UK visits to Social Networks like Facebook have overtaken visits to search engines such as Google as of May this year – scary! If you don’t engage with your customers here, you’re missing a massive opportunity.
Upstream traffic to travel agency sites via Facebook is growing at a strong rate.
Not just your website or physical store anymore Email TwitterFacebook Mobile Video Apps Re-targetingEtc etc
KLM were great at using Twitter to send out frequent updates to inform customers – sending out re-booking tips, location-specific information and links to more detailed content.They gained more than 4,000 Twitter followers in a single week. Imagine that potential for later in the buying cycle.
Ash cloud disaster affected predominantly UK airlines. Ryanair did nothing on social platforms to reassure its customers and have even officially stated that they will never do so.
When people begin the research phase for travel the first thing they inevitably turn to is a search engine.All of the above are things people start to do during the research phase.
Are you showing for the key terms in your vertical? Can you measure their contribution accurately?
Mention that there are different ways and models of allowing you to either assign value to generic terms in the form of assists, or physically re-balancing the number of brand sales to work on a first click basis.
Even if you’ve got a very disgruntled customer who doesn’t really like your brand and is making sure everyone knows that they don’t.....
If you work hard enough and give them enough reason to re-think their perceptions....
You can usually get a snog out of it.
Or if you’re really lucky.... They might marry you and turn into Brand Advocators
Don’t mess it up because people aren’t always faithful and can become divorced from your brand.Remember that people are more likely (up to 7 times) to talk about a bad experience, than a positive one – so managing these people well is key.
Facebook is building upon its premise of offering a network of trust and recommendations by allowing people to ask it a question and open it up for millions of users to answer. Currently in Beta.Make sure you are there offering tips and advice when people start asking “where should I go on my next holiday”, or “I’ve got this much to spend, where should I go?”. Don’t try to sell to people at this stage – just engage with them and make sure they know you’re there.
Remember than unless you are there during the research phase, it makes it unlikely that consumers will think of you during the purchase phase. You are also making it harder for yourself to acquire new customers in the longer term.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/travelnews/air-passenger-duty/7723276/Coalition-Government-favours-new-per-plane-tax-on-flights.html - ARIANNEClear distressed inventory – i.e. Left over seats and hotel rooms Combine the last-minute nature of such seat/room availability with the real-time features of tools like and you create the opportunity for airlines and hotels to generate moneyUnited Airlines recently launchedTwares, where it clears off seats for the upcoming weekend every Wednesday and Thursday. JetBlue’s Cheeps program works along similar lines. All it takes is to create a separate fare category in the revenue management system for such deals and have one person put them out on Twitter, once or twice each week, after looking at how full the flights are.Of course, you have to set clear expectations with your followers that the account will only be sending out deals, and is not a customer service vehicle.Ultimately, using real-time platforms like Twitter helps the airline circulate cheap fares and get people to fly more often, or even for the first time. Hotels could similarly post unfilled room inventory on Twitter. Ultimately this fills up the planes and hotels and drives more revenue.
Leveraging reviews correctly requires integrating them into the booking path when a person is searching for flights, especially at the point when the potential customer is most likely to convert into a sale — similar to how many airlines integrate selling travel insurance.The critical factor here is to be transparent about where the reviews are coming from
Easyjet have their own facebook application, that helps fans plan trips with their friends through Facebook and email. Users can coordinate destinations and dates, propose a range of budget options and then invite friends along for the tripOne step is missing at the moment - the buying stage. HOWEVER Easyjet are keen to become the first airline on facebook to enable you to use the app and book, without leaving facebook. Bringing the entire experience within facebook: more convenient option for users who will not have to create a login and store credit card information on separate sites.
On average, at least 1 in 7 clicks on your brand terms go to a competitors site Since the change to Google’s TM rules in 2008, it is even more key to protect your brand Buying brand PPC will help you more accurately monitor how generic contributes to your overall marketing mix
Note that the one correct price was for DialAFlight and since you have to phone to book, chances are that price isn’t the same as the one you’d get when you phone up.
Location is the holy grail of the mobile experience. One of the major developments this year has been the availability of free navigation systems on mobile handsets. And the way applications are mushrooming around location-based services, one can only expect more excitement in this area. What do you make of such developments from the travel industry’s perspective?Robert Hamilton: It’s an exciting time, and users are responding by generating more and more geo-tagged content across all kinds of services.The chance to include location information when commenting via services like Google Buzz and Twitter makes it easy for travellers to share experiences in situ - surfacing this kind of immediate word-of-mouth reviewing will become increasingly important.1 in 3 queries on a mobile phone has local intent, indicating a powerful desire on the part of consumers for location-specific information. Has the industry realised that focusing on location is just one of the ways to best use mobile capability to drive optimal consumer response?Robert Hamilton: I think there’s still some way to go here - there is enormous potential for travel businesses to upsell, improve check in services, sell post purchase ancillary add ons or give greater relevant information all linked to location specific information.This whole area is largely untapped and will be an enormous opportunity for brands to create differentiation in the immediate future.
Chances are, those people who come back from a trip and had a good time are going to talk about it, in one way or another. Those who had a bad experience, are not only more likely to talk, but they’re more likely to shout about it.Thank those people who loved their holidays, offer them an incentive to come back soon. Those who are complaining – help them. They don’t have to be lost customers – you can retain them by approaching them directly with an apology, a free room and asking for a second chance.Interacting with people on social platforms is resource intensive. People who complain won’t respond well to “would you turn the volume down, we can’t resource helping you” Time, Attention, Trust – making an emotional connection, having transparency and truthfulness
Manage expectations – if your response time is 10 minutes, let people on twitter know what they can expect. Customers now expect you to break down barriers, talk to them directly and publicly.If you’re not honest and transparent, expect backlash. BA do a good job with this, responding with personal, @ replies to help people out around the clockPersonalised customer service:
Maintaining guest loyalty – return on Engagement Personalise customer service, a tweet saying thanks for staying with us/flying with us speaks volumes
Who’s heard of 4sq? Who uses it? Here’s how your business can use it.Location-based retentionOffer incentives for those who check in regularly at your hotel and leave tips – retain your customers by asking them to check in for a free upgrade next time, 20% off their next stay etc. Give Mayors the opportunity to become brand ambassadors by offering them free upgradesAdds tips about your hotel – got a painting that tells a story? Include it as a tip on foursquare so that customers feel as if they’ve had personal interaction with your hotel. This ties back into the research phase – hotels offering the best Foursquare/Gowalla incentives will be more likely to captivate the attention of a friend via referral. If you incentivise existing customers to add tips, their social circle will see these tips and your strategy to improve retention has a knock-on effect in engaging those who are researching.
Good example of relationship buildingLufthansa: allows you to share your location with your Facebook and Twitter friends during the flight. Doesn’t generate revenue currently – concentrating on building a relationship with passengers using social media – not hammering them with ads
Nurture and incentivise individuals that have a good record of offering valuable advice on facebook questions, trip advisor etc.
Mention again shared background, demographics of FB friends. Friends are already pre-disposed to book with you. In the long term, not only will your customer be providing you with their own lifetime value, they’ll be bringing in the added value of new customers via their networks thereby driving down acquisition costs.Encourage those who love your brand to share the information that they love your brand easily. Incentivise to tweet, run competitions, do whatever you can do to ensure that your brand is being advocated online and you will see Advocates influencing Researchers.
Encourage those who love your brand to share the information that they love your brand easily. Incentivise to tweet, run competitions, do whatever you can do to ensure that your brand is being advocated online and you will see Advocates influencing Researchers.
TDS - The New Online Journey is Real Time
Travel Distribution Summit 2010<br />The New Online Journey is ‘Real Time’<br />Presented by Stickyeyes: <br />Heather Healy: Head of Social Media<br />Arianne Donoghue: Head of PPC<br />
Test Case<br />Ryanair: Has officially stated that it will not be setting up official social media accounts for the brand<br />.......it won’t stop people<br /> talking about Ryanair<br />
Test Case<br />People are talking about your brand whether you like it or not – engage with them and get the rewards. <br />Don’t want to bother? <br />Miss a massive opportunity<br />"Those brands that were the most engaged (in social media) saw their revenue grow over the past year by 18% while the least engaged brands saw losses of 6%”<br />
Research - PPC<br />Pick a flight<br />Compare brands<br />Compare prices<br />Choose a city/resort<br />Pick a trip/holiday type<br />Find a hotel<br />Look at insurance<br />Investigate transfers/car hire<br />Pick a destination<br />
Research - PPC<br />Are you showing for the key terms in your vertical?<br />Can you measure their contribution accurately?<br />
Research: Social Media<br />Use social media monitoring tools to find people looking for a holiday<br />“where should I go on holiday” “can anyone recommend a cheap airline to France?”<br />Track keywords and approach people directly with a discount<br />
Buying - PPC<br /><ul><li> Do you own your brand in PPC?
Are you making your offering as competitive as possible?
Are you able to cater for the growing number of potential mobile purchasers?</li></li></ul><li>Buying - PPC – Owning your Brand<br />Key Facts<br /><ul><li> On average, at least 1 in 7 clicks on your brand terms go to a competitors site
Since the change to Google’s TM rules in 2008, brand protection has become more key
Buying brand PPC will help you accurately monitor how generic search contributes to your overall marketing mix</li></li></ul><li>Buying - PPC – Owning your Brand<br />Keyword: “Princess Cruises”<br />Are you letting other people talk about your brand?<br />
Buying - PPC – Owning your Brand<br />Site Links<br /><ul><li> Utilising site links will help increase your branded CTR
You can take up more real estate, pushing competitors down the page
You can choose which deep-links Google display</li></li></ul><li>Buying - PPC – Real-time Pricing<br />Only 1 of the 7 prices shown here was correct<br />Real-time pricing makes you more competitive and ensures all clicks you receive are qualified<br />Pricing in ads = GREAT<br />REAL-TIME Pricing =PRICELESS<br />
Buying - PPC – Real-time Pricing<br /><ul><li> Develop a simple tool that can feed into the API or find a provider with a ready made tool
Stickyeyes have built a feed tool that puts real-time numbers online in 4 minutes
Maintain the history and stats associated with your ad
Retention - PPC<br />Would you speak differently to a prospect than you would to an existing customer?<br />Increase retention and fuel your buying cycle by showing specifically targeted ads to groups of users who have previously visited your web site.<br />
Retention - PPC<br />Purchase: Add to Existing Customer Target Group<br />Visit: Add to Prospects Target Group<br />User is recognised across networks and is shown specific display or text ads<br />“20% off your first stay!” <br />“Free upgrade on your next purchase!” <br />
Retention - PPC<br />Use Remarketing to cross-sell your other services.<br />Target people based on where they have travelled, or how frequently.<br />Test showing different messages to people who entered your sales funnel vs those who didn’t.<br />The better you can segment and target your customers, the higher your ROI will be.<br />
Retention: Customer Service<br />Use Social Media Monitoring tools to: <br />Capture those who are negativeabout the brand and help them, they don’t have to be lost customers<br />Capture those who are positiveabout the brand and thank them<br />
Retention: Customer Service<br />Customers expect you to break down the barriers...<br /> they expect a “B to Me” approach.<br />Don’t want to give it to them? Expect them to go elsewhere. <br />
Retention on Social Platforms<br />Use location-based social media to incentivise return visits, provide Daily Specials, identify those who are staying regularly and make your hotel about its customers<br />
Advocacy<br />Those who advocate your brand on social platforms will guide their social circle towards a positive experience with your brand<br />Those who research will reach out to their most influential peers for advice<br />
What’s Next?<br /><ul><li> Check your Brand PPC
Ensure you are showing for the key terms in your vertical
Make sure you have an attribution model of some kind