Social media has become an integral part of people’s lives, and it plays a significant role in shaping travel decisions. With the Maldives being a top travel destination, it is essential to understand how social media influences potential travelers. This article will explore the impact of key social media platforms – Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok – on travel intent and bookings for the Maldives, offering valuable insights for hoteliers and marketers, including recommendations on maximizing return on ad spend (ROAS) and selecting the right influencers.
Social Media as a Dominant Travel Influence
In the past 90 days, social media platforms have emerged as the most important travel influence sources. Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok collectively account for 32% of travel influence factors, surpassing traditional travel agents (20%), online search (16%), and recommendations from friends and families (14%). This highlights the power of these platforms in inspiring people to discover and explore new destinations.
Instagram’s Influence on Travel Decisions
Instagram, with its visually appealing content, holds a 13% share in travel influence. It is particularly popular among the 24-38 age group, who are more likely to book a trip after seeing an Instagram post or ad. The average daily rate (ADR) for those booking after being influenced by Instagram is slightly under $500. Furthermore, travelers who find resorts on Instagram are most likely to book on an online travel agency (OTA) (58%) or directly on the website (26%).
Maximizing ROAS on Instagram: To achieve a high ROAS on Instagram, hoteliers should focus on creating visually stunning content that showcases the unique features of their property. They should also utilize Instagram Stories, Reels, and targeted ads to reach potential guests in their ideal demographic. Collaborating with travel influencers with high engagement rates and a dedicated following can further amplify the hotel’s reach and credibility.
Facebook’s Role in Shaping Travel Choices
Facebook is the second most significant social media platform, with an 11% share in travel influence. It caters to a broad age spectrum, from 18 to 65+, with hotel budgets increasing by age. The ideal target audience on Facebook is above 37 years old. The platform also boasts the highest ADR, with an average of $704 for those booking after seeing a resort on Facebook. Users inspired by Facebook are more likely to book via a travel agent (42%) or an OTA (26%), and only 18% book directly with the hotel.
Maximizing ROAS on Facebook: To maximize ROAS on Facebook, hoteliers should create engaging content that appeals to their target audience, such as virtual tours, special offers, and customer testimonials. Utilizing Facebook’s robust ad targeting options will ensure that the ads are seen by potential guests most likely to book. Collaborating with travel bloggers and influencers with a strong following in the hotel’s target demographic can also be beneficial.
TikTok’s Emergence as a Travel Inspiration Platform
TikTok, with its short and engaging video content, has an 8% share in travel influence. It is highly popular among the 26-36 age group, who are most likely to book after seeing TikTok ads or content. The ADR for bookings influenced by TikTok is slightly under $500. TikTok users are most likely to book on an OTA (55%) and direct (28%).
Maximizing ROAS on TikTok: To achieve high ROAS on TikTok, hoteliers should create entertaining and shareable content that showcases the property’s unique features, such as behind-the-scenes videos, guest experiences, and local attractions.
The growing influence of social media platforms, such as Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok, on travel decisions, cannot be ignored. As these platforms continue to inspire people to explore new destinations like the Maldives, hoteliers, and marketers must understand the nuances of each platform and adapt their strategies accordingly. By targeting the right age groups, geographies, and booking patterns, hoteliers can effectively leverage the power of social media to boost their bookings and increase their ADR.
With the insights provided in this article, hoteliers can make well-informed decisions and create tailored marketing campaigns to attract potential guests and drive bookings. Embracing the power of social media can significantly enhance the visibility of a hotel or resort, ultimately resulting in a more successful and profitable business.