We shift our clients away from an advertising-first position and create brand impact through product, service, and/or experience innovation that advances the narrative and drives visitor yield.
For travel clients, our work is to take more ownership of visitor data so that we identify a belief, value, or need about the audience that has not yet been leveraged and use that insight to influence the path to booking journey. Ultimately, we turn insights into business opportunities for the destination and weave it as part of our brand strategy, which can be translated in a number of ways, including new destination experiences, targeting new audience segments, or aligning with a cultural movement, for example.
We unlock growth for the destination by pursuing untapped audience segments that could drive incremental visitor growth whether that be multicultural, LGBT, families or millennials, or by passion point (i.e. recreational sports, adventure, culinary, etc.) But it’s not as simple as just adding new audiences into an existing marketing plan. Genuine insights need to first be discovered, preferably what’s not common or have not yet been exploited. As an example, it’s already known that African-American travelers are a growth market and present significant opportunity to increase visitor yield. But the real insight is in discovering what’s unique about this audience’s decision making behavior and how they’re influenced to make travel decisions.
We know that it’s not enough to just deliver analytics or data, and that our clients need the answers that the analytics provide. As a key foundation of brand planning, our objective is to line up genuine insights with actual business outcomes that we can improve or impact. For our travel and hospitality clients, this means translating qualitative and quantitative research such as brand audits and visitor studies into creative plans that will impact RevPar, spend per stay, occupancy rates, visitor yield, and other key KPIs.
There’s a notion that advertising is a tax you pay for a lack of innovation, and we believe this to be true. We challenge ourselves to help destinations do it the Amazon and Red Bull way by shifting our clients away from an advertising-first position and instead investing in innovation and experience transformation, which can include developing new destination assets or enhancing the customer experience. We believe this to be the most sustainable approach to adapting to shifting consumer demand and traveler trends and strengthening a destination’s competitive advantage.