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Targeting the Traveler: What Drives Travel Decisions

Travel Planning - Customer InsightsPlanning decision drivers vary widely depending on the purpose of travel and the age/life stage of the traveler. So how do you create messaging, content and promotions that will resonate with millennials, families and retirees?

To gain insight into travel planning needs, Cision Global Insights aggregated, segmented and analyzed 1.7 million social media posts from key forums, review sites, blogs, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter that appeared between June 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015.

Cision’s latest report, “Planning Travel: What Drives Decisions,” shares insights on how age, the type of trip, season and other factors influence travel decisions.

Some key takeaways from the Cision study included:

  • Price is clearly the top travel planning driver across all audience segments.
  • Travel planning typically follows a seasonal cycle, with upticks in planning discussion occurring in winter months and the vast majority of posts focused on booking summer travel.
  • Word-of-mouth is vital to several groups, including families, and reading reviews is a key part of their trip planning.

Want to expand your audience? Find out the best ways to target these three groups of travelers:

1. Millennials

Traveling alone is often seen as a rite of passage for millennials, one of the first opportunities for them to establish their independence. Millennials, more than other groups, are generally very technologically savvy, and tend to use their mobile devices constantly during travel.

Tip: Marketers should target millennials via mobile devices and ensure that their technological services, such as Wi-Fi, are top quality.

2. Families

Just as the definition of family has changed, so have families’ travel preferences. There is no one-size-fits-all message that will attract everyone, but there are certain concerns and characteristics that most families share. Cision’s study found that families are most concerned about price, since they are often paying for multiple airline tickets, meals and hotel rooms.

Tip: Travel providers should emphasize the incredible value of their products and services to appeal to a wide range of families.

3. Retirees

People are living longer, giving them plenty of time to seek out new activities and interests in their retirement years. Retirees have the freedom to travel at any time, and often take advantage of last-minute deals. While retirees are adventurous in their travel interests, they are also concerned about safety.

Tip: Some, who may have declining physical abilities, seek out advice from travel providers for traveling safely.


About Michelle Vangel

Michelle Vangel is an Insights Vice President within the Cision Global Insights (CGI) group. Michelle has nearly 20 years of experience helping global Fortune 500 enterprise clients derive actionable insight from media intelligence. She started her career in traditional media research, and then moved into helping clients leverage the power of social intelligence to achieve business results. Michelle has led innovative global programs helping clients make data-based business decisions.

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