SINGAPORE: New research indicates that a deeper understanding of travellers’ emotional responses could offer new opportunities for travel marketers.

UM Worldwide, the media and advertising agency, examined the travel markets of Japan, Indonesia, China, Malaysia, India, Singapore, the Philippines, South Korea, Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand with the involvement of 54,000 participants.

Chad Stoller, UM Worldwide’s global CIO, outlined the findings at the recent Mumbrella Travel Marketing Summit and he explained that choice overload – where too many choices can lead to decision paralysis and result in less sales – is bad news for brands.

To cut through to consumers, brands must be relevant – and emotions are a shortcut to that, especially for the travel sector. (For more, including how brands can make use of mobile targeting, read WARC’s in-depth report: Consumer travel trends in Asia-Pacific.)

The research suggested that travellers from most APAC markets (Hong Kong, India, Indonesia and the Philippines) experience joy, followed by relaxation (China and Australia) and intrigue (Thailand and Malaysia) during the actual trip.

Meanwhile, some markets are mostly inspired (South Korea), anticipatory (Japan) or optimistic (Singapore).

This has implications for travel brands to adapt their communications to match the particular market’s mood: “You’d want to market directly to these regions with perhaps a slightly different nuanced messaging in order to appeal to them,” Stoller said. “It’s not just one-size-fits-all.”

In the Philippines, where travellers feel optimism, and Thailand, where intrigue dominates travel emotions, the messaging strategy could be one of sparking a sense of discovery instead.

“If somebody is joyful or they are anticipating a trip, you want to put messages in front of them to maintain their excitement,” said Stoller.

“If somebody is feeling pride, you want to show them how they are going to be able to brag; you want to show them all those pictures they are going to able to take onto Instagram,” he added.

“Show them things that are not necessarily what they are thinking about, show them other opportunities that they might have on this particular trip,” was his advice.

Sourced from WARC