As of 19 April 2021, the TransTasman bubble has opened up, allowing two-way quarantine-free flights between New Zealand and Australia. Since the rapid escalation of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020, many countries around the world shut down their borders in an attempt to contain the spread of the virus — New Zealand, included.
With countries now having better control of the virus and vaccines rolling out, a travel bubble has been put in place between Australia and NZ so people can freely travel between the two countries. This can mean a big increase in visitors for travel businesses. Historically, Australia has been one of the biggest sources of international travel into New Zealand, making up 40% of the total. Prior to the border closure, arrivals were expected to grow by 3% per annum according to Tourism New Zealand.
If you are in the travel space, FIRST highly recommends creating a buyer persona for your potential Australian visitors. Personas are used to attract your ideal customers. You can use it by creating content and marketing pieces that speak directly to your customers and connect with them at an emotional level. This could help them go through the sales funnel and achieve your objectives, thereby converting better when they are in your website.
A buyer persona, also known as a customer persona or a marketing persona, is a detailed description of someone who represents your target audience. We recommend giving your persona a name, demographic details, interests, and behaviour traits. When creating personas, we also include their goals, pain points, sources of information, possible objections to the purchase process, and other relevant information regarding their buying pattern.
The first step in putting together your buyer persona for the Australian visitor is research. Gather information based on real data. Here are some places where you can find what you need:
- Tourism New Zealand – This has the most extensive information on the market and the audience that you will be targeting. Some examples of information you’ll find from the website include:
- Purpose of visit
- Average length of stay
- First time visitors vs repeat visitors
- Age profile
- Visitor routes
- Visitor Travel season
- Your own website analytics: If you have Google Analytics on your website (or any other analytics software), you should be able to filter Australia as the traffic source and explore the data from there. You can look at metrics such as traffic source, bounce rates, referring sites and conversion rates to better understand your Australian audience.
- Other internal reports: You can gather business intelligence and background data from other internal sources such as log-in user profiles, sales transaction reports or reports that you might be getting from any proprietary software or CRM systems you have.
- Surveys – These are very effective tools for getting to know your customers more. You can do surveys on the website, via email, through phone calls or in person (while users are on-site or after they experience your service.) You can use it to gather demographic information such as gender, age, origin country / location, income, ethnicity and overall user satisfaction with your services/products.
- Review Websites: This is another source of information you can check out. Customers who leave reviews in websites like Google, Facebook or TripAdvisor usually have a profile you can check. Gather a sample of reviews from people whose profiles indicate that they are from Australia and find out what their main pain points are. The profiles and reviews also often reveal more about their travel style — if they are a couple travelling together for their honeymoon, a group of friends seeking out adventures or families traveling with young children.
Here’s an example of a profile you can put together based on your research. The important thing to remember is that you need to base your customer persona on actual data versus gut feel.
Customer Persona Example:
Andrew has been best buds with Brad and Eric since high school. They’ve taken on different career paths, but they still hang out often. Andrew works in sales and has a very flexible vacation schedule. Eric, on the other hand, is in the medical field so needs to stick to certain dates for his annual leave. Anthony is in IT and can go on leave with sufficient notice. Travelling and planning their annual snow trip is always the highlight of their year. They’ve stayed in touch during the pandemic through Zoom calls and phone calls, but it’s just not the same. They’re really looking forward to a trip together and the opening of the TransTasman bubble is the perfect opportunity To plan their snowboarding trip to New Zealand.
Once you’ve done your research and put together your customer profile. We recommend conducting keyword research for your specific persona and mapping out these keywords and content to the buyer’s journey. This can be a long tedious process, but is definitely worth your time.
If you need assistance with your Content Strategy, FIRST Digital would be happy to help.