Byline: Drew Bowering, Senior Director of Market Management, Expedia Group
Most of us in business have heard the old adage, “half of your marketing spend is wasted, but you do not know which half”.
We now no longer need that to be true. Why? Well, you see we used to talk about how many people are online, now we talk about how many are online constantly.
We’ve been saying that the future is mobile. Well, two thirds of all online traffic is now mobile . Mobile is not just the future, mobile is now.
My point is that with so much searching and shopping happening online, we have very specific data to understand how to target effectively, which means online marketing spend can be optimised as there is true visibility.
Expedia Group conducted a lot of research in this space, and from that we’ve identified four fundamental themes that we need to hit for online success; (1) relevance, (2) trust, (3) convenience and (4) value . By masterfully taking data and applying it to our online businesses, we can deliver on these while also eliminating wasted online spend.
For me, the first focus is relevance. It’s the theme technology has fundamentally turned on its head.
Relevance in the digital age is about identifying the correct intent in the exact moment it is intended. Put simply, the Netflix generation want it all, but they want you to find it for them and serve it up on that first page so that they don’t have to go looking for it.
Whenever you interact with your consumers online, you have to understand their needs at that precise moment or else you may end up wasting the spend you have invested to try to get that view. This is true whether this is through a marketing message, through Google search, or someone looking at a room photo on a website.
So what can we do? At Expedia Group, we’re tackling this through various ways, including the investment in technology. Specifically, data science technology.
As the world’s travel platform, our interactions with the consumer give us millions of data points that we can leverage to understand what consumers’ intent is, and how best to assist them in their conversions. We are harnessing the power of our global platform to take these millions of data points, wrap supplier tools around them, and provide insights that matter for their businesses.
In other words, we’re providing our hotel partners with value in the way that can masterfully take data and apply it to deliver relevance.
So is the implication that the world belongs to the large platforms who can access masses of data on a global scale? Absolutely not.