Market Focus: Reaching Travelers in the U.S.
U.S. residents logged 1.7 billion “person trips” for leisure travel purposes and 455 million person trips for business purposes in 2015. The sheer volume of U.S. travelers represents a huge opportunity for travel marketers across the spectrum, from airlines to hotels to car rentals and car services.
One of the more efficient and high impact ways to reach these travelers is through direct marketing; namely third-party email, direct mail and, in some cases, by phone.
These tactics provide marketers with a tough-to-beat combination of audience selection benefits:
- Nearly unbeatable precision to select exactly the right individual travelers to receive the marketing message;
- The ability to test at small (inexpensive) quantities; and
- The option to roll out at high volumes if a formula is working.
That’s the good news. The challenge, at least in the US, is finding which audience sources are the best choices for a given campaign. This is a nontrivial task, since there are more than 30,000 separate consumer direct marketing audience sources and 20,000 B-to-B audience sources in the U.S.
Data Sources on Travelers
Below is a high level summary of the available audience options for the Travel category, developed by Infocore’s Audience Analyst team. The analysts identified eighteen categories into which Travel-related consumer audiences can be classified for use by travel-related marketers.
Each category contains two to forth two separate audience groups quantified in the bar graphs below. The largest sized group is referenced on the far right table (“Maximum Audience Size”) and specifies the maximum number of individuals reachable in the largest audience group in a category.
As you’d expected, many U.S. travelers fall into more than one category: When traveling with kids, the focus might be on beaches or holiday travel, whereas couples on a getaway trip might be more focused on international destinations or adventure and eco travel. As such, note that these categories and quantities are not mutually exclusive.
What marketers tend to like about data like this is that they can choose their message recipients with real, hard data about vacations they’ve taken in the past, or are planning on taking in the future. And to further segment their audience selection, marketers can refine those choices and elect to only reach males or females, or those in very specific geographies, within identified household income ranges, or with or without kids.
Reaching Those Travelers
Like any industry, it pays to work with experts and professional buyers who understand the nature of these audience sources and, through experience, how to discern those that may be ideal for a given campaign. This is especially important given the vastness and complexity of the U.S. data market.
This kind of high quality data is typically priced on a CPM (cost per thousand) basis, which varies from $100 to $300 per thousand. Prices depend on the volume of records being acquired, the precision of the selection criteria, and the contact media being used – e.g. postal records are less expensive than email records.
And for those of you wondering whether it’s legally permissible to send prospecting emails to people who haven’t opted in for your messages, fear not. This third party email approach was specifically designed to lawfully reach only consumers who have agreed to receive messages from third parties.
To get the full, free US Travelers Audience report, contact: USTravelersReport@infocore.com.