October 20, 2021


The travel folks

In age of scarcity, Traveloka goes from “hunting” to “harvesting” in its marketing rethink

9 min read

In age of scarcity, Traveloka goes from “hunting” to “harvesting” in its marketing rethink
by Yeoh Siew Hoon,
in Distribution,

Even although
item has taken centre phase through Covid-19, Traveloka’s Christian Suwarna
thinks that marketing is also getting its breakout moment in phrases of how the
Indonesian journey unicorn is rethinking its marketing method. 

With confined resources to invest, the main marketing officer and CEO, Expertise Enterprise Unit of Traveloka stated, “It’s been a interval of reflection.”

He stated, “There is compression of enterprise and we require to be quite fiscally disciplined. Now we search at the other facet of the coin – our very own customers that we have obtained so much, far more than 60m application downloads – and we search at ways we can engage with them with our very own capabilities.

“We are becoming
far more mindful and considerate in our marketing attempts and invest and funnelling
it in regions that would convey the most effect, developing our very own capabilities and
balancing it with 3rd celebration advertising platforms.

“I don’t consider we
can live absolutely devoid of them but it’s revisiting our marketing – we don’t
have money now, this is what we have, what can we do now? It is when you are most

He calls it a
shift from “hunting” to “harvesting”.

“When you are in
growth manner, you hunt for customers and at the time they are in your ecosystem, they
grow to be your crops and you farm them. Then you harvest them.

“Harvesting is a great time period but it’s quite difficult basically. How do you do it in these types of a way that you don’t upset your customers but continue to get your transactions at the cheapest price tag attainable?”

Christian Suwarna: “Harvesting is a great time period but it’s quite difficult basically. How do you do it in these types of a way that you don’t upset your customers but continue to get your transactions at the cheapest price tag attainable?” (Impression credit score: Traveloka)

Doubling down on payments, tests live streaming

Harvesting also relies on good and innovative use of information details and this is where Suwarna thinks Traveloka has an edge due to the fact because Covid struck and took down its journey enterprise, it’s been doubling down on all item capabilities, which includes monetary services.

“We’ve expended a
lot of energy in developing an conclusion-to-conclusion remedy for our monetary provider, Fork out
Afterwards, which is the electronic credit score card that sits inside our Traveloka Fork out. We
not long ago cooperated with two of Indonesia’s most important banking companies for our Fork out Afterwards
provider. This allows customers to not just use it in our ecosystem but also to
invest in in other ecosystems. This can help people to better approach their finances,
especially with Covid when some people are impacted far more economically.”

With Fork out Afterwards,
it is equipped to collect information on shopper getting and paying out practices. “This is a
quite one of a kind proposition that I don’t consider any other company has. We haven’t
had a likelihood to truly make perception of it nonetheless and which is the element I am energized

“It’s artwork and
science it’s a lot of prospect forward.”

Suwarna is also
energized about the possibility of live streaming as a new channel for both equally
inspiration and transaction. It has hosted Traveloka Way of living flash sale
strategies, applying live streaming and tying that with a flash sale part on its
social media.

“We are continue to
understanding about the medium and we have been rather satisfied with the effects. There’s
a lot of advancements we have to make but there are presently some benchmarks in
China. We imagine with fantastic marketing innovation with our companions, it will
assist encourage purchases.”

Vacation.com Group has led the way in applying live streaming to market journey in China and on August thirteen, it hosted a #TripFlashSale live stream on Fb and YouTube for customers in South-east Asia. The event ran for about seventy eight minutes and highlighted 20 collaborating lodges from 5 countries – Japan, Korea, Maldives, Fiji and New Zealand. Deep discount rates of up to fifty eight% were being provided.

Suwarna thinks
this downtime has given Traveloka the prospect to search at its owned media
room. “I consider there are loads of golden nuggets we haven’t uncovered perhaps
due to the fact in the previous, it was least difficult to just invest when you have money and when
you don’t have money, you get started to get innovative.”

As for how this
interval may possibly adjust the way it markets article-Covid, Suwarna stated, “When factors
return to standard, we possibly would get started experimenting. Particular companies
have started off to do their paid advertisements all over again, a single by a single. Some have not. We would
possibly just experiment to see what’s the reception around there.

“I don’t consider we will say, let’s slice a hundred% of our 3rd celebration invest – it’s just a quite vital component but it can also be quite high-priced as we have viewed. So we have to exercising prudence and experiment in a logical and accountable way right until enterprise stabilises.”

Questioned if this may well be a fantastic time to wean off the industry’s habit to Google, “I wouldn’t say that we would wean off Google absolutely – they are fantastic companions and they aided us increase to where we are now. They do have a quite solid and one of a kind proposition and it’s difficult to struggle that.”

Thoroughly clean Associates, coverage goods amongst new offerings to construct confidence

Suwarna stated that
item has grow to be a focal issue in the previous months “because we know that this
disaster will go and you want to get you prepared for the celebration when it
arrives, and which is by way of the goods.”

On August thirteen, it released Traveloka Thoroughly clean Associates programme to showcase the unique industry companions that have said their determination to health and fitness and basic safety benchmarks to construct confidence in customers.

Traveloka Thoroughly clean Associates programme showcases industry partners’ determination to health and fitness and basic safety benchmarks.

Its domestic
energy in Indonesia, in individual, really should also give it a aggressive
gain given that it is domestic recovery that will direct the way out of this
storm .

“We’re grateful
that we have been investing our time in deepening our footing. We have a
plethora of community stock that we have gathered in second and 3rd tier
metropolitan areas that, in the previous, would not have been huge locations. But now with
domestic journey growing, they have grow to be locations.”

It has also formulated coverage goods that are community for Indonesians. The challenge although is to come across an coverage item that will protect Covid. “We are continue to in conversations. The difficulty is to come across what is the right premium that would market,” stated Suwarna.

Cautiously optimistic “but the manage is not in our hands”

Suwarna stated that when the disaster first hit, “we were being rather taken aback by the effect. At a single issue, it dropped to pretty much none. We just stopped looking at it. But all-around June, factors started off to get better in Indonesia and Vietnam.”

But now that
Vietnam, which was primary the way in recovery, 
has stumbled, Suwarna stated, “We are not able to struggle the macro condition, right?
It is the exact same in Indonesia. Every single 7 days, we see recovery but we are continue to much
from where we were being in 2019. We’re grateful for the recovery, we’re cautiously
optimistic but as we were being reminded with Vietnam, the manage is not in our

As with other
domestic markets, it is lodges that are recovering first, specially these in
proximity to major metropolitan regions, and inside driving length. “People
acquiring away for quick outings immediately after currently being confined to their residences for a although.
Bali’s recovery is a bit slower, it’s continue to comparatively vacant on specific major
strips,” he stated.

Suwarna also
anticipates that enterprise journey will get for a longer time to get better. “Even the
authorities is continue to thinking about whether they really should restart their very own
staff motion for enterprise, in addition there is a lot of behaviour all-around on-line

Suwarna stated
although on-line meetings have proven to be a practical different, “maybe at the
government level, where you are just monitoring”, it’s difficult when “you have to
charge, and assault, and collaborate”.

“You require the electricity and which is missing from on-line meetings.”

Expertise worst hit, $250m fund raise major improve of confidence

The Expertise
facet of the enterprise, which he heads, has been worst hit. “Many of our
suppliers have shut down, some briefly, some forever. The far more
resilient types with better harmony sheets have started off to get better.

“We’ve been
doing the job intently with companions that have reopened, and doing the job on sales and
marketing strategies with them. With the reopening of various locations, and
huge attractions, the outside types are recovering better than indoor types.”

Questioned if
Traveloka would be building its very own goods and ordeals in line with
changing client tastes, Suwarna stated, “We don’t have any drive to operate
our very own ordeals at the moment. We want to focus on our main enterprise of
lodges and flights, and also we don’t have ample electricity.”

The the latest fund
raise of US$250m has been a major improve of confidence to the crew, he stated.
“The funding is to reinforce our journey and way of life proposition. Vacation and
way of life is what we market to the customers. Economical services is a one of a kind
enabler that we present to the customers as effectively. We have to truly focus on
it, it’s a new enterprise model. It is appealing and it’s got a lot of its very own

Questioned how
demanding it would be for Traveloka to switch from a significant-growth,
significant-paying out tradition to a single all-around constraints, he stated, “There’s no other
alternative right? We have to do it. We have taken this time to truly replicate and
ponder and perform on our aged self which, possibly in a standard predicament, we
would be so active just fighting all-around.

“We are certainly much better immediately after all of this, from a capacity standpoint, maturity, monetary prudence, self-discipline.

“We will be equipped
to do it. The mindset has modified. Even although we are so blessed to get the
vote of confidence with the fund raise and we’re so satisfied, it doesn’t indicate that
we will go again to the way we lived in advance of, due to the fact then that usually means that we
didn’t increase. But we are increasing at the moment, understanding from our problems.”

Individually, he
stated, “I’m basically grateful that I got to experience this. I come to feel that for me
personally, it was a source of growth. Understanding how to deal with this in a interesting-headed
manner, not currently being sucked into the predicament now, but looking forward to the
other facet of the disaster.

“As a crew, we are much better, our collaboration is much better. We’re just energized to see the market rebounding but it will go on its very own time. We will test to encourage it but the total macro predicament will dictate the time.”

Highlighted graphic credit score: f.ield_of_eyesight/Getty Visuals

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