Five things to know about cross-channel marketing in travel
Customer experience and continued engagement have always been a pre-requisite in the global airline industry.
While in the past, airlines have accomplished customer delight through loyalty programs, the digitally connected world today presents manifold opportunities to maximize customer so-called “life time value”.
With a maze of online – offline touch points and personalized experiences that customers have grown to expect, customer delight has taken on a whole new meaning and hence the need for a renewed cross-channel marketing strategy with data at the crux.
Here’s an example:
Ben looks for flights to Amsterdam on an airlines desktop website and then drops off.
Later, as he browses a news website on his phone he notices an ad offering great discounts for flights to Amsterdam.
He clicks on the ad to complete his bookings. Ben has used two devices from search till purchase.
He may have interacted with the airlines through other touch points like a kiosk at the airport, loyalty program, past bookings etc. which means that Ben could be scattered all across the airlines customer data base.
In the absence of a cross-channel marketing strategy, the airlines will know Ben as:
MOB123 on mobile, USER001 on the desktop and TBXYZ on the tablet.
The airlines also knows Ben’s email id as email@example.com, submitted by him during one of his flights.
The challenge for most airlines today is joining these dots and connect MOB123 – USER001 – TBXYZ – firstname.lastname@example.org to understand Ben better and offer him a continued brand experience across devices and channels.
The need for a cross- channel marketing strategy?
There are many reasons:
· Creating personalized experiences spanning across channels tops every marketer’s wish list and rightly so. Pertinent cross-channel messaging is essential to establish a connect with customers in a crowded digital space.
· Happy customers = loyal customers. A satisfying end-to-end experience guarantees repeat bookings and airlines will know this better than anybody else? While loyalty programs and coupons are designed to promote repeat purchases, personalized attention to customers can do wonders in terms of boosting loyalty.
· Understanding your users better will help you understand your business better. For example, once the user behavior data across channels has been aggregated the airlines might realize that the most searched route has very few flight options while a less popular route offers too many flight options!