The pandemic has brought about long-term changes in the way the travel industry operates. A large part of these changes will come from the adoption of new technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning into almost every aspect of travel. Technology offers enthralling new applications for the travel space and enables businesses to create smoother, more efficient, and interconnected processes across multiple platforms, all leading to a better customer experience.
For example, companies adopting AI-powered email marketing and predictive analytics witnessed a higher return on investment (ROI) in lead generation. AI also helps process data based on recency and frequency of customer interaction with the brand, helping companies expand their reach and ensure engagement. AI-powered email marketing technologies allow travel companies to engage with their target customers efficiently and offer personalized services according to their needs. Mr. Amit Madhan, President & Group Head – Information Technology & E-Business, for Thomas Cook (India) & SOTC in a discussion with CXOtoday shared more insights on the same.
- What are the current challenges that travel industry marketer’s face?
The pandemic had an enormous impact worldwide on the travel industry and although countries have started reopening their borders with eased protocols, the risk of sudden policy changes around air travel, visas, and quarantine requirements poses dynamic challenges for marketers while promoting destination-based products. This is directly affecting customer behavior and hence posing a challenge for targeted marketing.
- How Artificial Intelligence is being adopted in the travel industry? How can AI/ML based personalization help in improving customer acquisition & engagement?
We have implemented personalization for our users wherein our web page appears differently for all our repeat visitors basis the theme/destination they searched or looked up on their last visit. This was initially defined by our backend teams basis their understanding but now with artificial intelligence the system understands the customer’s requirements and basis the user behaviour along with our initial inputs designs the output/display of the webpage. We plan to launch similar AI-based logic in our chatbots as well.
Additionally, we have implemented a concept called ‘Customer Journeys’ using Netcore Cloud’s Customer Engagement & Experience Platform wherein we send our customers communications regarding new destinations, and based on their engagement the system accordingly showcases more targeted information on the destination/offers/products of their interest.
- How does Netcore Cloud enable Thomas Cook to create an effective communication channel? How is the brand benefiting? Can you share an example?
At Thomas Cook India and SOTC, we use the Netcore Cloud’s Customer Engagement & Experience platform for its complete communication module to connect with customers. We segment our complete database based on customer profiles and past behaviour and accordingly communicate with our customers – be it via email broadcast, SMS, email, and/or WhatsApp update. This allows us to connect with our customers via different mediums but yet not bombard them with continuous communications.
We have migrated 17% of our users from inactive to active and achieved 20% opens across by implementing Netcore Cloud’s EMS.