Last time, I wrote about some of the travel trends you need to be aware of over the next 15 years. These ideas came from Scott Alvis, chief marketing officer for Amadeus North America, in an article on Tnooz. He summarized how more travelers from emerging nations and continents will only increase during this time period, and that marketers will have to think more in terms of psychographics rather than demographics.
The final part of this article was significantly briefer than this previous section, but its concept is equally compelling. Alvis writes about six “traveler tribes” that fit into this new framework and how to market to these groups. These include:
• Simplicity Searchers – like to have a smooth travel planning experience with no hidden surprises.
• Cultural Purists – want their travel to serve as an opportunity to learn and appreciate another culture.
• Social Capital Seekers – desire social reward from their journeys.
• Reward Hunters – look for optimal return on investment for their travels as compensation for their busy lives.
• Obligation Meeters – only take options dictated by a stated travel objective.
• Ethical Travelers – are led by personal, conscience-drive principles when making decisions about travel.
Of course, no traveler can be categorized in a single group, and there is overlap between all of them. Plus, Alvis reiterated the need to look at these travelers through a psychographic rather than a demographic lens, as well as the coming and unseen advancements in technology and travel.
So how can you, the adventure travel marketer, meet the needs of these six tribes? Let’s take each group on one at a time.
Simplicity Seekers – Most people in this group tend to be older and want to have to someone else carry out the legwork for planning. Here, you may want to enlist the services of travel agents who specialize in adventure travel, and have these travelers come your way through those partnerships.
Cultural Purists – With many of the adventure travel destinations happening in foreign countries, fulfilling the desires of this group is relatively easy. Make sure you include plenty of enjoyable and safe activities that immerse people in the local scene. Even if you have mostly or exclusive domestic trips, you can still have your customers feel that they can experience life like natives.
Social Capital Seekers – These are individuals who desire status among their peers, especially in the social media arena. This comes from equating more travel with better quality of life. You can make it very easy for these individuals to share their vacations from you with user-generated content that can easily link up to their social media accounts and personal blogs.
Reward Hunters – Luxury travelers want to have some other benefit that comes with paying a premium price tag. This is usually in the form of wellness or other essential but indulgent experiences, such as a private safari. In adventure travel, you can offer spa and wellness tie-ins as well as luxury side activities your wealthier clients will be happy to pay for.
Obligation Meeters – This group is often comprised of business travelers and those who only have options within certain parameters. While adventure travel companies don’t often cater to this segment, the possibility of team-building trips may be something worth exploring.
Ethical Travelers – Doing the right thing is the guiding principle for this tribe. They often use their conscience to determine travel decisions, which often includes adhering to green or sustainable travel practices, as well as political viewpoint. You may want to include some activities that touch upon volunteer tourism, such as helping with construction in a village or tending to farmlands.
Essentially, this framework fits well with the latest trends for adventure travel marketing because it addresses the needs of the specialty area’s demographics. Even with Obligation Meeters, the mostly business traveling segment, marketers can find novel ways to appeal to these travelers in ways that others aren’t addressing.
What are some ways that you can use Amadeus’s travel tribes to improve your marketing efforts? Share your thoughts below!