Social Media Research

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Haley Lindsey
Social Media Research Paper
Stacey Smith
March 15, 2013

Social Media Research Paper
I. Description and History
Social media are internet sites, where people are able to roam freely and are able to associate with others using a mix of words, pictures, video and audio. These websites enable users the ability to upload content and engage in conversations with others. There are many different forms of this including blogs, mircoblogs, forums, message boards, social networks, wikis virtual worlds, social bookmarking, tagging and news, writing communities, digital storytelling and scrapbooking and data, content, image and video sharing, podcast portals and collective intelligence. (Curtis, 2011) Some of these websites are well known; Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Twitter, Youtube and Word Press.

Social media was first heard about in 1969 when CompuServe was the first major commercial internet that the public could use. The first internet connection and was known as dial-up. Dial-up was huge through the mid-1990s. The first email was sent and delivered in 1971. In 1978, two Chicago computer hobbyists invented the bulletin board system, which allowed them to posted meetings times and make announcements that their friends could see. 1978 was the first year that campuses were able to connect with one another. In 1984, the World Wide Web was created and now is a part of AT&T. As it goes on the internet becomes more and more popular by each year that it’s up. 1998 was a big year and that was because Google opens as a major internet search engine. In 2003 the wireless router dropped prices and became the more popular route of using the internet. In 2004, Facebook hit the market and continues to grow to this day. II. Social Media and the Tourism Industry

Social media fits well with the tourism industry. Social media has helped the consumer get faster deals for the industry. Here are some statistics for social media and the industry together. MOBILE

* By 2015, 9 out of 10 consumers will have a mobile subscription. * 29% of travelers have used mobile apps to find flight deals. * 30% have used mobile apps to find hotel deals.
* 15% have downloaded mobile apps specific to upcoming vacations. * 85% of leisure travelers use their smartphone while abroad. * 72% past vacation photos on a social network while still on vacation * 46% check in to a location while on vacation

* 70% update their Facebook status while traveling

CONSUMER TRUST
* 92% of consumers around the world say they trust earned media, such as word-of-mouth and recommendations from friends and family above all other forms of advertising. * 70% of global consumers say online consumer reviews are the second most trusted form of advertising. * Only 47% of consumers around the world say they trust paid television.

REVIEWS

* Post-vacation, 46% of travelers post hotel reviews
* 40% post activity/attraction reviews
* 40% post restaurant reviews
* 76% post vacation photos to a social network
* 55% “liked” Facebook pages specific to a vacation

INFLUENCE
Social media has a huge influence on travel bookings. Of those who used social media to research travel plans, only 48% stuck with their original travel plans. * 33% changed their hotel
* 10% switched resorts
* 10% changed agent/operator/website
* 7% holidayed in a different country
* 5% switched airlines
(Santos, 2013)

III. College Students using social media
College students want what’s easiest and fast for them to get things done. So why not just book their spring break, Christmas break, and/or summer plans through StudentCity or EF College Break. Both of these websites are easy access to help students plan their breaks. The websites have everything that you need to know about your destination. Now the only downfall of the websites is that they only have certain locations that you can choose from. These...
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