Marketing Your Hotel to Generation Z

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Catering to Millennials has been a main focus for about as long as millennials have existed as a consumer in the hotel and travel industry. But now hotels need to prepare their marketing strategies for the upcoming travelers.

Three people standing on the side of a road facing a sunset

Meet Generation-Z
Born in today's innovative technology, Gen Z is considered anyone born between 1997 and 2012. This means that as of 2021, the oldest members of Gen Z will be turning 24. Generations Z’s population size and future purchasing power make them a valuable market to start considering. Gen Z is the first generation of "digital natives," a term that signifies this generation doesn’t recall a time before Google, or a world without smartphones. That means they are more likely than any other generations to book and purchase online, giving you more reason to step up your hotel’s digital marketing strategy.

Understand Your Next Hotel Consumers
65% of Gen Z-ers ranked travel and seeing the world as most important when thinking about how to spend their money. This indicates that this generation is incredibly excited about traveling and seeing the world, and they have no intention of waiting until retirement to do so. Research shows that 32% of Gen Z-ers expect to check off at least 5 trips from their travel list over the next 10 years. This generation is certainly making travel bucket lists and is eager to cross some of them off as soon as possible.

Four young adults in the mountains

Gen Z Travel Preferences
One of the statistics on adventure travel is that 56% of Gen Z-ers want an authentic and adventurous experience. Advertising your hotel as a place of rest and relaxation, certainly is still going to reach a large audience, but Gen Z might not be looking for that relaxing vacation or relaxing stay, instead, they're looking for authentic and one-of-a-kind adventures and experiences that your hotel and surrounding area provide. Display ads can be used to attractively highlight destinations, and experiences in a way that allows Gen Z-ers to discover something authentic.

A row of people's hands holding smartphones

How They Engage With Brands

Since this generation spends so much time online, they spend a lot of time engaging with brands and doing research on them. Gen Z values reading reviews because they trust the opinions of past consumers and consider them into the cost they will be paying for a purchase. When you are considering to target Gen Z, reputation management would need to be a top priority when it comes to engagement.

Gen Z-ers have purchasing power

Graph of interest in hotel bookings for GenZ and Millennials

While looking at the average over time interest in hotel bookings for these two generations it is evident that Gen-Z’s interest has surpassed Millennials in recent years. Search volume around Generation Z surpassed millennials in 2017 and has been higher ever since. Within an internal research at GCommerce Solutions of revenue driven within our client portfolio we found that Gen Z-ers represented about 5% of $75m revenue in 2018-2019 and this grew to a 9% of $50m within 2020-2021, even with covid impacting they accounted for a good sum of hoteliers total revenue. The fact of the matter is, this generation now represents a significantly greater percentage of revenue than it did just a few years ago. It’s very likely this trend will continue, and hoteliers need to be prepared on how to appeal to them.

Tips To Attract Gen Z To Your Hotel

  • Target their FOMO through social media by showing them what they are missing by not visiting your property.
  • Focus on a unique experience. This generation wants locality, and adventure.
  • Inspire photo opportunities and provide GenZ memorable and "post-worthy" experiences to build their online presence.
  • You must have a strong digital presence. One way to build a digital footprint is by marketing experiences through display ads and social media.
  • Reach out to them before, during, and after their stay to become a part of the experience, as this generation is more likely to leave feedback and write/post about their stay.
  • Since they are digitally linked to a large number of people, they are more likely to promote a brand that executes.

Bottom line
It's time to find a marketing partner who understands how to connect with digital natives at every point of their journey. Start marketing to this demographic now to remain ahead of the pack as their buying power increases over the next decade. If you want to be a long-term player in the hospitality industry, you might want to invest in a dynamic marketing strategy. GCommerce Solutions is here to assist you in furthering your hospitality marketing efforts.

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