Our latest research, the Amateur Expert Rail Traveller
Not so long ago, we used a device to transmit and receive messages - the Telegraph. Now we attend virtual reality meetings! This evolution shows the speed at which innovation in technology is shaping the way we communicate with and sell to customers.
3 trends influencing the travel industry
The research paper reveals 3 broad trends which are influencing the travel industry today:
- Knowledge: the internet has put extensive interactive content in front of the traveller (user reviews, social networking, Web 2.0). With more knowledge, consumers are becoming experts in travel and are empowered to make additional demands on travel suppliers.
- Technology: has changed the way we book travel. A dramatic shift to online and mobile travel fulfilment is forcing providers to change the way they interact with customers.
- Niche Travel: travel companies must look for opportunities to sell specialised travel services in new ways, to new customers in order to protect revenues. In car rental alone, we have seen a new business model emerge: ‘Zipcar’ lets clients pick up their own car from the street thanks to GPS technology which locates each available car and directs the client to its position.
In addition, the pace of change has been accelerated by the global economic downturn which has put a premium on finding the best product at the best price without compromising on service, and the emergence of a new breed of affluent travellers from eastern countries (less affected by the recession) who seek a seamless travel experience catered to their own cultural needs and demands.
4 ways to build and retain brand loyalty
Deliver comprehensive information which is easy to access and filter
Be price competitive but excel in service expectations
Ensure consistency between brand promise and delivery
In short, travel suppliers must work harder than ever to improve the rail customer experience before, during and after the trip: if they liked it they will tell others - if they didn’t, they will tell even more!
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