Viewpoint: Hotels, Guests Shift to Behavioral EAdvertising - By Charles Deyo

Imagine a highway billboard that automatically changes its message depending on the interests of each driver passing by.

Cendyn That magical process is happening online today through the latest advances in audience-targeting advertising technology.

Now, imagine you found an online ad for a destination resort, and clicked through to the property to check it out and verify availability but did not book a room. The next day, while tracking your stock quotes, you see another ad for the same property, perhaps with a special offer or incentive, and this time you click to make a reservation.

Welcome to behavioral ad targeting, a trend that has changed online advertising more in the last two years than in the previous decade. Hotels and consumers both benefit.

In the past, ad networks blasted out millions of impressions with very little understanding of the audience they were reaching. And most consumers simply tuned them out as irrelevant. .

Today, sophisticated audience targeting ad technology “decouples” consumers from travel-related site content. It anonymously categorizes each individual into groups based on their online behavior. With this approach, a hotel buys an audience, not space on a travel-related site.

Relevant, high-value ads can follow a set of anonymous behavior criteria regardless of where the individual goes online. Travel sites are part of the mix but the campaign reach is significantly extended by including lifestyle, news, entertainment and general interest sites.

What makes this happen?

Behavioral technology that builds anonymous, information-rich profiles about consumer categories - what websites they visit, what they shop for, what they search for online, what type of ads they respond to - makes this happen.

Our own company has access to over 200M of these profiles that we can segment based on behavior, allowing us to reach the travelers who are most likely to book

Hoteliers also have the ability to manage all online advertising channels on a single platform. Media buying, ad trafficking, reporting and analysis are done centrally through a single platform that enables a holistic view of their online ecosystem.

So if your hotel company is running a blend of display banner ads, paid search, natural search, and e-mail, you gain economies of scale and greater efficiencies. You can look at and optimize each channel based on audience behavior.

You can also view total conversions and see what type and percentage of media influenced them.

One resort company we work with has a dozen primarily destination properties, many of which earned the AAA Four-Diamond rating. They recently used our platform for an audience targeting campaign and realized a 17:1 return on investment. Over a 90 day period, they received over $1 million in revenue and:

  • 41M impressions,
  • 11K clicks,
  • 704 booking conversions,
  • 273 wedding RFPs, and
  • 70 meetings RFPs.
And that is during the current economy.

Charles Deyo is president of Cendyn, a full-service interactive sales and marketing agency whose solutions are used by over 9,000 hotel and travel destinations worldwide.


Robin Deyo
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Phone: 800-587-0975 or (561) 314-3212

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