Why Snapchat Launched Dynamic Travel Ads

Why Snapchat Launched Dynamic Travel Ads

Snapchat

Just in time for a crazy 2022 travel season, Snapchat has introduced Dynamic Travel Ads. This ad unit was developed for airlines, hotels, online travel agencies, and tours. It’s the first time Snapchat has introduced a category of Dynamic Ads outside of eCommerce. The ad unit comes at a time when the travel is roaring back from a slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a Snapchat blog post, 76 percent of Snapchat users in the United States are making plans to or already have returned to their pre-pandemic behaviors, and Snapchatters are more likely to travel than users of other platforms.

What Are Dynamic Travel Ads?

Dynamic Travel Ads are a form of Dynamic Ads that Snapchat launched in 2019. Dynamic Ads make it possible for businesses on Snapchat to automatically create ads in real-time based on their own product catalogs. Dynamic Travel Ads, per se, allow a business to upload a travel-specific catalog or feed, and dynamically serve up relevant trip information to users, based on an individual user’s travel preferences and intent.

Dynamic Travel Ads offer the following features:

  • Customized Catalog setup that’s built to meet the needs of travel advertisers with different product attributes than traditional eCommerce advertisers.
  • Advanced audience targeting based on a Snapchatter’s intent to travel to specific destinations.
  • Locally-relevant campaign delivery to serve relevant trip details based on popularity, leveraging Snapchat’s visitation data.

Snapchat says that this ad unit delivers benefits such as:

  • Reach a broader audience of travelers. The ad unit should help businesses find prospective customers who are interested in traveling, and who may or may not have been to a company’s site or app before. With Snapchat’s machine learning and product ranking capabilities, businesses can serve relevant ads to users based on travel interests, preferences, and popularity of listings and destinations.
  • Drive bookings. Businesses can dynamically retarget users who have been to their site or app before with hotel properties, destinations, or flight routes that are most interesting to them. With locally-relevant retargeting, a business understand where its customers are looking to travel and serve them properties within the area to increase ROI.

The Gen Z and Millennial Connection

According to Snapchat, Millennials and Gen Z – which comprise the majority of Snapchat users — are leading the push toward Dynamic Travel Ads. Snapchatters are 37 percent more likely to book travel after seeing an advertisement. This avid travel audience actively uses location-based features such as:

  • Location Data: Snapchat captures Snapchatter visits to more than 30 million unique places (locations of interest) in the world.
  • Snap Map: the Snap Map reaches more than 200 million Snapchatters every month. More than 70 percent of Snapchatters use the Map because they like to see where their best friends are and what they are doing. Nearly six out of 10 say that the Snap Map helps them find their best friends when they are out and about.
  • Places: Snapchat has added more than 49 million places to the Snap Map, which features stories, hours, reviews, and delivery options for local businesses.

Travel Ad

And it’s no wonder that Gen Z and Millennials are such an important audience. This generation is fueling the rise of the entire travel industry. Travel is roaring back following a difficult downturn, and even though the industry is battling a personnel shortage and inflationary pressure, travelers are going full steam ahead with domestic and international adventures.

Success Stories

Snapchat shared examples of businesses benefitting from this ad unit. For instance, Booking.com used Dynamic Travel Ads in order to dynamically pull images directly from its product catalog and serve users ads with locally relevant listings based on products they had already viewed. This helped Booking.com unlock an incremental audience, resulting in a 20 percent lower cost per purchase than other U.S. advertisers. Etihad Airways was able to reduce its cost per flight search by 4x with Dynamic Travel Ads. Additionally, the business saw a 307 percent increase in return on ad spend and a 76 percent decrease in cost per purchases, compared to its non-dynamic campaigns.

What Businesses Should Do

At a minimum, travel brands should become more familiar with Snapchat and its audience before trying ad units.  Start with the creation of a Snapchat Public Profile (similar to a Facebook page) to understand how to interact with Snapchat’s audience. And understand how the Snapchat audience interacts with content. According to Snapchat, its user base has these characteristics in common:

  • 150 percent more likely than non-Snapchatters to prefer to communicate with pictures over words.
  • Four times more likely than non-Snapchatters to gravitate to immersive video and mobile games, including augmented reality experiences.

If your brand already rocks Instagram with visual content, chances are you are well positioned to succeed on Snapchat. If you are on Snapchat already, it’s worthwhile to try this new ad unit as part of your paid media strategy. True Interactive can help you.

Contact True Interactive

Is Snapchat a good partner for your brand’s reach? Contact us. We can advise. Learn more about our expertise with social media platforms here.

How to Market to Gen X

How to Market to Gen X

Advertising Branding

Generation X is often overlooked as businesses focus on the surging Millennial and Gen Z populations. Moreover, squeezed as it is between two massive generations — Boomers and Millennials — Gen X has sometimes been mistakenly viewed as being small in size, ergo less powerful. But Gen X still comprises a large segment of the population, and Gen Xers possess spending power. What sets them apart from other generations, and how should brands market to them online?

Who Is Gen X?

The fourth-largest U.S. generation behind Millennials, Baby Boomers, and Gen Z, Gen X encompasses Americans born between the mid-1960s and 1980. And Gen X is projected to surpass Baby Boomers in size by 2028.

What Are Some Notable Characteristics of Gen X?

Gen Xers have a reputation for being hard to pin down. This is perhaps because there’s a split in the generation, with older Gen Xers possessing some of the characteristics of their Baby Boomer forebears (digitally savvy, but not born into digital the way subsequent generations have been), and younger members of Gen X displaying Millennial tendencies (their mobile usage is similar to Millennials, for example). Moreover, this is a generation that prides itself on individuality — which can make it challenging for brands hoping to hone in on a “type.” But common denominators still exist across the generation, namely:

  • Reliance on digital. Even after seeing a television commercial or print ad, Gen Xers tend to turn to the internet to perform further research. And they love social media; a whopping 95 percent of this generation engages with Facebook.
  • Brand loyalty. Small Biz Technology notes that Gen Xers are likely to spend more on brands that “give back.” And according to eMarketer, when Gen Xers develop an affinity for a product, they are willing to pay a premium.

How Should Brands Market to Gen X?

What is the best way for brands to reach out to Gen X? We recommend that you:

  • Understand where they live online — and meet them there. As noted above, Facebook is popular with Gen X. So is YouTube. Paid advertising works, of course. But brands might also create content that draw Gen Xers in with educational information or even nostalgia  — because every generation loves a little throwback. In the case of Gen X, there’s a rich vein to mine: the 1970s, with all the possibilities that era represents in terms of pop culture, music, fashion, and more.
  • Offer rewards, coupons, and loyalty programs. This is a generation that remembers the Great Recession, and doesn’t have faith that Social Security will be around when they retire. And as noted earlier, they shoulder some debt. Reach out with opportunities to save, and this generation will listen.
  • Do good. As noted above, Gen X responds to brands that demonstrate a commitment to society or the environment.
  • Understand that for Gen Xers, status is less important. This is a generational feature that Ford Motor Company figured out years ago. As far back as 2016, Omar Odeh, a Ford Explorer marketing manager, observed to Forbes, “[Gen Xers are] less likely to have to put their wealth on status. They don’t necessarily have to buy that premium brand. They will look at value for money and performance.”
  • Think mobile. According to eMarketer, 88.5 percent of this generation use smartphones. Reach out to this group through mobile devices, and make sure your website is mobile-friendly.
  • Keep communications short and to the point. Immersed in raising kids and building careers, this generation puts a value on time — and has little patience for perceived time-wasters.
  • Give them some love. According to Big Commerce, 54 percent of Gen Xers “are frustrated that brands constantly ignore them.”

Contact True Interactive

How can your brand resonate with Gen X, that most elusive of generations? Contact us. We can help.

Photo by Eric Nopanen on Unsplash

Research Shows That Having a Strong Social Media Presence Pays Off

Research Shows That Having a Strong Social Media Presence Pays Off

Facebook

Having a strong social media presence pays off for your brand – literally. That’s what research from Sprout Social shows. Sprout Social surveyed consumers and social marketers between February 28 and March 4. As reported in Mobile Marketer, the survey reveals:

  • Nine out of 10 people purchase from brands they follow on social media.
  • Seventy-five percent of people have increased their spend on companies they follow on social. That’s a 12 percent increase from 2019, a leap that’s particularly noteworthy given the COVID-19 pandemic.

Moving Forward

These findings validate what we wrote in a recent post: brands advertising on social media can connect with people who are willing to spend money even during the coronavirus era. Knowing this, how does a company move forward during such an unprecedented time? Here’s what we suggest you do:

  • Make sure you have a strong social media presence. As we’ve noted, use of social media has surged in the first quarter, with engagement on platforms like Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram spiking 40 percent or more — this despite, or even because of, the pandemic. In short, not only are people willing to spend on brands, there are more people on social, period. Brands that advertise on social will reach that larger audience.
  • Make sure your content is engaging, and that you engage with the audience. According to the Sprout Social report, 61 percent of consumers say that engagement with the audience is the brand characteristic that is most meaningful to them.
  • Complement your advertising with strong customer service. What does strong customer support look like now? Per Sprout Social, responding to people quickly is a strong barometer of customer service. As noted in Mobile Marketer, 40 percent of consumers expect brands to respond within the first hour of connecting through social media; and 79 percent expect a response in the first 24 hours.
  • Reach out to younger consumers in a way that matters most to them; that means a strong presence on YouTube and Instagram. Gen Z is the largest age cohort in the United States, and Millennials remain sizeable. It’s important that brands understand where Gen Zers spend their time. Right now, visual content is the key to Gen Zers’ hearts. The Sprout Social report reveals that social sharing platforms highlighting videos and photos, such as Google’s YouTube and Facebook’s Instagram, are becoming more and more popular with younger consumers. As reported in Mobile Marketer, “Almost three quarters (73%) of Generation Z said they plan to use Instagram more often, while 65% said they plan to spend more time on YouTube.” So it’s no surprise that Facebook just purchased Giphy and will integrate the business with Instagram.

Finally, make sure that you stay abreast of the various tools that are constantly made available to businesses to maximize the value of their social media spend. For instance, Google has adapted the YouTube masthead ad format for the era of connected TV.

Contact True Interactive

Eager to build a stronger social media presence? Contact us. We can help.

Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash