|From Likes to Leads: Cruise Agents, Social Media & the Impact of Emerging Technologies.|
Monday, 18th June 2012
A new study examines the impact of social media on the cruise industry and has surveyed representatives at cruise lines as well as more than 1,000 cruise specialists, inquiring about their current engagement with social technologies.
The study, which was prepared by the independent research firm Schwartz Consulting Partners, also asked respondents to make predictions about their future engagement with social media.
Some of the study's key findings include:
With more than 641 million members and a 35% annual growth rate, Facebook has become the second largest source of Web leads for cruise specialists after Google. Facebook business pages have been most effective for marketing and brand-building purposes, specifically, in the areas of:
- 72% of cruise specialists receive as many or more bookings from social media channels than agents who maintain their own Web sites.
- 54% of agencies actively use social networks to generate new business.
- Almost 20% of agents with clients younger than 45 years old receive approximately 33% of their leads from social media sources.
Additionally, many cruise lines are moving ahead with plans to develop mobile applications for use during the pre-booking, pre-cruise and on-board phases.
- Customer engagement
- Posting offers or discounts
- Promoting new products/services
- Providing travel advice
- Allowing travelers to share their experiences
- Offering customer service
While there is still an age gap between the legacy cruiser and avid social networker, trends indicate that as Generation Xers and Millennials age, cruising will appear on their radar. The most successful cruise specialists will be armed and ready with the appropriate technology tools to entice this new customer.
The full report is now available for FREE: