Dominate Your Industry with a Killer Brand Story, Here’s How to Get it Right.

Brand Story – this has been a buzzword (or words) for a while now. But what exactly is it? A lot of people think that a brand story is the history of their brand or the journey to becoming what their brand is today. But here’s the thing – a killer brand story, one that actually stands out, is the perfect mix of facts and feelings. You need to weave a story that will stir in your customers a whirlwind of emotions.

Why your company or startup needs a brand story and needs it now.

We’ve established what a brand story is, now let’s dive into why it is crucial for your business.

Firstly, your consumers need to know what your vision is and hear your voice. A good brand story will do just that. A brand story defines your brand at it’s core. It tells your customers what you are, how you got here, what you can do for them, and why they should trust you. Your brand story is your voice, vision, and mission. 

Brand Story

Secondly, your brand story is the thoughts of others as well. You aren’t the only one authoring this story. It is the thoughts of your customers and followers. Finally, your company needs a good brand story because this is something that will create a positive image of your brand in the minds of your customers.

What can a good brand story do for your company?

The benefits of this subtle marketing strategy are fourfold. A good brand story creates an emotional connection with customers increasing the brand retaining capacity. It will also set you apart from your competitors as you are showing something that is unique. Building connections is an important result of a good brand story.

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What do you need to write a good brand story?

You either write a good brand story or write nothing at all. There are no two ways about this. An effective brand story can turn your business into a great success. Here are a few pointers you need to keep in mind while writing a good brand story –

  1. Jot down the facts: You first need to put down all the facts. Start with yourself, why you decided to start this venture, how you went about it, where your business stands today, and what makes you a differentiator.
  2. State the purpose of your company’s existence: Here, you need to tell your customers or readers all about the dream that was behind the making of this company. What do you want from this? How is your product or service going to be helpful to your customers? Your customer will have these questions for you, and you need to have the right answers.
  3. Transform this into a magic potion that can reach your audience: This is the most tricky part but also the most important. You need to look at everything you have written so far and turn it into something conversational, emotional, and memorable.

What’s next?

Now that you have a great brand story, what do you do with it? You should share it wherever you can. Go ahead and flaunt it on your social media platforms, your website, and your brochures. You need to keep in mind that this brand story is not just for your consumers, it is for your team members and employees as well. They will read it, to get an understanding of what your company is, so they can align their duties with respect to the company’s goals. Creating a good brand story that can really grab the attention of your customers is not an easy task, but once you crack the code, there is no going back. Your company will definitely see an upward spiral.

Travel Tech Startup Entrepreneur, Here’s What You Need To Know About Today’s Travelers

9 out of 10 startups fail. That’s just one of the harsh truths the many entrepreneurs face. It’s also one that they try hard to drown out as they work feverishly towards making their startups survive and thrive.

That being said, It’s this very same awareness of the mortality of one’s startup that can actually drive entrepreneurs to make innovate choices. By understanding today’s evolving travel trends as well as the reasons why most travel startups fail, travel entrepreneurs stand a fighting chance towards getting it right. 

To help make sense of it all, we’ve put together some of the key trends that highlight how travelers are using technology on the go, and how customer experience is changing the future of travel. Startups that deliver value to their customers are the ones that stand a chance at survival.

EXCESSIVE FOCUS ON PRODUCT vs. CUSTOMERS

Most startups are founded by individuals that are passionate about their industry. But many great products simply don’t have the kind of market size or need to turn into scalable businesses. More often than not, founders focus so heavily on building products, that they forget to assess if there’s really a need for what they’re creating in the first place.

Testing a minimum viable product (MVP), getting pre-orders, and in-depth conversations with customers all take a backseat to rolling out feature after feature. We’ve all seen it happen; startups that face that an inevitable early demise due to the fact that they fail to deliver a product market fit.

BUILDING SOMETHING NEW OR 10X BETTER

There’s a cardinal rule to startup success – build a product with a massive need that doesn’t exist or build a product that’s at least 10 times better than its competitors.

Given the friction when it comes to adoption of new products, a product that is only slightly better than existing solutions will find it hard to scale and dominate the market. And yet more than 70% of travel tech startups are trying to reinvent the wheel; with slight improvements, or worse, without understanding how travelers use technology on the go. This again is a quick recipe for failure.

ONLINE TRAVEL AGENTS (OTAs) RULE THE TRAVEL JOURNEY

Originally designed to sell excess inventory in times of slow demand, OTAs have broken the traditional mold of being a travel booking middleman. Instead, they own the journey, encouraging and recommending passengers to take trips based on their profile data, spending pattern and content consumption.

OTAs drive the majority of bookings around the world. They are a primary source of revenue for most hotels. Currently, Four major brands control the OTA market. Expedia, Priceline, Orbitz Worldwide, and Travelocity control about 95% of the market in the United States, according to Forbes. Recently, Expedia acquired Travelocity and announced plans to buy Orbitz.

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Additionally, Google is slowly encroaching the OTAs’ turf with multiple launches that are clearly taking the business off the OTAs and metasearch rivals, such as offering exclusive hotel discounts via its Google One cloud storage platform, “hotel-plus-flight” travel package, as well as a global price insight feature on mobile devices. If you’re building a business in the OTA space, you better come prepared with very deep pockets.

PERSONALISATION AND USER GENERATED CONTENT

As travel becomes more experiential and aspirational, travelers want experiences that are uniquely suited to their tastes and preferences.

Research has found that 97% of millennials use social media while traveling and at least 80% post every day, Instagram is the most preferred platform. With so much user-generated content available, travelers want to move from cookie cutter travel plans to more unique travel experiences which push the envelope. Despite this, many travel brands still struggle to meet the personalization demands of consumers.

SPONTANEITY

Millennials comprise 32 percent of US travelers and are the fastest-growing age segment in travel. Millennials don’t usually book travel more than 3 months out; as spontaneity matters to them. And impromptu plans are very common.

  • Travel-related searches for “tonight” and “today” have grown over 150% on mobile, over the past two years.
  • 72% of all mobile bookings made by U.S. travelers happened within a 48-hour window prior to the booking.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE AND CHATBOTS

On one hand, travelers are looking for more authentic experiences that make them feel connected. At the same time, artificial intelligence based chatbots and cutting-edge products like Alexa powered concierge services (rolled out at the Marriot International) are becoming more and more commonplace.

Chatbots and digital personal assistants are being used by the hospitality and travel industry to create a more efficient and convenient experience for customers.

70% of requests to Google Assistant are expressed in natural language, meaning that people are getting more comfortable having conversations with computers.

There’s still a long way to go towards making personal assistants a common part of one’s travel journey, however, the opportunities are certainly there.

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MOBILE FIRST

85% of travel bookings are happening on mobile devices. Both millennials and Gen Xers have moved to smartphones as their primary device when it comes to travel. Whether its travel information, last minute deals or flight/hotel bookings.

IN CONCLUSION

The key is for every startup to be passionate about customer behavior and customer insights to the point of paranoia. Only then will they have the product and technology edge required to survive and scale.

These are just some trends when it comes to traveler behavior. Each startup will have its own unique customer patterns and insights based on the travel niche in which it operates.