Lastminute.com’s media brand has seen year-on-year revenue growth of 30% since it was relaunched last year as The Travel People.
It works by using the OTA’s data to create customer profiles and automatically provide targeted adverts for products and services that are deemed relevant.
Chief Commercial Officer Alessandra Di Lorenzo said there has now been 1,500 campaigns by more than 300 advertisers since The Travel People rebrand.
It taps into the 43 million monthly unique users of lastminute.com
Advertisers include tourism boards promoting their destinations as well as companies selling products which could be anything from flip flops to bikinis and action sports cameras.
Di Lorenzo told Travolution that the added revenue stream for the OTA means that it has become a “strategic focus” of lastminute.com although she would not reveal its turnover.
She added: “The business is moving in the direction of the content space and the results mean that advertisers are coming back because their products and services are getting in front of so many people.
“Advertising is a very profitable business and it complements our excellent booking engine and tries to inspire customers.”
She said that bookings to Malta via lastminute.com had gone up 300% in the last year, based on “inspirational content” that the country’s tourism authority had ran through The Travel People.
Using its data, the company suggested to customers things to do in Malta based on their preferences. It also analysed customers’ booking habits and suggested Malta as a destination similar to somewhere they had already booked or looked at online. Di Lorenzo stressed that this is done “in full respect of customer privacy”.
In the last year, lastminute.com has also launched a campaign with streaming company Spotify to try and inspire people to travel based on their favourite music.
Di Lorenzo said that The Travel People would not go as far as advertising competitor’s products in the low-conversion travel space to claw back its own advertising spend, as suggested by Amadeus earlier this year.
“It’s not something we’ve looked at but ultimately the data will decide,” she said.
Di Lorenzo said the success of The Travel People has led to lastminute.com sharing its expertise with other companies in and outside of the travel sector on a consultancy basis.