With many British holidaymakers opting to stay home and participate in this year’s “golden summer” of events, including the Olympics and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, travel companies see 2013 as a great opportunity to tempt Brits to take a break overseas. The challenge though in this competitive market will be to creatively re-engage with customers over the next twelve months in a way that sparks imagination and interest, in good time to get onto the ‘holiday shortlist’.

With next April’s anticipated rise of Air Passenger Duty tipped to squeeze traveller ambitions, it is more crucial than ever for UK travel companies to adopt a multi-touchpoint marketing strategy that will ensure that consumers are exposed to all that a destination has to offer, on a number of different levels. This is potentially one of the biggest purchases a consumer will make in a year, so they’ll research it thoroughly, asking for recommendations, reading online reviews and hunting out enough information that they’ll almost be able to feel the sand between their toes by the time they book the flights.

Much holiday research is done online with 35% of people researching their next destination online and close to 40% booking that way, so to be in with a chance, brands need to reach people before they type a destination into Google – if you’re not front of mind, you might not even be considered!  An effective way to do this in a manner that enables big creative and spectacular vistas is Outdoor advertising and within that, to achieve excellent coverage of your destination message to a relevant audience, taxi advertising.

As one of the UK’s most recognisable icons and renowned as the best taxi service in the world, the black ‘Hackney Carriage’ provides a hard-working and prestigious platform for travel brands to display their attractions. Taxis follow crowds and as they do so, the advertising they carry infiltrates city streets, capturing the attention of pedestrians and engaging passengers from the second they spot and flag down a taxi. This is not just a suitable platform because of its ability to deliver cover and frequency – the audience is perfect too. People who book city breaks and enjoy adventure holidays are 50% more likely than the average person to notice taxi advertising.
Beyond the bright and creative ‘broadcast’ branded exterior of the taxi lies the interior opportunity to engage passengers one-to-one.  Every taxi has a pair of tip-seat posters, but why stop there?  The first thing that over 65% of passengers do when they get into their taxi is use their smartphone to go online and as we already know, this is how they do much of their research.  With an average journey time of 17 minutes, this moment in a taxi offers a high quality opportunity to immerse potential holiday makers in your destination experience by delivering interactive, engaging content to them, via their own phone – and with the advent of QR and NFC in taxis this becomes so much easier to do!

Direct marketing via the highly accountable smartphone channel allows travel businesses to tailor their content by updating it on a regular basis with new offers or benefits and even enables customers to make email enquiries, visit social pages or download destination videos, filling their 20 minute cab journey with imaginative holiday ideas that they’ve actively chosen to explore.

So next time you jump in a black cab to get out of the rain or away from the crowded streets, think about what a great moment this would be for a travel company to tempt you to get far away from it all.

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