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Hyper Targeting Makes the Most of Your Budget

  The right data lets you personalize your message, no matter what your market. Consider this example out of the tourism industry from Morgan & Co., a media agency owned by EO Lousiana member Eric Morgan.  A Millennial, a Gen Xer, and a Baby Boomer walk into a swanky hotel bar. They sidle up to the three feet of marble that separates them from the smooth-talking bartender and order the house special. Let’s call it a martini. Waiting for the punch line? This isn’t the beginning of an old joke. It happens all the time in New Orleans, Savannah, Los Angeles, and any number of other tourist destinations. That’s because there’s a lot of crossover among generational demographics when it comes to travel. There’s also a lot of competition among hotels, bars, restaurants, and other hospitality industry businesses. How many bars in New Orleans offer “the best” martini in town? Logically, there can be only one. So how does a tourist—whether a Millennial, a Gen Xer or a Baby Boomer—decide which business to trust? The obvious answer is advertising, but that’s not the whole answer. If it was, those thirsty tourists would still be standing around scratching their heads because all of the bars made the same blanket claim: New Orleans’ Best Martini. How do successful travel industry advertisers attract and convert tourists? The more sophisticated answer—the one that savvy tourism marketers understand and act on—is hyper-targeted advertising campaigns. Experienced tourism and hospitality marketers are able to attract their ideal clients by grouping broader demographics into narrower, more swayable market segments. They use data on these market segments to craft campaigns that will speak directly to the unique desires and fantasies of each segment. Let’s get back to those three tourists. How did this particular bar appeal to each demographic? Did the marketing manager use a blanket campaign to target all potential visitors the way that masked Mardi Gras krewe members sometimes chuck out bags of beads toward the end of their route? Or did she look for particular people who were already excited about something specific and more gracefully lob a very special set of…

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