Marketing to Asian tourists can be incredibly difficult, especially when you’re trying to reach out to people who don’t speak the same language and have a completely different set of wants and needs than your normal customers.
One of the keys to building your brand is understanding your target customers and satisfying their needs. If you want to know how to attract Asian tourists, you should first understand what they really want and why your service would appeal to them.
Failure to understand your customers can lead to dissatisfied, and in the world of social media your reputation can be destroyed before you even know it. This is especially true when it comes to Asian social media. So before you start marketing, put in the extra effort to understand your customers and do your best to make a good impression.
Adventure, Leisure, Shopping…What do they want?!
The short answer is all three, but it really comes down to breaking Asian tourists into categories. Asian tourists come from variety of age groups, regions, and incomes. Depending on these factors Asian tourists will prefer different things.
Adventure Seekers – Not Only Asian Millennials
This group tends to be made up of millennials, however even elderly tourists sometimes travel abroad in search of adventure. Most of these tourists have already been to famous landmarks, and are looking for more than just impressive selfies in their trips.
Asians have also been more willing to travel independently, without the aid of tour group services. Asian free and independent tourists (FITs) have been traveling to more and more destinations around the world, allowing for more exploration and deviation from standard tourist spots.
Skydiving in New Zealand, for example, has become incredibly popular with tourists, to the point that the supply of sky-dive operators has not been able to keep up with demand created by Asian tourists. Those in the adventure tourism industry should begin expanding their marketing efforts to young millennials seeking adventure.
Looking for Leisure
As Asian travelers begin traveling independently more options will become attractive to them. As many people around the world are traveling for the first time they naturally want to see the most famous of attractions, however tourists have begun branching out to new locations with less oppressing crowds and more time for relaxation.
Tropical islands, smaller cities, and quaint countryside villages are all becoming more attractive to the Asian tourist trying to beat the crowds.
Get Ready to Fall in Love with Old People
Older Asian tourists, who have traditionally been the largest customer base for group travel, have even begun traveling independently.
Although they are more price sensitive than the younger more adventurous Asian, they are still willing to spend during their travels. In general the tourism industry generally fails to cater to senior citizens, so this represents an opportunity for tourism marketers. By creating tailored services for seniors, you can create a lasting impression with an impressively large population of new independent travelers.
Shop till They Drop
One of the key stereotypes attributed to Asian tourists is that they absolutely love to shop, and this is kind of true. Asian tourists definitely enjoy shopping when they travel whether it be for luxury goods or souvenirs, however the shopping craze of earlier years has died down a bit.
In previous years, Asian tourists would travel abroad simply to purchase luxury goods, cosmetics, and other items for cheaper prices and from a distributor that they trust, however many Asian tourists have begun choosing more local destinations to do their shopping, like Hong Kong and South-East Asia.
Tour and hotel providers should be prepared to direct travelers to outlets and shopping malls where they can do their shopping. Providing maps with transportation options and other logistical information will surely leave a positive impression with your customers.
Don’t be too pushy though, as many travellers are suspicious of shopping opportunities being forced on them, as many tourism agencies in home countries receive commission from stores they recommend tourists to.
The Basics…And a Bit More
Asian Travelers don’t generally expect much more from their accommodation providers than others. However, there are a few inexpensive products you can stock your rooms with to ensure you don’t run into any complaints.
Asian tourists, who are accustomed to what Asian hotels provide, require a few extra items to make their stay comfortable, like slippers, toothbrushes, and access to hot drinking water.
Asian travelers rely heavily on the internet for information and media, so decent Wi-Fi is also essential. While Asian tourists won’t expect staff to speak Mandarin, Chinese, Thai, Indonesian, etc it will certainly improve the quality of their stay if they have questions or are looking for recommendations.
Creating a Asian brochure with FAQs could also be beneficial and help with the lack of Asian speaking staff. A WeChat QR code should also be placed around your hotel for additional information.
Wrap-up: Marketing to Asian Tourists
All in all it comes down to knowing your customers, and what they want to do. Having specialized packages for a variety of different customers is certainly beneficial in the tourism business, so be sure to not apply a one size-fits-all solution to providing for Asian customers.