The interest for authentic, adventurous and experiential with packaged tours is losing its appeal. Consumers no longer want to simply “take a trip” and they no longer want to have their travel plan neatly wrapped as a tour that fits all. This truly represents a transformation for the Travel Industry and it impacts just about every segment of the industry.
How do we know this is actually the case? Consumer data, gathered from social media, website analytics, traveler reviews and surveys tell the story.
According to an Adventure Tourism Market Study, co-produced by George Washington University and The Adventure Travel Association (ATTA), sales of adventure travel have grown by 65% yearly since 2009. Much of this growth can be attributed to a wider age demographic audience than has expressed an interest in inclusion of an adventure component for their travel plans. Unlike the traditional adventure travel this new trend shows travelers have an interest in a softer adventure. The study states “Nearly 54% of travelers plan to participate in an adventure activity on their next trip, compared to the 42% of travelers currently participating in adventure activities.”
According to ATTA President, Shannon Stowell, “As we watch adventure travel tourism grow, it is imperative that we continue to provide travelers with transformative experiences.”
Google Consumer Surveys and polled U.S. and U.K. adult Internet users on their travel habits. Some of the answers are instructive on what we want out of our travels.
For the U.S. and UK consumers who have traveled internationally in the last year for vacations, it is clear that overall they’re looking to travel with friends and family, as well as use local firms in their planned destinations.
In an American Express survey commissioned in 2017, consumers illustrated their demand for more enriched lives and personal fulfillment through experience and learning. Over 72% of respondents said they would rather spend money on experiences than things. Further, 88% said travel is the number one dream on their life’s bucket list, ranking higher than family or wealth.
With the continuing interest in a new form of travel how can travel marketers differentiate their product as more experiential experiences amid an increasingly crowded travel landscape?
Travel marketers must now present their travel experiences in a format that the travel consumer wants to use and on a device they use to make travel plans. Travel experiences are best presented in video format. While many travel videos can be found in the sea of video content online, the travel consumer is not seeking a travel experience that requires hours of endless searching and viewing video content that is simply a video brochure. Video content must tell your travel story, it must be distributed to a target audience and it has to be easily located and delivered on a mobile device, laptop computer or a Smart TV. That technology is found utilizing OTT, Over-the-Top video distribution. OTT allows your content to be found, viewed and purchased (directly from the video) without having to be subjected to unwanted or irrelevant video content.
Video and OTT Market Stats from 2017 tell the story:
1.3 Billion People watched video
4.7 Million Videos Streamed
64% more likely to purchase from a site with video
88.4% of digital video viewers were also OTT users. 89.3% forecasted by 2019
15% YoY OTT users growth in 2015
200 million forecasted OTT users in the US by 2019