Study: Incentive Travel Still a Key Motivator

Chicago — Aug. 7

Reward and recognition go hand in hand. The Site International Foundation and the Incentive Travel Council (ITC) of the Incentive Marketing Association have just released the final portion of their study, “Incentive Travel: The Participant’s Viewpoint,” which revealed that more than 86 percent of respondents feel recognized by earning motivational travel.

The study took an in-depth look at what makes incentive travel reward programs motivational, meaningful and memorable. Researchers surveyed more than 1,000 qualifiers and non-qualifiers of incentive travel programs. The study explored participant attitudes toward their companies, colleagues and other types of motivational program awards, revealing:

• 95.5 percent of qualifiers said they were extremely motivated, motivated or a little motivated to earn the travel reward.
• 90.7 of non-earners were similarly motivated even though they did not receive the award.
• 72.4 percent of earners reported an increased feeling of loyalty toward the company that provided the award.

The two organizations developed this study to deliver a deeper understanding of what resonates with motivational program participants. Today’s incentive travel programs provide diverse objectives ranging from attracting and retaining talent, fostering teamwork and encouraging safety, to building morale, loyalty and sales to realize performance.

Gathering participants’ input about program design elements — destination, schedule, duration, etc. — and understanding what participants take away — time with leadership and peers, an experience they would not have on their own, etc. — are both important considerations to ensure an incentive travel program is motivational to participants.

In addition, creating a memorable experience relies on the participant’s emotional level of intensity. Measurement should to go beyond the initial favorable/unfavorable response to include items like how the program influenced behaviors before, during and after the program; how well the program met participant expectations; and how well the program supported the organization’s vision, mission, values and culture by better connecting with program participants.

Source: the Site International Foundation