The Danger of Trying Too Hard to be Hip With Millennials

By Dave Spector Partner, Tambourine | June 12, 2016

Every generation and demographic has seen its share of gimmicky marketing and cringe-worthy advertising. Millennials are no different. With all the attention millennials have received as the current ‘it’ demographic, hotel brands are being challenged to come up with brilliant campaigns that they can relate to.

In this push for creativity, some brands go overboard by jumping on the latest slang, trend, social media platform, or celebrity du jour, with the brand coming off as desperate as a result. While we can all admire a brand that will bend over backwards to sell to the world’s largest consumer group, they can end up doing the one thing that Gen Y hates the most: Trying too hard.

Hotels and companies across the globe are clamoring for the hearts and wallets of millennial travelers.

And, who can blame us?

Millennials apparently make up the world’s largest demographic, with about $200 billion in annual buying power in North America. As they come of age, millennials enter life cycles that require major spending, like education, children and real estate.

And they especially give hotel marketers a reason to celebrate with their affinity for remarkable travel experiences and their love for bragging about them on social media.

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Coming up in January 2018...

Mobile Technology: Relentless Innovation

Technology has become a crucial component in attracting and retaining hotel guests, and the need to enhance a guest’s technology experience is driving a relentless pace of innovation. To meet and exceed guest expectations, 54% of hotels will spend more on technology in 2018, and mobile solutions in particular will top the list of capital investments. Many hotels are integrating mobile booking, mobile keys, mobile payments and mobile check-in into their operations. Other hotels are emphasizing the in-room experience, boosting bandwidth and upgrading flat screen TVs to more easily interface with guest mobile devices. And though not yet mainstream, there are many exciting technology developments on the near horizon. The Internet of Things (loT) is taking form in some places, and can be found in guest room control systems, voice activation systems, and in wearable sensors that can be used for access and payment options. Virtual reality headsets are available at some hotels so guests can enjoy virtual trips to exotic locations or if off-property, preview conference facilities and guest rooms. How long will it be before a hotel employs a fleet of robots for room service, or utilizes a hologram as a concierge, or installs gesture-controlled walls that feature interactive digital displays? Some hotels are already using augmented reality for translation services, or interactive wall maps, or even virtual décor. This pace of innovation is challenging property owners and brands to stay on top of the latest technology trends while still addressing current projects. The January Hotel Business Review will explore what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in the mobile technology space.