On October 17, Resonance’s Consumer Research Manager, Michael Norris, interviewed Meituan Dianping’s CMO Steven Shu as part of ITB Asia. ITB Asia is Asia’s largest travel exhibition, featuring international destinations, airlines, hotel chains, tourism bureaus and service providers from around the world.
This was Steven’s first interview about Meituan Travel following Meituan Dianping’s IPO on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in September, where it raised US$4.2 billion.
Michael’s interview with Steven focused on Meituan Travel, Meituan Dianping’s travel services arm. During the interview, Steven spoke about Meituan Travel’s impressive growth and affinity with younger travelers.
- Unbeknownst to most industry outsiders, Meituan’s hotel reservation and booking services are at an equivalent scale to Ctrip and Qunar.
- Meituan’s 大众点评 app is used by a third of China’s overseas travelers while they are abroad, and is the most frequently-opened app for overseas travelers, after WeChat and Google Maps.
- This edge, coupled with Meituan Travel’s youthful user base, makes it a strong competitor to present industry leaders.
- Steven also shared his team’s observations about trending travel destinations among Chinese millennials. Taking transit times and currency out of the equation, one of the key factors affecting an overseas destination’s popularity with Chinese travelers is food and beverage.
- Steven emphasized the need for cities to put their best foot forward when it comes to creating and amplifying buzz around a city’s food and beverage scene.