When you're lastminute.com and others have been stealing your thunder in the same-day/late-deals market what do you do?
Find ways to differentiate your product/brand and add value of course. Easier said than done.
Lastminute's head of innovation William Beckler says one of his own success metrics is to count the number of times he tries new things and they fail.
"If I'm not failing enough, then I'm not doing risky projects that are covering new things."
However, a recent trial with experience marketplace Tripbod seems to have gone off well enough for Sabre-owned lastminute to be now seeking full integration into its offering.
Tripbod helps travellers plan trips by hooking them up with locals who offer tours and experiences.
Beckler describes the Tripbod product as complicated to deliver to customers without huge expense but a post-purchase email trial saw people click through three times as much as other campaigns. And, it cost lastminute 'next to nothing'.
He adds that successful 'social' travel companies are the ones helping customers connect with each other as opposed to connecting with the brand.
Tripbod is an interesting company having initially launched as a local itinerary planning service and relaunching as an experiences marketplace in late 2011. The company also received seed funding a year ago.
The company is undergoing some further development work with full details to be revealed soon.
Tnooz has requested further details from Lastminute on the Tripbod deal.
Beckler was speaking at the Travel Technology Initiative's 'Lets Get Personal' conference in London.