As the generation we market to changes so must our strategies, tactics, and mindsets.
This has been surfacing for a while and it’s starting to take shape and form. I’m on the cusp of both Boomer and Gen X so I see marketing from both sides. The boomer big world, big grab-and-go approach to Gen X - “now let’s think about this” find your niche and rock it tactically. I for one am glad to see the Boomer hard sell go by the wayside I think we have exhausted the internet boom and now we are in the live with it stage.
In marketing what has been emerging is a gentler common sense approach. The Neuroscience that backs the movement is focused on a science of common sense or the common people's science. As usual, I’m going to credit Michael Stelzner of Social Media Examiner Podcast for bringing this trend to light. First with How to Hack The Buyer Brain, Kenda Mcdonald Neuroscientist and Marketing Guru. Her website Automation Ninjas and this week’s Demand Generation Strategy Phil Llic B2B Hero. There are a few more but these two stand out. As I write this I realize that I’ve been heading in this direction for a while. I’ll break it down into a few key points and keep it local to the Tahoe/Truckee Traveler.
Know your people.
We have a few categories here. For those that live in the area full to part-time and those that travel through I’m going to break down the traveler. Each of these has many subcategories but I’ll attempt to stay out of the weeds for this article. When you dive in for your business, dive deep.
The Tahoe Traveler can be broken down into three main segments,
Segment #1 Bay Area frequent visitors, may own a second or third home. They come for the major high seasons, bringing family and friends. Will book in advance but not always there is an element of ease. Vested in the Mountain Lifestyle.
Segment #2 US traveler, comes regularly but is not West Coast centric. Perhaps 1-2 times a year. Will plan out their stay, book in advance, and use or rent what is available.
Segment #3 Foreign most likely single-visit travelers. Plans out the entire stay and book in advance the iconic Tahoe activities. Will rent what is needed.
Travel in their shoes
They know the drill and will show up early to get a seat and may linger late to avoid traffic. Arriving on Fridays and sometimes Thursday nights for an extended weekend. They own a lot of their own equipment and are active in the mountain lifestyle. Will carve out at least a week during high season with family and friends.
Staying 1-3 times a year, 5-15 days each time, wanting a taste of the mountain lifestyle with multiple activities and the ability to rent what is needed. They book primarily online and are receptive to frequent buyer perks where emails are the main delivery. Many have done this for decades and some for generations. (Did anyone say “testimonials”?)
The planners of the bunch. Booking online and through agencies. They are looking for the iconic Tahoe experience from hiking to boat tours. Language and culture may be your biggest challenges. One of my clients with a Greek family background runs a resort and has a solid booking of Eastern Europeans because he uses his family culture and story in his online presence.
Learn the journey
This is a bit more complex and I’m personally working on mapping out a few customer journeys myself. Are they on the path to purchase and where are they in their buying journey?
Memorial weekend is big here, the start of the summer. Mid-April or September are big months for pre-season reservations. This spring our region saw a drop in visitors. Mainly due to post-COVID travel abroad and the cooler weather. Europe is getting hammered with tourists. I predict we will have a busy Fall with everyone decompressing from their travels abroad. Tahoe won’t seem so crowded after this year of high European tourist counts. I can’t imagine what the traffic for Portofino, Italy must be like.
Frequent buyer's discounts work well here 2-4 months in advance. They will have locked down lodging for Christmas by mid-August and book summer by February. In October/May they will be filling in the booking for activities.
3-6 months in advance for lodging. They are looking far in advance and know that again, culture and language take a bit more time. Clear simple messaging works best here.
Go where they are.
Regional Meta ads for touching them pre-drive up the hill. Facebook events can be a game changer if you’re reaching the weekend crowd. Try Homeowner newsletters and digital news like Moonshine Ink. Specific activity influencers, social online groups, and newsletters.
Email for advanced bookings and frequent buyer discounts, SEO, and Google will play a big part here so bone up on the new G4. Switch to Meta both paid and organic when they are in the Tahoe region. A Meta $ 5-a-day ad will saturate the Tahoe Truckee area. It’s still the best deal around.
SEO and Google are kings here. Knowing your customer will save you in ad dollars. Remember culture and language can be barriers. Keep it simple.
This is just the beginning in learning how to find your niche customer, give them a tap from time to time, and lead them to your door. Gone are the days of flashy buttons and clickbait. You will get better results with a 15% off email button, plus the added bonus of retargeting. But be wary, blatant retargeting with annoying multiple emails will lose you any gain and give your business a bad rep. It’s all about value. So if you don’t have anything of value to offer it’s best you don’t say anything at all. I’ll be talking a lot about value in the future.
Thank you Truckee Chamber again for my past Lunch and Learn on July 12th. I get so much direct feedback and problem identification out of these talks and in return, I hope I brought value to all those who attended.
If there is a topic you’d like to hear more about by all means comment below or direct message and I’ll do my best.
Nothing better than a good question to jump into.
Reach out for a talk over coffee or a hike I give information freely. I only ask to be paid when I do the work. email@example.com
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