Social media has had an impact on our daily lives, including the tourism industry. The consumers frequently rely on social networking sites to discover more about their potential holidays, to make decisions and to plan their new trips. We share all our travel experiences, down to the smallest detail, but we also share out opinions about the hotels, restaurants, airlines or even car rental services. All of these have an impact on the business and on the decision of future travelers.
I cannot stress on enough how important is social media to tourism, especially because it is part of the initial decision making process. Here are five ways tourism has been impacted by social media.
- Travel Research Transformed: online reviews, 89% of millennials plan travel activities based on content posted by their peers online. Crowd sourcing websites like TripAdvisor and HolidayCheck have a major impact on the decision of travelling
- Rise in social sharing: people always likes sharing photos and videos from their holidays, but with social media the reach is even wider, and peers get inspiration from other’s holidays
- Enhanced customer service: through data mining, hotels now can find out what guests really want and deliver those services in their establishments
- Reshaping travel agencies: the ease of service booking and the availability of information online
- Changing loyalty programs: all of you should know by now that acquiring new customers is more expensive than retaining existing ones. The guest knows their influence while posting their comments and opinions online, therefore they feel entitled to the social media as a way to get as much feedback as possible and utilize it as a source of improvement
The following trends in social media were identified by Dunloe Hotel:
- Online reputation management. ORM is the process of managing the negative reviews on social media
- Social media as a customer service channels: we all know that the guest post before, during and after their holiday, therefore hoteliers have a chance to contact the guests all the time, even after they finished their holiday
- Inbound marketing: attracting customers with pictures, videos, newsletters and so on; posting them on your social media accounts
- Mobile apps, you need to embrace this opportunity and offer your guests unique services
Social media has made a huge impact on all industries not only tourism. Moreover, 52% changed their travel plans after consulting social media, 85% of travelers use their phones whilst abroad and 52% of Facebook users say that they get inspired for future travel plans from their friends’ pictures and posts.