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LEADERS OF LUXURY CONFERENCE


‘TRAVEL INTENT TRUMPS CLIENTS’ AGE’


Using traditional demographic profiling to identify clients’ preferences in the luxury market is “outdated and antiquated”, according to travel marketing specialist Sojern. Speaking during a panel debate on


today’s luxury traveller, Sojern senior sales director Spencer Davies said it was more important to identify customers’ ‘travel intent’ – what they want to do on holiday – rather than profile consumers based on age, class and lifestyle. Two people of the same age, postcode,


school or football team, for example, could want vastly different types of holidays, he said.


“Segmenting people into profiles is an old-school marketing technique,” he said. “The idea we both want to go on the same holiday is unlikely. I might want a beach holiday and he might want a walking holiday. Using demographics to identify someone is antiquated.” Designer Travel managing director


Panellists debate the luxury market


Amanda Matthews agreed. She said: “Luxury clients vary so much. It’s not about demographics.”


She stressed the challenges of keeping up with younger luxury travellers, saying: “You have to be ahead of the game; they are so geared up with technology and we might overlook that.”


Debbie Marshall, managing director of Silver Travel Advisor, warned against using age to identify luxury clients.


FROSTRUP ISSUES ENVIRONMENTAL RALLYING CALL


It is up to the whole travel industry to ensure that protecting the environment is kept at the top of the agenda by destinations, according to journalist and broadcaster Mariella Frostrup. She said: “The environment really does matter. Going to places where


they educate you about the environment is one of the great pleasures of luxury travel. “It is the responsibility of everyone in the travel business, whether you are writing or sending people away, to make it one of the key points, otherwise there will not be anywhere for us to visit.” Quizzed on the current terrorist threat in many destinations, Frostrup said


there was little the industry could do other than “allay irrational fears”. “The way to battle terrorism is not to be terrorised,” she said.


Dr Paul Marsden: ‘Ego tech is key’


‘NARCISSISTIC CLIENTS WANT HOLIDAYS THAT FLATTER THE EGO’


The future of luxury travel is ‘ego technology’, according to a consumer psychologist. Speaking at the first Aspire


Leaders of Luxury conference, Dr Paul Marsden urged luxury tour operators to cater to clients who have become increasingly “narcissistic” due to digital technology and social media. Marsden, who works for digital specialist Syzygy, said: “Technology is changing how we think and making us more self- centric. The future of luxury travel is ego tech – technology designed to flatter the ego.” Wearing fitness trackers, making more than three updates on social media a day and owning a selfie stick are all examples of narcissistic traits, he claimed. Luxury travel firms were


urged to tap into this by creating marketing campaigns that appeal to clients’ sense of holiday “entitlement” and flatter the ego, and to promote products that will give clients “bragging rights”.


aspire september 2017 — 29


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