Restaurants and other businesses in the hospitality sector need to have a clear understanding of how to use social media channels for their potential benefit if they wish to stay competitive within the modern business environment.
The role of social media plays a significant role in the consumer travel experience. In a recent study, it was found that the majority of the survey’s participants (52%) had changed their future travel plans after exploring their trip via social media.
Approximately 85% of travellers use their mobile phones while on vacation or travelling, and 52% of Facebook users admitted that their companions’ vacation photographs (posted on Facebook) had impacted their choice of destination.
A chain of three and four-star hotels located all through the UK conducted a study that offered some interesting data on how social media has impacted the hospitality business. Here is a look at some of the study’s highlights:
- In the majority of metropolitan cities, Google’s search volume for hotels has dropped by over 70% in the last 6 years alone. In increasing droves, customers are turning to websites like Expedia, TripAdvisor, and Kayak.
- 32% of travellers in the US, and 22% of non-U.S. travellers, regularly blog about their voyaging experiences.
- 30% of voyagers in 2015 used mobile apps to find deals on hotels. Similarly, 29% of travellers in 2015 used mobile apps to find the best deals on flights.
The Trust Factor
- 92% of travellers express that they trust earned media, similar to recommendations from relatives and companions or word of mouth, more than any other kind of advertising.
- On the other side of the spectrum, just 47% of travellers worldwide express that they trust newspaper, radio, and magazine advertisements.
- 71% of worldwide consumers say that online customer reviews are their next option for trusted advertising.
Proving that social media exercises a significant impact on hospitality bookings, of the people who admitted using social media platforms to research their travel plans, a simple 48% ended up picking their plans.
- 33% changed their lodging reservations.
- 7% changed their whole vacation destination.
- 10% changed the hotel they had initially planned to stay at.
- 5% changed their airline reservations.
The Power Of The Review
- 40% of customers post reviews about the dining experience.
- 46% of voyagers post reviews about their travel accommodations post-vacation.
- 76% of Facebook users have posted photos of their vacation to their own Facebook pages.
- 55% of the pages an individual “likes” on Facebook will more than likely be specific to a vacation.
The use of social media has impacted the hospitality business in multiple ways, but it also offers various benefits. For instance, it offers an effective medium for reaching a global audience. Similarly, it works 24 hours per day and 7 days a week, overcoming time zone contrasts. It is accessible by people who have internet access and offers ubiquitous versatility for intelligent trades with consumers.
Although the method of communication for correspondence has changed, online social media is presently the name for showcasing the hospitality sector. How does the social media presence of your business measure up?