Advertising has changed dramatically over the 25 years that I have been in the business — the tactics available to marketers, the amount of data behind every strategy, the media options, the blurring of lines between advertising and other forms of communication including journalism. One thing, however, has not changed. Advertising works. It always has and it always will.

Consumers can still be influenced. Indeed, they genuinely want to be. A 2016 survey showed that 71% of consumers preferred ads tailored to their interests and shopping habits. One of the main reasons consumers want targeted advertising is because it cuts down on irrelevant ads. Sure, we're all bombarded with advertising messages but instead of revolting against it, consumers simply want it to be more personalized to their lives.

Since there is no sign of reversing the trend of being inundated with ads, this brings me to a second undeniable truth. The quality and creativity of advertising is more important than ever. Not only are people seeing a ton of ads they are seeing a ton of relevant ads. Rising above the competition is more difficult yet even more important than ever. It's not enough just to put your message in front of consumers. Your message has to capture attention. It has to make people say "wow." It has to inspire or at least intrigue. Especially if the product is travel, which is sold on the basis of emotions and unique experiences.

Thanks to all those advancements I mentioned before — the changing media landscape, new methods of sharing marketing messages and the ability to target select demographics more precisely — the people seeing your advertising messages are well-qualified likely buyers. That means it's worth the effort and investment to wow them and ensure that they choose your destination.


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