Currently, people in their late teens to mid 30s may be preoccupied with having fun on the weekends and either saving up for higher education or still paying back their college loans. With car and home purchases on their mind, big trips around the world may not be the priority. However, in ten years time, this group of people, otherwise known as Generation Y, will have the majority purchasing power in the travel industry according to a report from The Boston Consulting Group.
So what does this mean for companies and entrepreneurs in the travel industry? You have about five years to prep and prime your strategy to cater to these folks or risk getting tossed aside like an old school newspaper. Here is a look at what Generation Y is doing different than previous generations.
A two-way road, what is said on social media influence decision making of Generation Y and the thoughts they put on social media influences others. This means establishing a social media presence is just the beginning. Providing customer service, specials, and just general conversation with followers are ways to get engaged. Definitely steer clear of hard and cold selling, instead, focus on word-of-mouth marketing through individual tweets and likes.
A characteristic of Generation Y is a love for testing the latest and greatest as well as offering their piece of mind. So interact with them on social media by offering opportunities to test new products or submit opinions on new ideas.
When newspapers and traditional TVs are no longer the majority delivery channel for media consumption and desktop and laptop computers are no longer the majority vehicle for accessing the Internet, companies need to move to mobile to follow their upcoming biggest market – Generation Y.
The amount of actual purchases made on mobile devices may be low, but the price comparison and product research that happens before the purchase are increasingly completed on smart phones and tablets. And the crucial time to attach a product or brand to the consumer is during the research phase. For example, offering coupons readily available when a potential customer text a code to your company may win you a sale.
Overall, where Generation Y gets their information and how their buying habits are influenced are vastly different from the previous generation. For an industry that is steep in travel agents, non-transparent pricing, and hidden fees – companies need to change their strategy to keep up with the times.