How to Generate Real Customer Loyalty in the Travel Industry
Customer loyalty in the travel industry is not what it used to be. With increased transparency on comparative prices and easier access to booking tools, travelers are increasingly loyal to those that provide the best prices and experiences.
After attending PhoCusWright's Travel Innovation Summit in November, we noticed how appropriate the summit's theme of "cult of context" is in today's market. Travel organizations can no longer afford to be generic, or attempt to appeal to everyone. Customers expect contextual relevancy and companies are expected to deliver.
If I'm on a business or leisure trip to Asia, I probably want to know every detail about cost, flight routes, class of service, location and amenities. A few years ago, I'd have to cross-reference this information from books, websites and phone calls to travel agencies. Today I expect the most optimized solutions tailored to my individual needs. After all, in a hyper-connected world, why would I settle for anything less?
The key to winning in a commodity-based landscape is to offer a contextual experience without increasing marginal overhead or sacrificing brand equity. This sounds simple enough, and in many instances it is. Knowing where a user is going, when they're leaving, and why they're traveling is now par for the course. Matching this information with user interests remains difficult.