Wanted to take a moment to show off Kahuna Laguna Water Park’s new updated Facebook page. After spending the last few months establishing a strong following of over 1500 Facebook users, the page now offers specialized tabs for special discounts, the ability to book a room right from Facebook (adding value to FB ads), details about the 7 Red Jacket Resorts, and contests. The current contest is “Show Us Your Monkey Face!” Get a pic of your child doing their best monkey face, and your family could win a weekend getaway to Kahuna Laguna. Enjoy!
There’s a fight going on for the future of travel marketing. On one side there’s Google, on the other TripAdvisor, Expedia, Yelp and other search or review based travel sites. Who wins will make a big difference in how hotels, resorts, restaurants, entertainment destinations, and others market themselves. (We’ve embedded a short and sweet recap of the issue from the Wall Street Journal above.)
The basics go like this: Google continues to add new properties like Google Places (see video below), Google health, and maybe soon, Google travel (Google is attempting to buy ITA Software, Inc. – and presumably compete with TripAdvisor, Kayak, Expedia, Priceline and others for travel search traffic). These Google properties compete with other sites, which is bad for the other sites. And what gets them really ticked off is that Google lists its properties on top of the Google Search page – above other sites’ listings.
The latest spat came as TripAdvisor formally requested that Google stop using its user-generated reviews on its “Places” listings. TripAdvisor wants its user generated reviews to be something folks can’t get elsewhere. Google argues it’s just giving users the best information in the fastest possible way.
If Google wins this battle, and we’re guessing they will, that might mean big changes for how hotels, resorts, restaurants, travel and entertainment destinations market themselves. For one, media spending will move from Kayak, TripAdvisor, etc. to Google. But maybe more importantly, marketers could have the opportunity to truly combine traditional video and banner placements with search efforts. If you plan online ads, search, social, and traditional media around the same web based content, you’d probably also increase organic SEO traffic.
Just another reason to focus on integrating all your marketing channels around compelling content and information.
What do you think? How would a robust “Google Travel” property affect how you market right now? Drop a comment here or find us on Twitter @Triad_Ideas #ThinkSucces.