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BizReport : Social Marketing : July 28, 2016

Travel, hospitality brands below par in social engagement

Travel brands are falling short on social media, according to recent research from Lithium Technologies, with a failure to engage and a focus on just one social network.

by Helen Leggatt

The travel and tourism industry is one of the world's largest industries with almost $7.6 trillion in revenue based on 1.1 billion travelers in 2014. Increasingly, those travelers are turning to social media to interact with travel and hospitality brands yet, compared with other industries, those brands are distinctly "middle of the pack" for social engagement.

Lithium Technologies' 'State of Social Engagement 2016' delves into how Fortune 100 travel and hospitality brands interact with travelers across social media. It found that, while those brands do have a social media presence, their performance in terms of engagement is below par.

Not only to brands fail to respond quickly to travelers' posts, they also fail to employ interactive engagement tools such as polls or contests. Furthermore, when travelers turn to social for support and assistance they are more often than not provided with sales information. Among the brands surveyed, Airbnb, Marriott and Uber had the highest engagement on online communities.

The report also found that travel and hospitality brands "are solely focused on a single channel to interact - usually Twitter - neglecting travelers across other popular social networks".

"As an avid traveler who's always on-the-go, it's a personal mission for me to help travel and hospitality brands hit the nail on the head when it comes to engaging with their customers," said Katy Keim, CMO of Lithium Technologies. "The results of our study show that the brands using the right technology and a fully-integrated digital strategy to connect with customers are the most successful in driving customer satisfaction and loyalty."

Tags: research, social media, travel brands

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