MERCURY csc              THE GEOTRAVELER              An Introduction to the Most Active              and Influential Cons...
”I think travel should be a full-body experience— that we ought to observe and absorb the natural  world, the culture, the...
Definition of Geotourism                   ”The Geo-traveler is concerned with preserving a                   destination’...
Who are the Geotravelers?                   • Estimated to be between 55-59MM U.S. Geotravelers                       and ...
Travel is not something they do...   Travel is who they are.                       PAUL L. DINEEN                         ...
Desire for Connection                          AUTHENTICITY                   PERSONAL               SHARED               ...
Personal Awakening             ”I think that a good trip is a relaxing one,           but a GREAT trip is often in part, m...
Shared Humanity                  ”Though this last trip wasn’t pretty,                        the expressions of sympathy ...
Authenticity               ”Then he took me to meet his wife and           family and have lunch. At one point he had     ...
Forces of Change                   1. Desire for personalization                   2. No time                   3. Economi...
Essential Truths                 +   Forces of Change                 =   Geotraveler Trends                              ...
Geotravelers and the                  ”Post/Lingering Recession”                   • 89% anticipate taking the same or mor...
The Geotraveler’s Dichotomy                   • Craving Authentic Connections & Destinations                     vs. Socio...
Insights for the Travel Marketer                   We hold our research accountable to three criteria:                   •...
Decision-Making Criteria for                  Geotraveler Purchases                   •   Connects me to a passion        ...
Successful Communication Principles                  To Engage the Geotraveler                   •   Tell your story, fran...
Looking AheadAs more travel brands and destinations enter into thecompetition for the world’s tourism activity, we believe...
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Intro to the Geotraveler

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Some market research and introductory information about the Geotraveler, an emerging and important segment of the travel and outdoor industries.

Travel is not something they do. Travel is something they are.

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Intro to the Geotraveler

  1. 1. MERCURY csc THE GEOTRAVELER An Introduction to the Most Active and Influential Consumer in Travel
  2. 2. ”I think travel should be a full-body experience— that we ought to observe and absorb the natural world, the culture, the language, the local arts — with curiosity and respect.” — Hayden MERCURYcsc
  3. 3. Definition of Geotourism ”The Geo-traveler is concerned with preserving a destination’s geographic character–the entire combination of natural and human attributes that make one place distinct from another. They are interested in both the cultural and environmental concerns regarding travel as well as the local impact tourism has upon the communities and their individual economies and lifestyles.” — Geotourism Study, NatGeo and TIA, 2002 © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  4. 4. Who are the Geotravelers? • Estimated to be between 55-59MM U.S. Geotravelers and growing • Median HH Income is $70,000 USD • 20% have HH Incomes above $100K USD • Average age is 48 years old • 44% have traveled internationally in the last 3 years • Take 30% more trips than other travelers • Are early adopters and influencers over other segments within their primary area of passion-travel © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  5. 5. Travel is not something they do... Travel is who they are. PAUL L. DINEEN © 2012 © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  6. 6. Desire for Connection AUTHENTICITY PERSONAL SHARED AWAKENING HUMANITY THE CONNECTION THAT MAKES THE BEST TRIP FOR YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE © 2012 © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  7. 7. Personal Awakening ”I think that a good trip is a relaxing one, but a GREAT trip is often in part, miserable –like a birth of sorts. In 2002, I took a trip to TImbuktu. The journey was brutal, but something broke inside me that needed breaking. Years later–I am still trying to sort out that journey in my soul. And I am hungry for more experiences of that kind.” — Brooke (Brooke) On the Sahara © 2012 © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  8. 8. Shared Humanity ”Though this last trip wasn’t pretty, the expressions of sympathy offered were deeply humanizing and a reminder of why one should stop out of one’s own front yard and immerse oneself in the unpredictable and receptive and surprisingly tender world.” — Liz (Becca) Young Masai Chyulu Hills Village, Kenya © 2012 © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  9. 9. Authenticity ”Then he took me to meet his wife and family and have lunch. At one point he had an all-out fight with his daughter right there at the table! It was so quintessential Italian. Hands flying, voices raised and family, the heart of it all.” — Becca © 2012 © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  10. 10. Forces of Change 1. Desire for personalization 2. No time 3. Economic squeeze 4. Pervasive technology 5. Accessible luxury 6. Desire for a healthy planet © 2012 © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  11. 11. Essential Truths + Forces of Change = Geotraveler Trends 1. Desire for personalization • Rise of the expert and local expertise 2. No time AUTHENTICITY 3. Economic squeeze • ”Done in a day” 4. Pervasive technology • Multi-dimensional trips 5. Accessible luxury • Return of camping 6. Desire for a healthy planet • Culture closer to home PERSONAL SHARED AWAKENING HUMANITY • Self-directed travel planner • ”Softening” of adventure travel • Importance of localization THE CONNECTION THAT MAKES THE BEST TRIP FOR YOUR • Increased interest in TARGET AUDIENCE sustainable travel options © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  12. 12. Geotravelers and the ”Post/Lingering Recession” • 89% anticipate taking the same or more leisure trips in the coming year • Many are traveling closer to home with a shorter window of planning • Reconnecting with traditional activities such as camping, baking and gardening • Mindful and attracted to simplicity, have already adapted to the new era in which the U.S economy is emerging • Focusing their real spending on elective consumption of meaningful goods © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  13. 13. The Geotraveler’s Dichotomy • Craving Authentic Connections & Destinations vs. Socio-Environmental Consciousness ” What is an ethical traveler? I could go back and forth on this for a long time, weighing the impact versus the benefit of quality cultural exchange with unintended negative impacts on a culture and the landscape. All of this against the backdrop of urgency to visit these cultures and locales before they are lost to the mass consumer culture.” — Brooke © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  14. 14. Insights for the Travel Marketer We hold our research accountable to three criteria: • Insightful • Identifiable • Actionable The true measure of our research comes from its ability to close the gap between left brain logic and right brain creativity to produce successful marketing and communication campaigns. © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  15. 15. Decision-Making Criteria for Geotraveler Purchases • Connects me to a passion • Provides a high degree of utility • Makes me unique • Saves me time • Gives me knowledge or expertise © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  16. 16. Successful Communication Principles To Engage the Geotraveler • Tell your story, frankly • Inspire your tribe • Localize as much as possible • Convey your expertise • Integrate mindfulness & sustainability into the business itself © 2012The Geotraveler MERCURYcsc
  17. 17. Looking AheadAs more travel brands and destinations enter into thecompetition for the world’s tourism activity, we believe the mostsuccessful brands and destinations will position themselves tofind more Geotravelers, not just more travelers.If you are interested in learning more about our research andhow the Geotraveler can elevate your brand, please contact us: Alexi Huntley Khajavi Director of Global Strategy alexihkhajavi@mercurycsc.com 406.922.2298 © 2012 MERCURYcsc
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