After a long dry spell and numerous stops and starts, we can once again take to the skies, rails, roads, and seas this spring and summer. Domestic travel this year is up almost 36% compared to pre-pandemic times, and it is expected to rise another 28.4% next year. International travel to the U.S. is projected to be up an astonishing 228% this year, as well. Travel is back, baby!
With the vast competition to grab a piece of the travel industry pie, how do travel and tourism brands stand out? A beautiful website and a "build it and they will come" attitude aren't enough to capture the attention of those who are seeking relief from their two-year cabin fever. You need a strong brand presence and a trusted voice to cut through the noise. You need public media.
Why Travel and Tourism Brands Turn to Public Media
Public media is an ideal platform to spread the word about the benefits of your travel agency, destination marketing organization, or hospitality business. NPR Audience Insights 2021 tells the story. The audience demographics show that public radio listeners are active travelers interested in the world around them. They also have the resources and desire to visit new places and experience people and communities outside of their own.
Public media audience members are influential and affluent, with more disposable income to spend on their interests. They are highly educated, placing them higher than the rest of the U.S. population in white-collar positions. They are more than twice as likely to be in top management and 78% more likely to be in the C-suite. The median household income is roughly 47% more than the national average.
NPR listeners are very aware of and concerned about the environment. 78% believe in the importance of conservation. Because they are more willing than the average population to sacrifice convenience or pay more for environmentally safe products, they are the ideal audience for businesses involved in sustainable tourism.
The NPR audience is heavily comprised of travelers. 70% have traveled domestically in the last year, and 46% have traveled internationally in the past three years. They aren't leaving travel in the rear-view mirror, either. They are also more likely to travel in the upcoming year.
This group of individuals is curious about the world and committed to lifelong learning. Visiting new places is much more than simply tourism. To them, travel is education. 92% prioritize contributing to their knowledge on an ongoing basis, and 85% say that new experiences and exploration are very important.
NPR audiences travel internationally 139% more than the average person. They also spent 122% more than the average traveler on international trips in the past year. 48% are more likely to participate in European travel in the next year.
NPR listeners are 53% more likely to travel internationally for vacation. These travelers are 75% more apt to do it for personal reasons other than vacation. Public media fans are 50% more likely to be a member of a hotel loyalty program and 78% more likely to be a frequent flyer program member.
Sponsoring Public Media Is the Best Advertising for Travel and Tourism Brands
After an extended period of enforced travel abstinence, the world is ready to get back to experiencing new places or visiting with friends and family. Like someone coming off of a strict diet, they are starved for the next trip. That means they are desperate to hear about what travel and tourism brands have to offer.
Since public media audiences are concerned about the environment, it opens up opportunities for brands that support ecotourism and conscious travel. NPR listeners are willing to pay more while sacrificing convenience for the sake of environmental preservation. They are also passionate about education beyond career preparation. They value lifelong learning, making them particularly interested in educational travel opportunities, such as those that focus on local cooking, language, history, art, culture, and more.
A public media sponsorship is the perfect way for travel agencies, destination marketing organizations, tour companies, cruise lines, or hospitality business brands to get their name in front of an audience interested and engaged in travel and tourism. The public media audience is comprised of veteran travelers that are highly educated and hold a greater-than-average number of top management positions. These qualities mean that they have a more affluent lifestyle with enough disposable income to indulge their travel passions.