Is that the wind you feel in your hair as you imagine yourself standing on top of a mountain, breathing in the crisp, cool air? Sadly, opening your eyes reveals the fan next to you, blowing in your face. That just means it’s time for a vacation.
Thanks to Airbnb, there is a growing trend among many travelers to get the true experience of their location by “living like a local” to find those hidden treasures and finds that only the locals know of. Google alone can’t determine the difference between the popular tourist traps and attractions that many people flock to, giving them a constructed experience of the vacation destination, from a favorite local spot with authentic location experience without knowing where to look.
In any industry, companies continually have to adapt to consumer expectations and growing needs. It is no different in the travel industry, and with the expanding saturated market, staying relevant is a must to stay ahead of the competition and keep a brand top-of-mind.
Airbnb launched this growing desire of localized experiences by utilizing its community of renters to leave advice, recommendations, and favorites in their area for such travelers looking for these local and unique experiences. This allows tourists to take advantage of the destination and what it has to truly offer for a true immersion of the area. So, thanks to Airbnb, the traveler can “live like a local”. This year, I also utilized Airbnb’s services for the same local experiences during my vacation. This made me appreciate Airbnb even more as a business, sourcing it for my multiple travel needs in providing me more enjoyment in my limited time there, as well as reliable places to stay.
Due to this growing consumer desire and Airbnb’s success, now other businesses in the travel industry are feeling the pinch and are jumping onto this service, such as Marriott International, the Stafford Hotel in London, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Yahoo, and many more.
Recently, Hilton partnered with FourSquare to keep up with this increasing desire to integrate more personalized and localized expertise into their services with their loyal customers through their app. Most of the insights are provided through Hilton’s employees, to give the local recommendations for travelers desiring the local experience near the hotel. Hilton categorizes these recommendations to filter the advice based on the type of experience desired, such as family friendly, business, or couple getaways. They position themselves in providing an all-in-one location resource for the localized experience and everything Hilton has to offer, including the ability to control their rooms’ features through their app during a customer’s stay.
Companies understanding and staying on top of consumer demand and trends, not only provide the desired service but positively promote their brand and create loyalty. As a result, this promotes dependability to their current and potential customers. So, relevancy is not something to overlook for a business looking to succeed.