An open letter from millennials to hotels
Dear Hotels: As a member of the Millennial generation, I admit I don’t see what’s wrong with eating brunch at 3 PM, or taking selfies, or abbreviating words that are already short enough.
I’d rather throw my iPhone into the back-of-the-bus nether gloom of balled-up Burger King bags and mystery spills than deal with a dysfunctional scrolling experience on my morning commute.
Sorry for not being sorry. We have high expectations.
You see Millennials are digital natives. We were born between 1980-ish and 1995-ish, and somewhere during our 478,900th round of Super Mario Brothers 3, digital dexterity became inherent to our natures.
So when we come to your site and can’t scroll, or see images, or view your brunch menu, it makes us extremely frustrated.
We Millennials accomplish a lot while also being on our phones. Walking? Phone. Eating? Phone. Dentist chair? Yup.
So, when it comes to planning a trip, you can bet we’re starting the journey with our mobile devices–all 79 million of us. In fact, Google predicted that by the end of 2013 more people would be booking from mobile devices than from PCs.
We love to travel–and we outspend Boomers and Gen-Xers when we do. (Btw, we’re going to outnumber those guys by 2030.) We’re looking for special amenities, killer deals, quirky local attractions and vibrant photos when we come to your site.
According to studies, marketers have only four seconds to capture an online user, but that sounds like an eternity to me. On average, Millennials check at least 10 different sites before booking online.
So, hotels, we need you to help us help you.
First, a robust mobile site is absolutely critical. If your website isn’t optimized for mobile devices, we’re going to bounce. Responsive design is what you need to ensure your site performs flawlessly on all our devices.
Another thing that makes us bounce? Outdated content. I don’t want to “register now!” for your 2011 Winter Wonderland Cocoa Sleigh Ride. It’s 2014!
Secondly, we need you to be able to accommodate last-minute bookings. We typically book hotels about 18 days closer to arrival than older travelers. According to Orbitz and Travelocity more than 60 percent of mobile hotel bookings happen within 24 hours of a stay.
And if your social media presence doesn’t at least include Facebook, we might not be sure you exist. Millennials are very brand loyal and 63 percent of us keep up with brands directly on social media. If we like you, we’ll share it. You’re welcome.
In closing, hotels, we need you to keep up with us—which means keeping pace with technology.
You don’t need to understand how it all works. Knowing what you don’t know is half the battle.
One way that 6,000 properties worldwide are keeping pace with technology and meeting our Millennial needs is with buuteeq.
buuteeq’s cloud-based digital marketing service makes it super easy to publish responsive web designs and vibrant, dynamic content.
Check them out, hotels, and I may be saying “OMG!” for the right reasons the next time I visit your site.