Is there anyone better than travel operators to guide advertisers on how to market to a jetset-oriented audience? Kayak And Tripadvisor we relied heavily on betting that this is not the case. And according to the two travel giants, this bet is still as strong as ever.
Over the past two years, both metasearch companies have launched in-house media agencies that focus on creating ad campaign content for brands wanting to market their products to travelers.
And these brands are not only active in the travel sector.
“With the rise in demand for travel search globally, travelers have become a key audience that brands…find intriguing,” said Allan Askov Christoffersen, senior director of media and brand activations at Kayak. “They use their money to go on trips and prioritize vacations over other luxuries.”
Tripadvisor and Kayak have developed these in-house agencies, meant to complement the work of traditional advertisers, bolstered by the companies’ deep travel knowledge that informs how to attract audiences.
With travel search demand on the rise globally, travelers have become a key audience that brands (not just in travel) find intriguing.
Allan Askov Christoffersen – Kayak
The role of Kayak and Tripadvisor’s internal media studios
Kayak Media is what Askov Christoffersen calls the company’s “creative content solution” for advertisers.
“We offer comprehensive integrated campaigns to help brands effectively connect with travelers at different stages of the travel planning process,” he said.
And its clientele is diverse, including destination management organizations, hotels, airlines as well as global communications providers and apparel brands.
According to the Kayak Media website, ideas from Kayak users are incorporated into campaigns created with partners who contribute their own ideas.
Similarly, on its site, Tripadvisor claims that Wanderlab can translate “global insights into brand stories that resonate with our more than 400 million travelers worldwide, wherever they are.” Tripadvisor has worked with clients such as Cutwater Spirits, Visit San Diego and others. The content can be distributed on Tripadvisor or used on other platforms, such as a series broadcast on Amazon Prime called “The Wanderer” in partnership with GoTürkiye.
Robert Cole, Phocuswright’s senior research analyst for lodging and leisure travel, said that conceptually, agencies can offer integration with their platforms and help partners with omnichannel campaigns while offering services at scale with reach beyond what some clients are capable of by themselves as they pursue their interest in a travel-oriented audience.
“Essentially, they are designed to help organizations that sell into their markets be more successful by either a) extending their reach into new markets, b) improving their lead conversion, or c) reducing the added cost of these conversions. ” Cole said.
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The crux of the concept is public knowledge
With their experience as metasearch platforms, Tripadvisor and Kayak have a deep understanding of travelers’ needs and preferences.
“We are here to be a resource for creative agencies on behalf of their clients or advertising or marketing agencies, or public relations agencies on behalf of… clients to assist them with creative execution in the field of trip,” Ochman said.
“We understand our community. We understand the traveler better than anyone.
Kayak feels the same way about its ability to effectively reach its customers’ desired audiences. “Travelers rely on Kayak to know where to go and who to book with,” said Askov Christoffersen. “With Kayak Media’s personalized marketing solutions, we can target active and indecisive travelers and convert them into loyal customers.
Future Growth Plans
After some time of work, Kayak and Tripadvisor are ready to invest in the development of their in-house media studios.
“Wanderlab and the entire media industry are a top priority for Tripadvisor,” said Casey Brogan, Tripadvisor Communications Manager. “We know there are many more opportunities and we will continue to prioritize them.”
Brogan did not say how much revenue Wanderlab has generated for Tripadvisor or what investment in the content studio the company plans to make in the future.
But the first year provided plenty of learning opportunities, according to Ochman, and he expects the growth to continue.
“I think it’s going to be because of that test and learn process, and we have a year of learning under our belt,” he said. “It will also become more innovative. It won’t be (innovative) for the sole purpose of creating something cool. This will be an impactful innovation in which we address a need in our community that is at the cutting edge of technology. And again, maybe it’s (artificial intelligence), maybe it’s just a new way of building a voice campaign and maybe it’s a new experiential activation.
The last year at Kayak Media – its second year – was all about growth, according to Askov Christoffersen, noting that Kayak Media was looking to expand its client portfolio, marketing solutions and services and overall business growth.
“Kayak Media will continue to contribute to Kayak’s multifaceted business model by meeting demand from our partners, further engaging with our travelers through storytelling, and leveraging our powerful data and insights,” said Askov Christoffersen.
And it’s important for Kayak Media to keep tabs on travelers’ preferences, he said, noting that it’s “crucial” to continually update how they hold their audience’s attention. He added that Kayak Media plans to meet travelers wherever they are, whether on social media, video content, through artificial intelligence, etc.
Despite companies’ positive feelings about their internal media projects, Cole expressed skepticism about its ability to drive conversions.
“I see some experimentation, but OTAs and metasearch players – and, to be fair, most travel providers as well – have yet to crack the code to effectively converting travel spend focused on inspiration directly into monetized booking conversion,” Cole said.
There’s a lot of what Cole calls “spray and pray spending” in the travel industry. “The ones I see performing best have a strong foundation in tracking performance metrics and the ability to run multivariate testing to identify the best performing creatives and campaigns against specific market segments and personas of travelers. »
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