Email Goes on Vacation

No, it’s not out of office—email is headed out on a road trip. Load up the RV, buckle up, and please keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle.

The travel industry faces a unique set of challenges with email marketing. Below, you’ll find five points of interest to note—and for a comprehensive look at email marketing in the travel industry, download The Travel Company’s Guide to Email Marketing. Our latest research piece is written specifically for travel marketers, featuring stats and observations to help you optimize your email program. The gas tank is full, and your trip begins now.

1. Sea of Subscribers

Subscribers who sign up for travel related emails want deals and promotions, and more than 80 percent opt in for that very reason. But subscribers don’t necessarily know exactly what they want, because 36 percent of travel subscribers report that email has led to a purchase that wasn’t planned. So what does that mean for you? Give subscribers what they ask for, but leave room for deals and specials that might entice subscribers to clear their schedules. And of course, test, test, test.

2. Read Rate Ravine

Travel related emails fare slightly better than the norm when compared to all industries. But don’t get overconfident, because the delete before reading rate is also slightly worse than average. Your subscribers know what they want and when they want it—but might not indicate to you what that is. Our advice? Look to engagement and segmentation to determine what to offer your subscribers.

 

3. Mailbox Provider Pass

And speaking of engagement, certain mailbox providers have higher inbox placement than others for travel related emails. Engagement for some mailbox providers is the biggest indicator of subscriber interest—and the algorithms do evolve over time and vary by mailbox provider. Review your data to see which mailbox providers make up your list, and plan accordingly.

4. Lifecycle Ledge

Travel is a unique niche of the email world. Although you can plan for welcomes, confirmations, and reminders to check in, your subscribers might book a trip last minute—or book so far in advance that your confirmation email sits in their inbox for several months. To maximize engagement (and repeat business), consider the different purchasing patterns and subscriber personas that your brand sees often.

5. Share City

Whether it’s a family vacation or a work trip, there is a high likelihood that your subscriber will want to share the information about a trip with someone. In what formats does that happen? Review how your subscribers currently share—whether it’s itinerary detail or a stay confirmation—and think about what, if anything, you can do to improve the end user experience.

Ready for the next leg of your journey?

Email is the leading marketing channel for travel marketers—and for good reason! Email allows marketers to reach globetrotting customers with ease, no passport or unique country code required. Your next stops? First, download The Travel Company’s Guide to Email Marketing for industry specific data and use it to inform your email program. Use it as reading material for your own road trip!

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Casey Swanton and Laura Christensen discuss tactics and benchmarks for the travel industry in this upcoming webinar.

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