All of our lives have been affected by the pandemic. From travel restrictions, postponement of major events like the Olympics, the need for home schooling to the way we shop and maintain relationships, the disruption is unprecedented. In an instant, our dependence on digital technologies became more necessary than ever. Companies had to push the technology infrastructure to its limits, adopting new workflows to avoid disruption as the growing number of employees began working remotely around the world. The digital transformation has accelerated at an exponential rate and companies like Slack, Microsoft and Zoom have seen the value of stocks increase as the demand for remote work tools increases. Conversely, the travel and communications industries suffered during the first phase of the pandemic. The clearest proof of this can be found in the sharp images of empty airports, including quieter roads. 96% of countries have now implemented some form of mobility restriction in order to contain the epidemic, anchoring almost all of us in one way or another. A financial crisis is likely to occur, resulting without no doubt more changes in world travel. and media landscapes. So what will be the main implications of this for the future of travel? “Staycations” and “Bubble Travel” People dream of traveling again, looking for that perfect destination when things are over but dreams don’t cost, vacations and travel Cost sensitivities, associated with problems Health and the lack of opportunities for long-distance travel mean that short-haul stays and travel will likely be the first green spurts of the recovery for the travel and tourism industry. A recent survey of members of the U.S. dollar flight club found that more than 56% planned to stay in the United States during the summer – the return from the long road trip to the United States. Travel bubbles, corridors and airlift are all things that come into effect or are discussed at the legislative level to allow people to travel freely between two or more countries as part of a gradual reintroduction of international tourism. Agreements such as the trans-Tasman bubble between New Zealand and Australia, and the travel corridor of Vietnam and Thailand are early signs of what is to come, providing an excellent opportunity for organizations destination marketers to engage with audiences closer to home, but for others, this change in consumer travel habits will require a reassessment of current global travel strategies. Brands must be ready to adapt market by market, engaging the public with different strategies through the recovery phases of national, regional and finally international travel. It is essential that brands know how to read the recovery signals for each phase of the rebound. Contactless commerce and the future of mobility Health is now a major concern for travelers. Transportation authorities and retailers are rapidly advancing to implement new contactless technologies that enable safer engagement with consumers as restrictions are lifted. The push towards automation, contactless, click and collect, facial recognition and self-service technology brings a new end-to-end experience “respectful of social distance”. The immediate future is contactless, so brands must harness the power of data and technology, advancing the blurring of offline and online experiences. Many brands are turning to virtual and augmented technologies; Sephora and L’Oréal have led the way by allowing buyers to “ try ” a shade of lipstick or makeup via virtual mirrors or the screen of their smartphone.The ability to interact with the physical via mobile is increasingly used by the OOH industry. The owner of the British media OOH, Ocean Outdoor, has announced its intention to introduce contactless advertising screens, deploying haptic technology in flight in digital out of the house, replacing the touch screen activity by screens and interfaces triggered by natural movements of the hands in the air. This paves the way for “ contactless billboards ” dragged into this virtual subway store in South Korea by Tesco Homeplus a few years ago; more than ever, consumers are ready to use these technologies to improve their experiences. A recent study by travel market research company M1ndSet found that 70% of buyers want more widespread use of VR and AR technology in the retail industry. Brands will have to adapt their digital strategy and foster a robust omnichannel presence, by combining offline and online engagement more effectively. The rise of the “ extreme travel segment ” Many companies, strengthened by the effectiveness of virtual communication technologies throughout the pandemic, will seek to take advantage of what they see as an opportunity to reduce travel costs and achieve sustainability goals. If we are effective, the heavy use of technologies such as Microsoft Teams and Zoom in recent months has demonstrated its limits. Relationships and human relationships simply cannot be built and strengthened by full trust in conferences and video calls – nothing can replace face to face meetings. A survey by National Car Rental has shown that 81% of their sample believe that business travel helps them to establish key relationships that they would not have been able to do without traveling. While business travel is generally less affected by health problems, recent history has forced many to rethink their future travel needs. While we expect lower levels of business travelers overall, we believe that a more concentrated level of c-suites taking the necessary travel will shape the recovery of this segment, providing B2B brands with an opportunity to engage this elusive audience. likely to be seen in pleasure travel, from individuals with very high net worth (UHNWI) to those who need to visit friends and relatives (VFR) abroad, the immediate increase in “ segments concentrated travel is likely to shape the recovery of the global economy. Trip. Before the widespread global closings, private jet travel experienced a 40% year-on-year increase since March, with passengers seeking to avoid long wait times at major global hubs. Driven by similar motivation, we expect private jets and cross-border trains to be the first to benefit from the immediate increase driven by these extreme travel segments, and brands will need to adapt their engagement to reflect these changing profiles, across environments and media outlets. Growing importance of China and free independent travelers (FIT) China, which has just crossed the 50% mark for domestic flights, is poised to lead the stabilization of international travel as well as other Asian markets. the international scene should not be underestimated both in terms of the number of passengers and purchasing power. Currently the second largest passenger market, China is expected to overtake the United States by 2031. However, with recent events and China’s rapid recovery, this climb to the top is expected to occur more earlier than expected. Chinese international tourists spent $ 277.3 billion in 2018, making it the most valuable travel audience for many travel brands, spending almost four times more than any other passenger audience. In recent days, luxury brands such as Burberry, LVMH and Hermes have all seen the power to push back Chinese consumer demand, reports suggest Hermes made $ 2.7 million on the first day of reopening its store in Guangzhou. These brands all displayed effective engagement with their Chinese consumers throughout the crisis, underscoring the power of “ profit finality ” in advertising at that time. This audience is key to the recovery of the global travel, and one segment within it – Free Independent Travelers (FIT) – is recovering faster than any other sub-segment. Although group travel currently accounts for the largest share of travel in China, as the FIT segment continues to grow, we expect the overall profile of the Chinese traveler to become younger, more digitally independent and more customer-oriented. ‘international. The rapid resumption of travel to China coupled with these new segments requires smarter communication strategies to effectively interact with these influential consumers outside of mainland China. From the environment to the public, OOH is programmatic Volatility is the new standard for the travel industry: geopolitical events, terrorism, and more recent global pandemics continue to significantly influence international travel and our mobility patterns. This volatility has led many players in the OOH industry to question the long-standing minimum guarantee business models that have been favored by many owners and transportation platforms for several years – 92% of airports stated that they use minimum guarantees in their concession agreements. These models guarantee owners a revenue based on a stable historical audience that media owners can assess and offer to advertisers. However, recent events have highlighted that the volatility of the mobility model of people means that a more flexible, public-led approach must become common practice. Advances in data, analysis and digitization of the OOH infrastructure allow global media owners and PSI to adapt to this future, enabling sophisticated and flexible new public-driven OOH purchases , to become a reality. This approach opens the door to the possibility of global programmatic OOH solutions. Allowing campaigns to be planned, purchased and served to diverse audience profiles, minimizing waste and maximizing the potential for personalized communication strategies for brands around the world. The way we navigate our world has suffered its fair share disruption over the years, but nothing has made us question its future more than the current crisis. The resilience of the industry remains strong and, over time, the recovery will be evident. Flexibility, innovation and adaptation are the new battlefields. The agencies, brands and advertisers who adapt most effectively to these changes in consumer behavior and mobility will be the ones that will shape the long-term future of the global travel and OOH sectors. Ed Heaney, Director of Development strategic at PSI



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