In just four years Millennials, or people born between 1977 and 1997, will occupy almost half the global workforce according to Harvard Business Review. Hoteliers need to gain an understanding of this new brand of traveler now. Here are three ways to attract Millennial travelers.
1. Optimize your site for mobile.
Millennials are the biggest users of the mobile internet. A 2012 Google study found that a bad mobile website is the #1 deterrent to booking travel on a phone. Slow load times, small links that are hard to tap, and hard-to-read pages all lead to a frustrating mobile experience.
By re-directing mobile users to a mobile-friendly website, you can optimize your user experience. This can help you capture more direct bookings.
Another benefit of creating a mobile-optimized site? While Millennials dominate the mobile market, smartphones and tablets are becoming more popular with Gen X and Baby Boomers every year. By creating a mobile-friendly website, you can capture even more of the growing mobile market.
2. Strike the right tone on social media.
97% of Millennials use social media while traveling and three quarters post to social networks at least once a day. There is huge opportunity on social media to connect and develop brand trust, if you have the right messaging.
“More than any other generation that precedes them, Millennials have a strong disdain for the traditional sales pitch,” says John Bonini, Marketing Director at IMPACT Branding and Design. “They value conversation. Think walkie-talkie over megaphone.”
For example, Visit Croatia and Tourism and Events Queensland use hashtags on Instagram to leverage their fans’ content. The Four Seasons Hotel and Resorts engages with fans on Facebook, whether to provide information, thank guests for sharing content, or address criticism. This strategy serves to offer value, develop a relationship with past and potential guests, and highlight the experiences that each location has to offer.
3. Manage your online reputation.
According to a 2014 Ernst & Young report, Millennials are less likely to complain in person and more likely to post negative feedback online. They are also more likely than older travelers to look for opinions online while researching a prospective vacation. So, potential guests see feedback on social media or review sites at a crucial stage in the booking process.
This is where Revinate’s Online Reputation Management platform comes in. ORM aggregates all online mentions of your properties, from TripAdvisor reviews to social media and blog posts into one place, so hoteliers can easily monitor and respond.
57% of users agree that seeing hotel management responses to a review generally “makes me more likely to book with a hotel versus a comparable hotel that didn’t respond to travelers.” With Millennials, online engagement is especially important.
Want more information? We’ve got best practices on Responding to Online Reviews and Creating a Social Media and Reputation Management Action Plan. Or, if you’d like to learn more about Revinate’s Online Reputation Management solution, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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