Personalization in travel: Privacy, transparency and the reality of the consumer landscape

Mike's Opinion:

There will be many opportunities for companies to make major strides in personalizing the online travel search and planning process over the next few years as the amount of publicly available data continues to explode and people provide more and more access to their information, especially via 1-click mobile app updates, even if it is at the expense of privacy... Privacy will always be one of the biggest challenges in accessing the information necessary to truly make accurate and relevant proactive recommendations that will consistently resonate with people as their individual tastes change from day to day or year to year. The only ones who can get close enough to the customer to do this at scale seem to be Google, Facebook etc who have permission to access to emails, chats, calendars and other daily-use products, as well as checkins and other public data. The rest of us will have our best chances to address personalization well in our chosen niches.

-Mike

Article Excerpt:

One of the themes at this year’s PhoCusWright conference in Hollywood, Florida, was the role of personalization in travel. Especially as technologies increase in sophistication, effortless personalization – or tailored offers customized according to previous behavior without direct input from travelers – is already happening across the board.

In this era of Big Data, inexpensive storage and easily deployed technologies, there are many concerns when it comes to personalization: privacy, transparency, user control of their data, opting in versus opting out, and providing the right product at the right time in the right channel.

Personalization is clearly good for companies, as they are likely to see better conversion rates as they improve their ability to retail the appropriate product to each customers.

But what about consumers? Is there a line that can’t be crossed, or will the decreased time-to-purchase due to effective personalization improve the customer experience in a way that makes the related loss of privacy worth it?

Tnooz sat down with Layton Han, who is the CEO of Adara, a firm that focuses on putting travel sellers in front of hyper-targeted buyers in a seamless connection platform.  We spoke in-depth about the opportunities – and realities – of travel personalization.

The following are all direct quotes by Mr. Han.

READ THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE: Personalization in travel: Privacy, transparency and the reality of the consumer landscape.

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