The Impact of Social Media Marketing on Tourism

Introduction

Lebanon’s area is ranked 170th in the world (CIA, 2014). It’s smaller than how big Connecticut, one of the smallest states in in America. Moreover, Lebanon is one of the few democratic countries in the Middle East region. Regarding its economy, Lebanon is just a free market economy and includes a lengthy tradition of laissez-faire economics. Along with its coastal location on the Eastern Mediterranean coast, Lebanon is known as whilst the central’window’of the Middle East to Europe, North Africa, and the remaining world. Due to this, its economy has gone through some very prosperous times and was even once called the’Paris’of the Middle East prior to the nation’s 15 year-long bloody civil war which ended in 1990.

Also, although Lebanon is tiny, it is also one of the very most diverse nations in the world. Christians, Muslims, Druze, and other minority sects are spread all over the small nation and even Lebanon’s political system is dependant on sectarian power sharing.

However, this diversity had played a pivotal role in the nation’s problems. This diversity was a necessary condition of the country’s sectarian civil war and currently plays an essential role in its political paralysis, although other factors (mainly foreign) are to blame as well. There is currently no acting President and the country’s rival political parties keep bickering and preventing rather than facilitating the country’s development.

Furthermore, Lebanon’s proximity to Israel has caused it to be a foreign policy/proxy battleground for foreign nations, each using Lebanon for its selfish ends.

The sad political realities of the united states have significantly hurt the country’s economy. Also, since Lebanon is just a service-based economy, this particular sector has taken the biggest hit.

Tourism plays a substantial role in the nation’s economy. In line with the Lebanese Ministry of Economy & Trade (MOET), “Tourism has for ages been among Lebanon’s leading economic sectors” (Economic Research Unit, 2010).

Furthermore, The World Travel & Tourism Council estimated that the travel & tourism sector in Lebanon contributed over $4 billion dollars in 2013 (World Travel & Tourism Council, 2014).

The travel & tourism sector constructed about 10% of the economy in 2012 but that share dropped to 9% in 2013 (ibid, p. 14). This is as a result of political situation in the united states along with several other factors. Moreover, how many tourist arrivals in the united states kept decreasing from 2011 to 2013.

Because the tourism industry has been somewhat floundering in recent years, the space for error becomes really small for businesses in this industry. smm panel The political & economic situations are squeezing tourist-related (TR) businesses in Lebanon. Which means these businesses are forced to accomplish more to make up for increasing losses (or decreasing profits) and with fewer resources. There is no telling when the political & economic situation in Lebanon will improve especially because the civil war in neighboring Syria shows no signs of abating.

There are lots of methods Lebanese TR businesses can adapt during these times such as for example implementing downsizing policies and cutting back on marketing & advertising budgets. When economic recessions and tough times affect businesses, the first things to have eliminated are usually marketing budgets. But especially since TR businesses need to do more marketing to make up for lost businesses, this may possibly not be a good idea.

One treatment for this problem is always to take advantage of Social Media Marketing strategies since they cost little to no resources, ideal for the existing economic situation in Lebanon. Social media marketing allows TR businesses to overcome obstacles of limited budgets and decreased business.

Problem Statement

During recent years, the positive aftereffect of social media on business has been extremely high (Kaplan et al., 2010; Stelzner, 2010; Treem & Leonardi, 2012, p. 143; Baker & Green, 2014).

Moreover, Facebook and Twitter fans of a specific brand are much prone to recommend and buy from these brands than non-fans (Cruz & Mendelsohn, 2011). But, we don’t need to make sure of social media’s impact on business through research studies. For social media users, such as over 30% of the world, this fact is known. More and more businesses are inserting Social Media marketing tools into their marketing strategies and, in some instances, have even become an important part of their overall business strategy.

Naturally, you might expect that Lebanese businesses would quickly adopt Social Media Marketing as a key role in their overall marketing strategies but this is simply not the case. When it comes to the Middle East and especially Lebanon, the region is far behind the West in social media usage. Not only this, when it comes to businesses mixed up in tourism industry, there’s much room for growth. Little investment in technology is keeping tourist businesses away from maximizing marketing opportunities written by social media.

The Lebanese tourism industry is not taking advantage of social media marketing tactics even although advantages to do so can be apparent. This presents a great problem especially because the economy is going through a very rough time.

Moreover, Lebanese TR businesses and businesses in Lebanon in general aren’t adopting social media tools as they should. This presents a massive problem in the waste of resources along with significant missed opportunities as a larger market may be reached via social media enabling businesses that adopt social media marketing tools gain a better possibility of success and prosperity.

Purpose of the research

The fruits and advantages of social media marketing tools usually takes significant time to come about in Lebanon if we are ignorant of the factors which have generated the prevention of widespread social media marketing adoption.

Also, provided that no study adopts the problem of effectively implementing a social media marketing campaign in the Lebanese context, many TR businesses may be lost even when they decide to adopt social media marketing tools.

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