Social media plays the largest role in inspiring travel and in the travel experience itself, according to a study commissioned by Text100 Global Communications examining the importance of social media and mobile technology during the four major stages of consumers’ travel decision-cycle: inspiration, decision, purchase and experience. The study, which was conducted by Redshift Research among 4,600 consumers in 13 countries, found 63 percent of survey respondents consider recommendations by friends and family the number one factor to inspire travel, and social channels make sharing among friends and family easy.
Other findings included:
- Of people surveyed under the age of 34, 87% use Facebook for travel inspiration.
- More than half surveyed also use Twitter, Pinterest and other social media platforms for inspiration.
- In the experience stage, 68% use their mobile devices to stay in touch with friends and family while on vacation — more than taking photos (43%) or checking the news (20%)
- In Asia-Pacific, more than 70% of travelers have used social media to inspire their holidays and base their eventual choices on friends’ recommendations (52%) and convenience (42%) — higher than other regions.
- In the United States, 58% of respondents under the age of 34 use social media to inspire destination decisions, while 37% of respondents consider travel blogger reviews first when making travel decisions.
- In Europe, 33% of travelers rely on online travel blog reviews to make initial decisions about travel destinations.
“The study suggests there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to engaging travelers in all areas worldwide,” said Text100 Global CEO Aedhmar Hynes. “Today’s vacationer bases their decisions on far more digital, mobile and physical touch-points than ever before, therefore, companies need to be consistent in communicating their core values via authentic audience engagement.”