Social media in hospitality, is it changing the business fundamentally?
Jesse van der Heiden
Present day, social media are fundamentally changing the way tourists and travellers search, read, trust and as well as find information about tourist destinations. Furthermore, social network applications for e.g. trip Advisor, Facebook and Pinterest allows guests to participate in business operation and functions. This means that, tourists and travellers provide a huge amount of information about their travel experiences. Many organizations use social media as a tool to connect to millions of potential guests. Therefore, this paper ...view middle of the document...
The opinions could have a positive or negative impact, and could be a problem what the hotel industry has to face. (Thevenot,2007)
Impact of social media on customer’s behaviour
There is a growing importance and influence of social media on the decision making of potential travellers and tourists. First of all, travellers could comment the hotel where they stay, give their ideas on new activities to do, engage with other travellers and create new travel experiences. Furthermore, new growing technologies such as smartphones and tablets allow travellers to use social media during and after their journey. Trends in technology will lead to greater use and therefore, more impact. Thus, all these aspects influence the decision making of travellers and is therefore, very important for the hotel industry.
According to the MOA (motivation, opportunity and ability) model by MacInnis and Jaworski (1989), research has proven that social media has a big influence on customers behaviour. The model displays that most travellers use social media and always share places with friend and colleagues the places they visit. Also, travellers strongly agree that social media is easy to learn and even more easy to use. The results of this study also suggest that the hotels should be thankful towards the tourist’s participation in terms of photos and videos about their products. Positive recognition is valuable for a hotel and as a result, the value of their products could increase.
Kinds of social media in the hospitality industry
The hospitality industry seems to acknowledge the importance of social networks such as, Trip Advisor, Yelp, Kayak and Facebook, it has become essential for hotels to embrace social media. Trip Advisor ‘’ is the worlds largest travel site’’, enables travellers to look up for information, reviews and opinions about the hotels. Furthermore, Trip Advisor is reaching 315 million monthly visitors, and more than 200 million reviews and comments covering more than 4,5 million accommodations and restaurants. Messing, (2015)
As of March 2015, Facebook has 1415 million users and is the market leader in social media. Facebook is a fantastic avenue to stay visible and successful by making a face online. In Facebook, hotels are a brand and require pages of information about the hotel. The content must have the right exposure, motivation and awareness. With this in place, the hotel can increase followers for the brand.
Radisson Blue Hotel had a recent campaign on Facebook. The campaign was...