Boosting Visitation Using Geo Analysis
Net Conversion worked alongside Nassau Paradise Island (NPI) to utilize the most effective mix of audiences, geos and channels to drive demand and convert qualified audiences to choose Nassau Paradise Island as their next vacation destination.
The Nassau Paradise Island Promotion Board (NPI) is responsible for driving interest in and bookings to the member hotel properties on Nassau and Paradise Island in the Bahamas including Atlantis, Baha Mar and more. In 2022 NPI was challenged with two critical external factors that were changing consumer travel behaviors:
- Post-pandemic interest leading to media behavior shifts
- Inflation impacts on overall travel demand
Despite these external factors, our goal for the destination remained the same: utilize the most effective mix of audiences, geos and channels (from video to search) to drive demand and convert qualified audiences to choose Nassau Paradise Island as their next vacation destination.
To tackle the challenges ahead of us, we needed to re-evaluate our audience-first strategy to ensure that we were targeting the most qualified audiences given the changing market conditions. Additionally, we needed to refocus our investments on the highest converting feeder markets to ensure we were capturing qualified demand.
Layered with our qualified audiences, we aimed to increase media spend in the highest converting markets which had direct flights and available seat inventory to the destination, with the outcome of increasing website visitation by 10%, resulting in a lift in actual destination visitation. (Based on previous analysis, we found that website visitation closely correlates with on-island visitors)
Our marketing and analytics analysts started by identifying the economic trends that were impacting the traveler’s decision making process. As a result, our research strategy became two-fold:
- Identify shifts in our qualified audiences (i.e., demo and/or interest shifts)
- Layer those audience shifts with flight availability in high converting DMAs
With our shift in audience segmentation and targeting optimizations across our omni-channel strategy, we assisted NPI in increasing island arrivals and site visitations. We exceeded our goal of increasing website visitation at +58% YoY and are forecasting those website visits to increase destination arrivals by +50% by EOY.
Website Visitation YoY
Destination Arrivals by EOY
Audience Shifts: We identified that today’s travelers to Nassau are not the same travelers that we’ve seen historically, reflected in a +7 PPT increase in conversions from adults under <45 years of age (vs 2019 share of demos). Affinity interest targets also reflected a shift with more investors and affluent family/non-family traveler audiences seeing improvement in both scale and conversion rate. NPI website converters saw a +29% increase in family travelers, +21% increase in luxury travelers and +45% increase in avid investors.
Geo Shifts: U.S. inflation increased +9% in June 2022, up year-over-year across all but one category. Energy consumption had the highest increases, with Fuel being up +70% versus the prior year. Based on this early sign of economic uncertainty to come, our team looked into top DMA markets that we were currently targeting and communicated with the major airlines to understand their seat availability for the third and fourth quarter of 2022. With this information, we were able to see market shifts based on supply and demand, and analyze how our target DMAs have impacted website traffic, and conversion rate share.
Our finding showed that Boston, DC and Orlando were our biggest shifters from Q1 to Q2 and had the highest opportunity for our geo-strategy. Once we were aware that these markets not only had the highest conversion shift for NPI and had also increased their direct flights post-pandemic to Nassau, we adjusted our targeting to reach those qualified travelers in the opportunity markets
Implementation: We started by breaking out zip codes (a similar strategy done during the pandemic in 2020) to understand exactly what DMAs within this geo would be most qualified, and could later be optimized and refined. After breaking out the geo-campaigns, the team focused on including very geo-specific messaging in search ads such as “Only a short flight away from BOS” to increase ad personalization. In category search, we targeted travelers searching for high intent keywords (e.g. Bahamas, how to get to Bahamas, flights to Nassau, etc) and additionally increased bids across video campaigns to increase awareness in these markets as well.
We remained nimble with our audience-first strategy given market conditions which allowed us to hone in on top performing markets with personalized messaging. By increasing personalization in the messaging, as well as pulsing awareness efforts in higher converting markets, our optimized strategy netted better results.