Hotelier Indonesia


The Art of Selling to Three Generations

Contributed by Estella Hale, V.P. of Product, SHR 


“To get your guests where they want to go, you need to first know where they’re coming from.”
—Catlyn Origitano, Sojern\


In an increasingly competitive market, truly knowing and engaging your guests has never been more important, and that includes understanding their generation. According to a recent Gallup study, fully-engaged guests spent $588 per visit compared with $403 per visit for actively-disengaged guests.

But only one in five guests reported being fully engaged; Millennials 20%, Generation X 22%, and Baby Boomers 25%. However, these low engagement numbers translate into a huge opportunity for hoteliers.

In a recent webinar, Sojern’s Sr. Content Marketing Manager, Catlyn Origitano, and myself walked our audience through this opportunity by understanding, reaching, and engaging hotel guests from every generation. By understanding who they are, why they matter, and how to appeal to them, we unlocked some practical keys to converting more of each group more often.
Millennials: “M” is for Mobility

This much-talked-about group, born between the early 1980s and late 1990s, are a prized market these days, not just for their current spending patterns, but because they are poised to be the largest-ever consumer generation, currently spending upwards of $200BB in goods and services annually. They’re also 23% more likely to travel abroad than any generation before.

With our sharing economy, it may sound surprising that a full 58% prefer full-service hotels in that travel, with only 11% preferring Airbnb type services. They also tend to be research and reward-oriented with loyalty programs, though not necessarily brand loyal.

Growing up in the social networking, smartphone era, Millennials, also known as the Digital Elite, are likely to forgo the help of travel agents, opting to book their own online flights and accommodations, with 85% checking multiple sites. Catlyn noted that this number may point to an interesting tendency.

“It’s the Fear of Missing Out also known as FOMO,” she said. “They want to make sure they are getting the best price, location, etc. to assuage their anxieties over not getting the best experience.” Considering that 46% book travel through a smartphone or tablet, and 74% search for travel related info on their mobile phone, it’s also all about using mobility to capture that experience.

How do you convert them? Serve that love of mobility across all devices as Millennial travelers hit the road, so you are still engaging with them whether they’re in their cars or in your hotel parking lot looking at reviews. Make sure your content looks good on all devices, especially smartphones that can tend to become distorted. Get them to convert “in the moment” with persuasive messaging.

Make sure to use instant gratification techniques from your booking engine, like strike-thru, so they can see immediate benefits. Since they interact heavily with apps, try to capture that look and feel on your site.


Ready to learn more about selling to three generations?




For more details, contact us at [email protected]


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Hotelier Indonesia

Hotelier Indonesia magazine covers hotel management companies and every major chain headquarters. We reaches hotel owners, senior management, operators, chef and other staff who influence, designers, architects, all buyers, suppliers for hospitality products or services more than any other hotel publication in the world..

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