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Online Travel Agents: Whose Marketing Wins the Booking Battle?

Consumer demands are rising in what many are calling the Now Economy—and the travel industry is no exception.

According to Google, 57% of U.S. travelers believe that brands “should tailor their information based on personal preferences or past behaviors,” and 36% would be willing to pay more for this personalization.

This means that the heat is on between the top online travel agents (OTAs). It’s no wonder that 80% of consumers prefer to self-serve to get the information they need when the two largest OTAs, Expedia Group and Booking Holdings, spend upwards of $10 billion in paid search.

Today, if you’re comparing flights, reading hotel reviews, and booking a vacation package, you’re likely doing so with the help of an OTA. But how are these OTAs engaging their customers?

User Engagement Teardown: Top Online Travel Agents

We did a User Engagement Teardown to compare three of the most popular OTAs—TripAdvisor, Travelocity (acquired by Expedia Group), and Kayak (acquired by Booking Holdings)—to give you an inside look into their customer engagement across email and mobile.

To conduct our research, we signed up for an account on each site and increased our level of activity over the course of three weeks. We completed our profiles, downloaded their mobile apps, browsed travel deals and abandoned our carts.

After analyzing the content of all messages received, we identified what these businesses are doing well and what areas could use improvement.

Take a look at the teardown below to learn whose cross-channel marketing wins the booking battle.

(Note: if you can’t see the embedded SlideShare, make sure to turn off any ad blockers!)

Want a complete walkthrough of our slides with even more expert commentary?

Check out our video deep-dive to hear our thoughts on the marketing strategies of these travel leaders.

You can also see our past comparative teardowns (including Uber vs. Lyft and Blue Apron vs. HelloFresh) on our User Engagement Teardowns page.

Note: TripAdvisor, Travelocity, and Kayak are not Iterable customers.

Iterable

Iterable is the growth marketing platform that enables brands to create, execute and optimize campaigns to power world-class customer engagement across email, push, SMS, in-app and more with unparalleled data flexibility. An integrated, cross-channel solution—built for marketers, trusted by engineers, designed with intelligence.

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