TTME JULY 2018-PG 9

Digital marketing setting the trend

Digital marketing strategies are known to drive more business in travel, tourism and hospitality. Salah Mustafa, Digital Marketing Director, Wego, ensures that travellers are kept abreast with the latest trends of travel.

TT Bureau

How important is the digital marketing strategy in today’s context for travel and tourism?

More than ever before, MENA consumers are relying on brands’ digital messaging to guide them through purchase journeys. At Wego, we advise travel service providers and destination marketing organisations to adopt a 360-degree approach, engaging users at different stages of the purchase funnel, across various channels such as performance marketing, social media, native and content marketing. Brands should also adopt a solid user segmentation strategy for optimal budgeting and marketing communication to stay relevant and capture the attention of new-age travellers. More so, as businesses are looking to cut costs, strategic digital marketing offers a costefficient way to expand audience base and geographical reach.

What are the new findings from this part of the world?

What do the users require?

The sales volumes of the ecommerce industry in the Middle East is expected to hit $4.3 billion in 2020, according to a report by BMI Research. This statistics shows a real appetite in the region for shopping online, be it for fashion or travel. Interestingly, mobile traffic has rapidly overtaken desktop for internet usage, creating a mobile-first generation of shoppers. This is where Wego comes in to provide a portable shopping experience to the user.

Has social media become an accepted norm in the corporate field?

Social media seem to be driving customer behaviours. About 48 per cent consumers are seen to be engaging actively in online promotions through social media while a large subset of consumers use these platforms to read product reviews. Keeping with this customer behaviour, at Wego, we utilise our social media channels to engage with travellers across the globe.

What are the latest trends in travel and tourism?

User generated content, video content and localised content appear to be the biggest digital media trends in the travel and hospitality sector. To that effect, we recommend that hotels, OTAs and airlines boost audio-visual content promotions and also encourage guests to share their authentic travel experiences online.

What will be the future of digital platforms?

In the next two to five years, promotions for travel brands will become far more localised. We also see real potential for disruptive technologies such as big data analytics, AI and IoT to help deliver top-notch travel retail experience.

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