At the World Travel and Tourism Council Global Summit in Madrid this month, ‘Disruption’ was the theme. The audience was shouted awake by Gary Vaynerchuk, a passionate entrepreneur and investor that has ridden the Silicon Valley wave with phenomenal success. His message to us? Print advertising is dead. It’s about depth (engagement) and not breadth (coverage). Put 80% of your advertising budget in Facebook.

This was a bold opening statement that grabbed my attention; as you might expect I didn’t agree. As he explained his reasoning, however, I realised that Gary was on to something – it’s just that the solution he was advocating isn’t the only one, or perhaps even the best. His key argument focussed on just one key ingredient, which most platforms today cannot offer.

If an advertiser wants to see their campaign deliver stellar results, they need to look for one thing: ATTENTION. In our multi device world, this is ever harder to get. Pushed for time, constantly distracted, a hectic schedule to juggle – we can all identify ourselves in this description. Most advertising is an interruption on our daily routine, something to be ignored and skipped, if it is even seen at all.

When was the last time that you had the luxury of time to really focus on something? Gary believes that it was when you last absentmindedly scrolled through your Facebook feed looking for a moment of interest or entertainment. Perhaps so, but that’s still not exactly quality time with a brand message.

In reality, one of the few occasions that we have the luxury of quality time to really engage with a brand message is when we’re travelling. From continually checking your boarding card throughout your journey, to the moment of quiet relaxation that you get to indulge in once you take your seat on the plane, these are golden moments to get your attention.

Sealed off from the world with few other distractions, passengers can indulge in time to pursue their interests, thoughts and passions. Because you have the luxury of time, you can also give your full attention to each. Recent research from the Global Passenger Survey has shown that passengers engage in a number of activities in any one journey (of which reading the inflight magazine is the most popular: 97% of passengers have read the magazine in the last 12 months):



Brands might also be attracted to Facebook because it is a social media channel – not only can your advertising reach your audience, but they can interact with you. But why limit yourself to just one channel? We’ve seen first hand that content in the inflight magazine can inspire interaction; every day our magazines are tagged in tweets, Instagram photos, Facebook posts and more: see what they’ve been sharing with us this week, proving that we not only have our audience’s attention, but real engagement too.

The final reason that Gary gave for advocating Facebook advertising was the precision targeting available; if you want to reach females aged 21 – 30 in the UK, you can get them, and only them. Targeted advertising has revolutionised our industry, but it’s not only available on Facebook. Indeed, some platforms allow greater precision than most, by including valuable contextual information. Our Targeted Advertising Solution allows you to not only reach all 21 – 30 year old females, but also further target based on the route they’re flying. Young women travelling from the UK to a Mediterranean destination in the summer months? They’re more likely than most to be looking for summer beauty products, swimwear and fashion in advance of their trip. You can influence them as soon as they’ve booked their flights, on their booking confirmation emails, itineraries and boarding cards (which they generate up to a month in advance). Gary and I agree, the key ingredient that brands should be looking for when placing advertising is whether they will have their audience’s attention.

Gary believes the best place to get that is Facebook, but as I’ve shown, that’s not the only place, or necessarily even the best. Travel media allows you to target a very specific audience, using advanced contextual information that you can’t get anywhere else, in an environment where they have the time to give you their full attention, and even engage with your brand through all social channels (even as we increasingly stop using Facebook).