We’ve written before about how important it is to tailor your marketing efforts to the specific audience you’re trying to reach. The same advice applies when you’re putting together luxury tours that are meant to appeal to high-end travelers who are looking for premium experiences.
But before you can put together an effective marketing campaign, you have to understand who this market is and what they are looking for when they travel.
Although having a large (or unlimited) travel budget is part of what defines the audience for luxury tours, budget is really just the beginning. There’s much more that you need to know about this type of traveler’s needs, wants, and desires in order to market to them effectively.
For starters, they tend to be over the age of 30 and established in their careers. They value travel and for the most part, don’t fly by the seat of their pants when on holiday. They plan their trips ahead of time and make a point of creating an itinerary that maximizes their time and enjoyment. In other words, they don’t want to be stressed out or waste time making on-the-spot decisions.
Along with convenience and comfort, novelty is right up there as a top priority. This type of traveler is often looking for memorable experiences that go beyond the ordinary and average, and that are prime for posting on social media. And they don’t typically go for large-group excursions. It’s private and small-group experiences, all the way.
What does all of this mean for your marketing efforts?
When you’re looking to position your tour and activity company within the luxury market, it’s essential to cultivate an air of sophistication and exclusivity. This means that your messaging and branding has to communicate quality, comfort, convenience, and coolness. Anything that looks cluttered, busy, or low quality in any way will instantly turn off your prospects.
Here are the key notes to strike when gearing your tour offerings for the luxury market:
As we touched on above, luxury tour guests are drawn to exceptional experiences, and there are lots of ways to incorporate this into your marketing. For example, include visuals of your offerings and amenities — whether they are a deluxe yacht for transportation or five-star food and beverage — that paint a clear picture of just what qualifies your tour as “luxury.” And be sure that your wording is also on point by using evocative words and phrases such as “elegant,” “exclusive,” “chef-created,” and “first-class.”
Affluent travelers tend to prefer personalized services such as one-on-one tours with local guides, private excursions, and customizable itineraries, so be sure to feature these coveted offerings prominently in your marketing campaigns.
Crowded tourist destinations are a huge bummer for travelers of all types, and many luxury market tours address this specific pain point. If your tour offers exclusive access to spaces and activities that aren’t open to the general public, make sure to highlight this in your marketing materials.
If you don’t have a superstar in-house marketing team, then it’s worth considering splurging on a top-flight branding and design agency. This will ensure that your marketing campaigns will have the right look and feel to capture your target audience’s attention and resonate with them.
Once you’ve figured out the content of your marketing campaigns, it’s time to decide where you’ll run your ads. A standard approach to choosing the right marketing channels involves figuring out where your target audience spends their time, and then making a point of developing a presence there.
For luxury tour operators, a good bet is high-end publications that cater to affluent travelers, such as Travel + Leisure, Elite Traveler, and Conde Nast Traveler. Running an advertisement in their print magazines or on their websites (or both) is a powerful way to get the attention of your target audience.
Remember, too, that exclusivity is an important aspect of tapping into the luxury market. People like to feel that they’re being let in on a well-kept secret or a hidden gem, and you can use this to your advantage when marketing.
For instance, you may wish to consider striking a deal with influencers for sponsored social media posts about your luxury tours, whether it’s on Instagram, Facebook, or another popular platform. This type of marketing is increasingly popular in the digital age and a great way to connect with your audience beyond the typical advertising channels.
Providing a luxury tour experience begins from the very first moment your prospective clients reach out to you. Make it easy for them to say “yes” to you by delivering an experience that exceeds expectations right off the bat, whether they reach out to you by phone or, more likely, by visiting your website.
Remember that your online presence is part of your overall marketing strategy. Your homepage, just like your ad campaigns, should communicate luxury and exclusivity at a glance with breathtaking visuals and carefully crafted copy. It’s also crucial that your website is easy to navigate and allows your prospects to easily find the information they’re looking for, such as the details of your tour packages and your booking page.
Speaking of your booking page, it’s the final step in closing the deal, so you absolutely don’t want to drop the ball here. Make sure your booking process is simple and easy to use — an online booking software system like Junglebee can take the stress out of the experience, both for you and your clients.
Although breaking into the luxury market may seem daunting, it’s no different than effectively marketing to any other target audience. The key is finding out what drives and motivates this type of traveler and then adjusting your marketing to speak directly to them and their needs, wants, and desires.
Reach out to us to find out more about how Junglebee can help you position your tours for the luxury market and increase your bookings.