With rising waves of COVID-19 across the world, the travel and hospitality sector is once again facing complex travel barriers and severe concerns for business plans. Despite a brief moment of reassurance with vaccines’ arrival, the industry still lacks a large pandemic plan. To overcome the challenges bearing out of the pandemic, the industry needs to understand the changes in customer behaviour during the outbreak and become aware of new tastes and dispositions that may become permanent.
Marketing segmentation methods can help identify new customer segments in the travel and hospitality industry. Essentially, it is a customer-centric approach that combines products of interest for consumers. These adaptations are designed to accommodate the unique characteristics and behaviours of a single class or group.
Here we tell you the new travel and hospitality customer segments to focus on.
Companies in the travel industry can also do their small customer analysis to understand changes during the pandemic and provide practical strategies and plans for each specific category.
Periodic Holiday Travellers
Periodic Holiday Travellers are one of the most sought after customer segments in the travel and hospitality industry. These customers are relatively indifferent to safety or budget, and even when they consider a new travel destination, the vacations and travel continue to happen regardless of the goal. Business’s existing strategies and motivations might still work to cater to these travellers’ needs, but new safe innovations can help them lead this segment better.
Health and Safety Conscious Travellers
This group of travellers has a bad rap for businesses and start-ups in the travel and hospitality sector. These current customers continue to spend on travel and accommodation but at a lower level. Impediments like long haul flights, traffic, reports of pollution at domestic or short-haul destinations, etc., deter these travellers from their journey and spending on travelling resources. If this segment does not feel encouraged and confident to resume travel at the pre-pandemic safety levels, their travel habits and consumption rate may decrease significantly, therefore hurting businesses.
The Expected Increase in Hardbound Travel Enthusiasts
This customer segment of the travel and hospitality market consists of customers expected to respond safely and continue their traditional travel and lodging methods. These reactivated customers had lapsed due to stringent safety protocols earlier but reverted to an imagined holiday experience in the face of lockdown conjecture. These travellers will also explore their options of travelling through new sources and businesses – come what may. Discounts, rewards, premium services and incentivisation on the business’s end can help renew loyalty well after the pandemic ends.
Renewed Criteria for Targeting Travel Sites
When selecting the accommodations, sights and destinations for the travellers’ itineraries, the marketing mix components are expected to be considered by travellers in a post COVID world. For the selection of hotel accommodations, the most relevant attributes that people might look at are the physical environment, price, safety and adherence to protocols, and people.
What should Travel and Hospitality Start-ups watch out for next?
For companies in the travel and hospitality sector, the customer bases and segments mentioned above can provide valuable information for planning future business strategies. Companies in the travel industry can also do their small customer analysis to understand changes during the pandemic and provide practical strategies and plans for each specific category.
It is now clear that the pandemic will continue to intensify over the coming months, and the response from countries and consumers will continue to vary as well. As a result, people’s outlook towards travelling can change from time to time, and therefore, travel and hospitality business strategies need to be reviewed regularly to monitor the progress, or decline, of the industry.