When examining the current travel landscape, one point becomes abundantly clear: Women are doing it more often and with more sophistication.
When setting out to see the world, women seek out and experience everything our chosen destination has to offer. We reserve luxurious spa treatments, book tables at fine-dining destinations, and fill our itineraries with visits to cultural touchstones like the Sydney Opera House and the Egyptian pyramids.
Where women differ from their male counterparts is in the front-end work and financial investment we put into trip planning. An estimated 32 million single U.S. women travel at least once annually, with one-third of them taking more than five trips a year. Furthermore, women who travel make 80% of trip-related decisions.
Women bring enthusiasm, open minds, and open wallets to the travel experience. By embracing marketing tactics that appeal to women empowered to travel alone or in groups, retail, tourist, and hospitality specialists can maximize their earnings and create vacation experiences that will be hard to top.
Craft a marketing strategy that entices women who travel
When it comes to planning a fabulous vacation, male travelers tend to see specifics while women look at the whole picture.
For some men, they might center their entire itinerary on a round of golf at a historic spot like St. Andrews in Scotland. Put the planning in the hands of a woman, and they’ll likely piece together an agenda peppered with all that Scotland has to offer. They’ll research nearby spas, identify some whisky distilleries, or schedule hikes and tours through the country’s lush and scenic sites.
Whether by air or by sea, international women travelers set trends, plans, and budgets. To engage and build the best travel experiences for women, consider these marketing strategies:
1. Think about what’s most important to them.
A location’s sights, sounds, smells, and tastes might dominate vacation planning, but don’t focus entirely on those. Instead, think about how the most minute, essential details can speak to women empowered to travel.
For instance, consider the complementary grooming and toiletry options you offer. Are they natural products? Is there a vegan moisturizing option? Everyone loves to sample (and maybe swipe) hotel soaps, facial cleansers, makeup removers, or lotions. Are yours leaving guests feeling dried out? Is there enough to serve someone staying five days (or more)?
These details won’t headline a travel package, but they’re worth promoting and are shareable experiences that women will talk about with other women that can go a long way toward securing their business.
2. Offer female-friendly, exclusive services for women.
Guest safety should be paramount for a city and its hospitality providers. Make sure you’re clued into exclusive female outing options that might put those travelers at ease.
Partner with transportation services that might provide personal service to resorts or hotels so women feel more at ease. Make sure those guests have concierges’ business cards on standby to aid in any special requests. Light your pathways so they can walk safely and with clarity.
You can also look at your review your menu to ensure there are healthy options along with vegan, gluten-free and similar offerings to accommodate the most discerning guests. Women appreciate these steps and will consider it in any purchasing decisions.
3. Diversify your marketing materials.
Think about the type of promotion that appeals to you. Did the people in those brochures, photos, or posts promote diversity? Women who travel do so to see things and meet all different types of people, so make sure your marketing materials reflect that.
Provide testimonials from a diverse group of travelers. Women, men, families, solo travelers, and group travelers all have different experiences to share. Promote their insights in printed materials, on websites, and on various social media platforms. Whatever outreach method you use, ensure there’s something there that connects with women and sparks their curiosity.
Women are knowledgeable and active travelers who are ready to bring the trip of their dreams to reality in an instant. By taking the time to market and tailor your offerings to them, you’ll engage a group that will enthusiastically spend their time (and money) with you and share those experiences with their networks.
About the author
MJ Vogel is the marketing director at Xchange of America, which is leading the charge in making foreign currency exchange more convenient and efficient for travelers planning their next international excursion.