All over the world, popular destination countries are embroiled in political conflict. Economic downturns in Europe and Asia also add to this feeling of global uncertainty.
This turmoil has caused a reduction in luxury travel participation over the past year by 1 percent. While that number might not sound like a lot, it adds up quickly when discussing ultra-wealthy clientele who collectively spend several millions of dollars on travel a year. To accommodate their financial and safety concerns, your marketing approach should be adjusted accordingly.
This maxim applies especially in today’s precarious global economy. Highly affluent consumers are becoming more conscious of their spending. While this trend does not mean that they are slashing their disposable income allotments, it does mean that they are more cautious when it comes to purchasing travel-related goods and services.
Now more than ever, your brand will have to demonstrate the value of your product. Rather than giving discounts, simply increase the offerings they will get for the same price. Add-on services such as concierge free-of-charge indicate the opulence of their available lodging as a measure of added value. Take any opportunity you have to appeal to their sense of cost-consciousness without coming across as pandering or desperate.
Make Peace with Tradeoffs
Since affluent travelers are being far thriftier, they are less likely to spend money on services that they feel are not necessary. Many are seeking cheaper ways to travel, but still desire a luxurious four or five star hotel once they arrive.
Come to grips with the fact that you will not be able to sell every upgrade or add-on your services offer. Instead, communicate the value of the ones that are still desirable. You will waste less effort and speak more to the sensibilities of your clients.
Appeal to Timeless Qualities
Many of the zones that are currently experiencing conflicts are also home to some of the most recognizable landmarks and picturesque settings imaginable. Currently, the media has caused these typical associations to be shoved aside for anxiety-inducing imagery and narratives of danger and uncertainty.
Break away from these narratives by reminding clients that there is still much to see and do in these destination spots. The temporary setbacks are a flash in the pan compared to the amazing sites that Mother Nature and ancient civilizations can provide.
Obviously, you will not want to encourage clients to visit clearly dangerous countries, but places like Thailand and Greece can be safely enjoyed as long as your clients stick to main destination areas and employ appropriate measures.
Since certain places on the map are completely off limits, such as Western Africa and Syria, try to tap into associations that these places have for destination travel aficionados. For instance, large swathes of Turkey located far from the Syrian border can offer a similar historical and cultural experience.
Spread your bets by targeting demographics that are more likely to embark on journeys. While American spending has decreased this past year, Western European travel is actually on the rise. Wealthy millennials these days are also more likely to travel abroad than their parents’ generation.
Adventure travel is another sector of the market that is accustomed to placating their fears. They often skirt past dangerous zones in favor of the natural splendor available just a few hundred miles away.
These techniques can help your brand work within the concerns of your clients in order to provide a safe and memorable experience. Remember to be flexible when it comes to destination choices. Emphasize the timelessness and value of the products and services you offer.