Let’s ask Google – How is Online Marketing Changing the Travel Industry?

Ryan Nahas

The travel industry is undoubtedly becoming one of the most fiercely competitive sectors to market online. Hotels, resorts, airlines, and travel agencies are in a constant battle to get the attention of potential customers.

online marketing

As expected, the biggest shift we’ve seen in recent years, with easier access to information, is the decreased use of a middle-man, or intermediary. Consumers are resourceful, insightful, and intelligent. They know where to look for what they want, and more and more, they trust the opinion they form themselves, rather than that of a tour operator or travel agent who, at the end of the day, is in the business of making the most money.

Content Creation and Marketing

This means airlines, resorts, and hotels are interacting directly with consumers more and more. Social networks and Google and Display ad networks are great places to provide content that can be digested online by a consumer at his or her own pace, frequency, and duration. There have never been as many routes to market. The astounding number of mediums with which a message can be dispersed.


With that in mind, photo and video advertising is on the rise as well. The travel industry is sexy. It evokes emotions of nostalgia, freedom, imagination, discovery, and wonder. Visual stimulation through lush photo and video content is an amazing way to encourage action, and give consumers an honest glimpse of what to expect when they buy an all-inclusive vacation, book a hotel, or float away on a luxury cruise. This hasn’t always been possible, but as the cost for creating and disseminating content continues to go down, this form of advertising will only continue to grow and evolve.

Social Media

I touched on the importance of social media as a tool before, but it should also be stated that engaging in online marketing via these channels allows customers to talk to you, or about you in front of a large audience. People will complain about bad service, a bad experience, or a letdown. That is inevitable, a price that comes with choosing to communicate directly with your customers in the digital world. In an industry where a sizeable portion of the investment decision is made by trusting that the seller will deliver on what the buyer is promised, this can be scary. These opportunities for PR and customer service, however, are great for transparency and loyalty. Be as honest and sincere as possible, and onlookers will appreciate any efforts to rectify the situation.

Marketing to the travel industry changes quite often. Interested in getting your campaign off to a strong start? Contact us to see how we can help make you keep up!

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