How precision marketing can boost direct sales for airlines

by | Oct 27, 2021 | Airlines, News

Driving web traffic is a key objective for airline marketing teams. Whether using search engines, social media or display advertising, marketers are attuned to building campaigns around the concept of user intent, shaping the words and images that drive online users to visit your digital platforms. 

But too often intent is then forgotten about, with landing pages displaying a ‘one-size fits all’ approach to content and offers, prioritising inventory you want to sell, not necessarily what your users want to buy. Intent is often attributed to segments of users – not specifically understood individuals.  This is where Precision Marketing can help boost online sales for airline companies – whether it’s flight only or a holiday package. By implementing real-time personalisation throughout the site, companies like easyJet holidays have increased revenue with intelligently placed messages.

Prioritising relevance

Precision Marketing prioritises relevance – both of the product and for the customer. Whilst the term itself has been discussed since the 1850s, building on the idea of market segmentation, it is 21st century technology which has brought Precision Marketing to the level of the individual. 

Being able to collect, process and analyse extensive visitor data (including behavioural and transactional data) in real-time is key to digital companies achieving true personalisation, engaging with each customer as an individual. 

Harnessing the power of AI to provide tailored online experiences for customers, marketers are able to utilise Precision Marketing to grow ROI and enhance customer acquisition, retention and reactivation. Done well, Precision Marketing will leave your customer feeling like their chosen product was easy to find, and a perfect fit for them. 

Deep dive into customer details to speak directly with them

Whilst most marketers will be able to speak confidently about their audience, it is those who can drill into the nitty-gritty details who can speak directly with them. Crunching thousands of data points is a hugely time consuming task for a human, making real-time engagement on an individual basis impossible to conduct. Achieving this in a timely manner for your entire audience is only possible with the intervention of intelligent technology that is able to adapt to your specific needs. Machine learning driven AI can make this a reality.

AI which works in real-time can help shape your digital sales platform, so your users feel communicated with on an individual level, not merely sold to. It lets you shape relationships beyond the transactional. By building a digital relationship with each user – not just treating them like a number – you are likely to see improved conversion and a higher lifetime value.  

Technology which utilises AI can help you optimise each and every single user’s online experience. We are helping airlines and travel companies implement real-time personalisation solutions, displaying the most relevant products and promotions to each individual website visitor. Whether your users are looking for flight-only or a holiday package, how – and when – you present the choices available to them can make all the difference in securing their business. 

One example of how AI-driven Precision Marketing can be applied to your website is in the implementation of personalised search results. ​​easyJet holidays has been able to optimise each and every single user’s experience by implementing a suite of personalisation solutions, meaning the website now shows the most relevant products and promotions to each individual website visitor. Carefully-tailored messages, displayed in real-time to suit each individual user, have boosted revenues by over 5% and are providing a return on investment of more than 600%. 

Machine-Learning driven Precision Marketing can also be used to reduce churn by using targeted incentives and vouchers. The ML predicts each user’s willingness to book, based on their profile, and identifies whether an incentive is actually needed to make them become a booker. This avoids diluting revenue by eliminating likely bookers. Moreover, this churn prevention use-case can even be more targeted if used for specific products, underperforming connections or flights with low load factors. The advantages for companies are manifold, keeping users engaged, avoiding churn, steering product promotions and improving conversion. 

Another example of the value such real-time knowledge about each and every user can generate, is the AI-driven promotion of airline loyalty programmes. One of our clients was seeking to do just that – boost their understanding of their online customers in real-time, to be able to promote the most relevant benefits to individual users. Different benefits of loyalty programmes appeal to different users – whether it be a business traveller seeking a business lounge before departure or families prioritising a generous luggage allowance. They now can address each user individually with the benefits that are relevant for this specific traveler, creating a greater motivation to sign-up to its loyalty programme. 

Discover more about how technology can boost your website’s performance with our case study – or send us a note if you like to get a personal demo

Written by Andy Owen-Jones, CEO of bd4travel