Travel companies urgently need to create relevant experiences for each and every customer. Now there’s a solution that makes that happen, fast.
Last time round, I introduced a new concept: ‘Frictionless customer conversations’, which looks at how travel companies can capitalise on the surge in popularity of messaging and chatbots to get closer to their customers. The watchwords for success? Consistency, value, personalization and seamless experiences.
These watchwords don’t just apply in messaging, of course. They’re at the heart of what travel companies need to be doing across every channel. And with OTAs taking a bigger and bigger cut of the travel bookings market, this matters more than ever.
Thanks to technologies becoming so intrinsically integrated into consumers’ lives, there’s more scope than ever before for businesses to develop hyper relevant, personalized relationships with individual consumers tailored to their unique technology ID.‘Get to know me’, one of the trends in our Accenture Technology Vision 2019, looks at the huge opportunity companies in every industry have to learn more about each customer and connect with them.
For travel companies, it’s a high priority. Right now, three out of four customers feel that only a handful of travel companies really excel in relevance. And remember, they’re shopping around more than ever. Six out of ten will switch providers if they’re not getting a relevant experience from them.1
Hyper relevance, why it matters and how to achieve it, was a central theme at the Digital Travel APAC event in Singapore at the start of April. During the conference, I gave a keynote presentation ‘Creating Adventures in Realtime: How to deliver near real-time, context-driven and personalized experiences’ highlighting the importance for travel companies of providing personalized experiences and adventures to their customers – before, during and after the trip.
Getting to hyper relevance faster
That theme tied directly to an exciting new solution launch at our Singapore Innovation Hub. We invited 40 travel executives along to experience our fully-working Personalization Accelerator for Travel, a set of capabilities we’ve developed to ensure companies in this industry can realise the benefits of hyper relevance much quicker than they’d normally expect.
To bring the solution to life, we created ‘Flyou – the hyper relevant digital airline’. And to ensure the whole experience was immersive, we gave our Hub a makeover, transforming it into Flyou’s elegant business class lounge.
By configuring a number of scenarios and personas, in marketing and operations, we demonstrated what hyper relevance means in action. Here’s a few examples. Using the Flyou app, a customer inputs their spec for a forthcoming trip: “Where can we take the kids on a holiday that’s fun and relaxing?”
Powered by our accelerator, Flyou’s personalization accelerator immediately generates some destination recommendations and the booker selects the one that matches her requirements. She books the tickets and, ahead of their holiday, Flyou prompts her to select some ancillaries from a range of options tailored to her family: inflight meals, seating, kids’ activity pack, extra luggage, airport pickup and so on.
Keeping everyone happy
It’s super quick and easy for her to select the ones she wants. She’s also keen to plan an action-packed trip while the family’s away. Flyou’s personalization accelerator knows where they’re going, their passenger details and how long they’re away. Using that information, it suggests some personalized itineraries that’ll keep everyone happy.
She selects the ones she wants and books them through Flyou’s app, checking out user recommendations as she does so. Once they’re at the airport, Flyou sends a text alert to her phone about a last-minute gate change. Minimising the hassle, and knowing the family’s travelling with young children, it offers to provide a transport buggy to get them to the new gate in time.
There’s more, of course. This is just a snapshot of what an airline like Flyou can do using our accelerator. The bottom line? Hyper relevance is achievable and it’s a game-changer for the industry. The beauty of it all is that, using machine learning, Flyou’s personalization keeps on getting smarter. That means the recommendations it makes get more relevant with every interaction.
Next up, I’ll be on stage with one of our hotel clients at Skift Forum on 27 May. If you’re planning to be there, it’d be great to meet you.
And if you’d like more info on the Accelerator, or want to discuss any of the points I’ve covered in these blogs, please get in touch. Thanks for reading.