalized for that hotel and the guests they attract. Every guest has different interests and Millennial tourists are no exception to that: some visitors are looking to shop up a storm or others are looking to get pampered in spas. Some people want to dine in Michelin starred restaurants, while others might prefer street food. Porter24 sees guests having a stronger connection with brands who localize their ads and offerings. For instance, if you are advertising in a Times Square hotel you will tweak your message in a different way to the ad you will serve up in the boutique hotel in NYC’s fashionable Meatpacking district. To increase your chances of conversion from a hotel, it is important to work with a provider who will also help make your brand stand out by limiting the number of competing businesses in the same vertical that as yours at any one time.
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in November 2018.