The Travel Tech Show at WTM – Day Four

The Travel Tech Show at WTM – Day Four

Hints and advice from online giants for established players and startups alike ran through many of the sessions at Day 4 of the Travel Tech Show at WTM 2015, the largest travel tech event in the UK.

A popular WTM-Travel Perspective session from Google UK Sales Director Dr. Bernd Fauser on YouTube held the audience’s attention with viewing demographics and the importance of video in the travel purchase.

He highlighted how YouTube reaches more ABC1s than any other online platform every month making it a dream channel for travel marketers.

Some of the top reasons people watch videos online are travel related – 27% to relax and escape, 45% to be entertained and inspired, 14% to pursue a hobby. In addition, almost 50% of travellers use online video in some shape or form before deciding where to go on holiday.

Attendees also heard how consumers are using video to make critical trip purchasing decisions – 65% when they are thinking about taking a trip, 67% when choosing a destination, 67% when looking for ideas for activities, 63% when deciding on accommodation and 26% when deciding which website to book on.

Fauser said video plays a vital role for brands because most consumers are undecided about what companies to book with and find it hard to differentiate between them.

When asked if there was a “secret sauce” for creating video he said:

“The key thing is testing and the platform allows you to do that at a really low price point. Lots of companies use it to run different spots and see how people are engaging and what resonates.”

Samir Bhana, Twitter’s Sales Manager, UK/Ireland, Travel said tweets can be more informal than traditional company communications, so travel brands should give their social media account teams more freedom to react in real time.

“We are about 20 minutes ahead of the mainstream news, so if you are on the ball, you can take advantage of that.”

At a different part of the show, start-ups were put through their paces during Digital Tourism Think Tank’s second Travel Start-up Pitch competition, which was won by JustPark, a business which helps hotels maximise the revenue from on-site parking facilities.

Anhel Alickovic, Business Development, JustPark said “There’s lots of revenue
management systems to help hotel sell rooms, we can help them sell parking spaces.”

The European Social Entrepreneurship and Innovative Studies Institute provided the prize – a mentoring cruise.

Attendees at the session were asked to vote on five different start-up pitches, with JustPark getting the highest number of positive votes. However, the other four businesses – Roomer, VoiceMap, faralong.com and TourConnect – all getting the thumbs up with more positive than negative votes.

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Almost 52,000 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international press, embark on ExCeL – London every November to network, negotiate and discover the latest industry opinion and trends at WTM.
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