It’s not an easy time to be a travel brand, but marketers are hoping that pent-up demand, coupled with the flexibility of new work and school structures this fall, could lead to more bookings. To that end, several brands are unleashing fresh marketing this week.
Some of the new work acknowledges that few are traveling at the moment, but that demand is still present for future trips—when restrictions lift. Other work hits on how new lifestyle arrangements could lead to more domestic travel by car, for example. Earlier this week on the “Marketer’s Brief” podcast, Jen Young, co-founder and chief marketing officer of RV rental site Outdoorsy, said that bookings for roadtrips are on the rise, a trend expected to continue through the holidays.
The new commercials follow a steep decline in ad spending by travel brands amid coronavirus lockdowns and consumer safety precautions. Travel and tourism brands spent $1.9 billion on ads bin the U.S. between January and June of this year, a drop of 54 percent over the same period last year, according to Kantar. However, demand picked up a bit in the summer months, according to Kantar, which noted in a recent report that during the week of July 27, 74 percent of consumers said they are more likely to avoid non-essential travel, compared with 87 percent the week of April 3. In addition, consumers clicking on paid search travel ads is also on the rise—Kantar reports that such clicks rose 800 percent from April through July as consumers shopped online.
Travel brands are hoping to get their business, or at least remain top of mind when travelers do decide to book.