Digital Marketing Trends to Add to Your Destination Marketing in 2019


Take Advantage of Micro-Moments

DMOs need to be there when their audience reaches for their devices to create an informed decision. With all the influence out there, DMOs need to take advantage of the opportunity to engage in what Google calls, “micro-moments.”

When a consumer turns to their phones to take action on something rn (right now, for those of you not in the know) they are participating in a micro-moment which can be categorized in the “I want to know, go, buy or do” moments. These moments carry a sense of urgency. Your audience is in-market or often right in the middle of doing, researching or learning something, and they need answers right away.

The I WANT TO KNOW user is currently in your destination exploring, discovering, experiencing and would like to know more about a nearby national park, restaurant review or the historical significance of a monument.

The I WANT TO GO user is leaving their hotel and forgot to ask the concierge about dining recommendations. Luckily, they can reach for their phone and look for the best Italian restaurants, al fresco spots, or local favorites for their dinner plans.

The I WANT TO DO user is about to participate in your destination’s bucket list attractions — maybe hot air ballooning — but is a little apprehensive and wants to see what to wear, what to bring, what to expect, so they watch videos on their phone to learn more.

The I WANT TO BUY user has been seeing ads for a top attraction in your destination and is ready to make a purchase. They may need help deciding what ticket or package to buy, so they use their phone to help them with their purchase process.

DMOs need to be at the forefront of these users’ micro-moments by providing them with accurate and up-to-date information on their website and social channels. These users “want what they want, when they want it” and they want DMOs to deliver on those needs.

“Be There. Be Useful. Be Quick.”

Matt Lawson, Vice President, Ads Marketing at Google

Speak Up and Speak Out

We know they are listening and although we care and want privacy, using our devices as our personal assistant does make life easier. Thus, we continue to use Alexa, Siri and Google Assist to help us daily.

Voice search has made browsing the web even easier. Instead of sifting through pages of SERPs and wasting a click, we can get a few of the most relevant results immediately.

“Siri, what’s the best place for a family vacation in Florida?”
“Alexa, what’s the weather in Park City Utah?”
“OK Google, help me plan my birthday in a tropical location.”

DMOs can prepare for this new search query movement by arming themselves with a strong SEO strategy and optimizing their websites for UX and UI. Your SEO strategy needs to move beyond strong meta tags and keyword relevance and more towards conversational writing styles and long tail keywords. It’s important to keep abreast to all the new developments in this segment of marketing as the technology continues to improve and grow.

Reality Sets In

It’s here, and it’s not going anywhere. Virtual and augmented reality is now a part of our everyday reality. (Remember Pokémon Go? Yeah, of course you do. ) Users want to be active and engaged in marketing messaging, and for DMOs that means embracing this technology for brand awareness and to sell their destinations.

One example:
Marriott nerded out and turned this trend of overlaying reality into real opportunity … minus the little Japanese creatures.

This $27 Billion industry is just pushing the envelope on a whole world of marketing. Although AR and VR is a common tool for destinations; there is so much more to be done.

Too Legit to Quit

Being authentic is critical for DMOs. Everyone touts they are the best, biggest, brightest, but users don’t always believe you. They want to see what other people are saying, especially the brutally honest ones. They are looking for transparency.

Consumers LOVE UGC (if you aren’t already employing a tool like Chute or CrowdRiff, we highly recommend it). UGC is why influencer marketing is such a huge benefit for brands and destinations, people are influenced by others especially those that they follow and have developed trust with.

DMOs needs to make sure their brand and marketing messages are authentic. Add testimonials and reviews wherever they are relevant. Social proof is imperative for relaying an authenticity.

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