Cyprus Mail

Cypriot hotels need a better social media strategy, PwC says

Hotels in Cyprus recognise the importance of social media and hold a significant presence but there are considerable margins for improvement, a new survey revealed on Wednesday.

PwC Cyprus presented the findings, saying that if the hotels took move advantage of social media, it could provide substantive value for both them and their visitors.  The survey was titled ‘Capturing the Social Media use in the Cyprus Hotel Industry’ and were presented in Limassol.

The aim of the survey, which was carried out in cooperation with the University of Nicosia, was to map out the use of social media in Cyprus’ hotel industry, appraising the hotels’ overall utilisation of the tools (high, medium, low).

According to the general findings, hotels in coastal districts use social media more than hotels in the mountains or town centres. Overall, hotels that have absolutely no presence on social media, or in contrast are present in all social media, each stand at 9 per cent.

Facebook is by far the most popular social media site used by hotels. According to the survey, many hotels use many of its advanced tools, an observation that suggests a greater degree of development of the specific medium compared to the others.

The study also records a tendency to make better use of TripAdvisor. This trend is also followed by hotels that do not have a significant presence on other social media sites.

It also recorded a clear link between the classification of a hotel and its use of social media. The higher the hotel’s classification, the greater the use of social media, the study found.

“It is worth noting that 74 per cent of 4* hotels ranked in the ‘medium’ category, which leads to the conclusion that this classification of hotels may use social media to a satisfactory extent, but need to manage them more strategically for better results,” PwC said.

“It appears many hotels do not implement a social media strategy. According to the study, 37 of the 48 hotels that ranked in the ‘low’ category received a score of 0-25 per cent, which shows the lack of a strategy.”

It added that many hotels belonging to corporate groups also tended to adopt the social media strategy of their parent company, instead of managing their own individual pages. This approach, according to the study, limits the scope of coverage of said hotels’ social media pages.

The second part of the study provided a more targeted examination of hotel managers’ views and ambitions as regards their hotels’ use of social media. It emerged through their answers that the main reason hotels use social media is for promotional reasons and in order to improve existing products/services by recording comments posted by customers.

Presenting the findings, PwC Cyprus Partner, in charge of Hospitality & Leisure Group, Petros Petrakis, said: “The benefits that social media can bring to hotel businesses are multiple because they constitute simple, low cost and extremely effective marketing and promotion tools.”

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