How a European marketing venture designed to capture prospective customers in the dreaming stages of their booking journey became an international lead-generation hub for Choice Hotels Europe.
Presented with tightening budgets, little brand awareness and siloed marketing teams focused on driving business from and to local markets only through traditional media, Choice Hotels Europe faced the ever-growing need to become digital.
In response, it has launched Travel Top6™, a content marketing platform designed to capture the attention of cross-market, prospective customers in the early stages of their booking journey, and in turn, lower the cost of customer acquisition.
In the USA where the company dominates a third of the mid-market, Choice Hotels is a recognised name with online search volumes allowing digital marketing efforts to better capitalise on branded campaigns.
In Europe however, to compensate for the lack of market penetration, Choice Hotels Europe has focused efforts on driving engagement at the top of the funnel, by placing customer-interests at the forefront.Not only is Travel Top 6 (TT6) a pan-European platform opening the doors to capture new business opportunities across other markets, but it also a hub of inspiration, aiming to ignite and excite the passions of prospective customers eager to discover more about a destination.
Acting as a digital concierge, TT6 is armed with practical and tailored advice specifically created to engage key travellers from the business person looking to make the most of a fly-visit, to the family traveller in need of guidance on how to plan their trip or the intrepid explorer looking to venture off the beaten path in familiar places.
In launching TT6, prospective audiences are now being engaged with at the very start of their booking journey, regardless of where they are based.
A solo traveller based in Munich showing an interest in Sorrento, can now easily be identified and engaged with, similarly, to a French photography enthusiast looking to explore the lesser explored Turkish gem of Alacati.
By introducing sophisticated retargeting campaigns to nurture the interests of these cross-market prospective bookers at various touchpoints along the customer journey, they are guided further down the sales funnel, their interest in the particular destination reinforced and strengthened at each stage until they are ready to book.
The data-led approach allows not only the subject-interests or travel motivators of target customers to be identified, but the dialogue between the business and customers can be initiated when they have begun to show interest in the destination.
For example, a customer looking to travel to Paris during Fashion Week may actually show interest in shopping in Paris many months before a trip. They may then begin to search for related keywords such as PFW, eventually looking for information on how to visit the city during its annual fashion festival.
These micro-moments of travel all occur before the actual search for accommodation in Paris begins, but by retargeting customers by offering the right type of content when they need it, Choice Hotels is now able to be front of mind when the time comes to book.
18% increase in organic search traffic
68% increase in organic facebook traffic
80% reduction in cost per availability for Paid Social
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