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Hotel social media marketing: a study on message strategy and its effectiveness

Xi Y. Leung (Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas, USA)
Billy Bai (William F. Harrah College of Hotel Administration, University of Nevada Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA)
Mehmet Erdem (William F. Harrah College of Hotel Administration, University of Nevada Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA)

Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology

ISSN: 1757-9880

Article publication date: 12 June 2017

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to develop a typology of social media messages to compare the effectiveness of different message strategies.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 1,837 messages from 12 hotel brand Facebook pages were content-analyzed. Applying both correspondence analysis and multivariate analysis of variance, the study compared message strategy across hotel-scale levels and explored the effectiveness of different message strategies.

Findings

A typology of four-type message format and six-type message content was developed. The picture message was the best message format. Product, brand and involvement messages were shown to be more effective than information, reward and promotion messages. Promotion message was the least effective message content type.

Research limitations/implications

The major limitation of this study is the generalizability owing to the sample selection process. There is also the limitation on exclusion of control variables, selection of the three effectiveness measures and evolving social media technology.

Practical implications

The typology of Facebook message strategy developed in the study provided guidelines for hotel marketers to create messages on Facebook pages and track effectiveness. Hotels should also take full advantage of the picture format and product, brand and involvement contents.

Originality/value

This study created a new typology of social media message strategy consisting of two dimensions. It also provided empirical evidence to support the application of message strategy theory in the hotel social media marketing area.

Keywords

Citation

Leung, X.Y., Bai, B. and Erdem, M. (2017), "Hotel social media marketing: a study on message strategy and its effectiveness", Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology, Vol. 8 No. 2, pp. 239-255. https://doi.org/10.1108/JHTT-02-2017-0012

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited