Activities in the City: Activities and Events Drive Bleisure Travel

Monya Mandich, VP, Marketing, Expedia Group Media Solutions
June 29, 2017
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You’ve seen them. You’ve read about them. You may even be one of them. Now, go get them!

So, how do you “go get them?” It’s simpler than you think. Like any other traveler, the key is providing them with what they want, in the right places. Fortunately, we’ve done the hard work for you in our study, Discover the Untapped Mind of the Bleisure Traveler. Here, you’ll discover exactly what the bleisure traveler craves, and where they go to find it.  

What they want and where they go to find it?

First, you’ve got to give them something to see. Showcasing sightseeing opportunities is a good place to start. They want this experience. Most places, however, have some form of sightseeing and this alone, isn’t enough to make your destination outstanding. So, how do you separate yourself from the crowd?

For the bleisure traveler, that means experiencing a destination through its activities. When we asked them what they wanted, here’s how they responded. An impressive 86% look for a festival or cultural event. Coming in a strong second, many bleisurers enjoy sporting events at 76%. Below, you can see the rest of the experiences this group of travelers seeks.

Bleisure activity post 2-1.png

Now that you know what they want, how do you market these events to them?  The key is highlighting event content in your destination across your marketing channels. As the chart below shows, event sites and online travel organizations (OTAs) are the best places to do this. These are the top two sites that bleisure travelers visit, so advertising your experiences and unique events in these sites is a must.

Bleisure activity post 1-1.png

Knowing that these types of activities transform your destination into a bleisure hotspot is an opportunity for you to prioritize featuring these in your campaigns year-round. Hosting and advertising for one of your unique experiences positions you to capture this segment of travelers. Here are some key takeaways:

  1. Consider strategic OTA partnerships to entice bleisure travelers by showcasing key events, activities, and experiences.
  2. Make sure you lean into the activities and specific events in your destination in your marketing channels and content.
  3. Have a link to an events calendar detailing the major events coming up in your city. Partner with your local attractions to see what events they have in the pipeline and coordinate with them.
  4. Finally, be mindful for which types of events (like festivals and music concerts) are most likely to attract bleisure travelers. Try coordinating those events with larger business conferences in your area.

Bleisure travelers are an opportunity to bring in incremental tourism dollars to your destination—and it’s easier than you think. Download our bleisure study here and learn more about attracting the bleisure traveler.

 

 

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Monya Mandich
VP, Marketing, Expedia Group Media Solutions
Monya Mandich is the VP, Marketing of Expedia Group Media Solutions and oversees all integrated marketing and communications activities for the brand. In her role, she is responsible for raising awareness of digital media opportunities for partners across the Expedia Group suite of leading global travel brands. With nearly two decades of experience, she evangelizes a thought leadership approach both externally and internally centered on data-driven insights, which has resulted in travel and marketing industry recognition and accolades. Monya previously managed strategic partnership development, executing strategies for top-tier partnerships, maximizing traffic and revenue for Expedia.com. She started her career in the travel space at VacationSpot.com, where she ran the B2B marketing and customer acquisition efforts for the vacation rental booking site. Monya is on the board of directors for Destinations International and the U.S. Travel, and also participates on the advisory committee for U.S. Travel's Project: Time Off, which aims to shift thinking around the health, business and economic value of personal time off, Monya was also recognized as one of HSMAI’s Top 25 Most Extraordinary Minds in Sales and Marketing. She is a graduate of Western Washington University and lives in the Seattle area with her family.
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