THE EFFECTIVENESS OF SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING FOR RESORTS TARGETING FAMILIES IN KLANG VALLEY Abstract Chapter 1: Social marketing is an important part of digital marketing in business through which management are able to communicate with their customers directly and targets them. The resorts of the Klang Valley also used different platforms of SM to target families for vacations and promote their business. In this part Researchers are set aims and objective of the study in this part and make research questions to understand the effectiveness of SM marketing for resorts to target families in vacation to get good business advantages. Management of resorts is needed to give advertisements about resorts and need to interact with consumers to get good customer response. Chapter 2: The following chapter of the dissertation shed light on review of research related literature. The following chapter illustrates detailed concepts about the independent and dependent variables that are associated with the research. In the later part of the following research, various theoretical frameworks such as theory of reasoned actions is illustrated to understand the effectiveness of social media marketing. In the later part of the following chapter, details about SMM and various challenges faced by marketers while implementing SMM strategies are illustrated. After that, the role of social media in customer targeting and its impact of purchase decision is illustrated. Table of Contents Chapter 1: Introduction. 5 Background of study. 5 Problem statement 6 Purpose of study. 7 Research aims and objectives. 8 Research questions. 8 Significance of study. 8 Conclusions. 9 Chapter 2: Literature review.. 10 2.1 Introduction. 10 2.2 Independent Variable and Dependent Variable. 10 2.3 Conceptual framework. 12 2.4 Hypothesis generation. 12 2.4 Theoretical framework. 14 2.4.1 Theory of reasoned action. 14 2.4.2 Engel Blackwell kollat model: 14 2.4.3 Chaffey’s Theory of Social Media Marketing. 15 2.5 THEMES or ISSUES. 16 2.5.1 Social media marketing. 16 2.5.2 Effectiveness of SMM… 16 2.5.3 Families targeting by the resorts. 17 2.5.4 Challenges of SMM… 17 2.5.5 Impact of social media marketing on purchase behaviour 17 2.5.6 Importance of SMM in targeting consumers. 18 2.6 Gap of the Literature. 18 2.7 Summary. 19 Chapter 1: Introduction Background of study Marketing is an integral part of every business that helps to promote the business and sales products as well as services to the customers. Various business sectors use several methods of marketing to gain the interest of consumers. Social media marketing (SM) refers to using different social media platforms in business to capture customer response, promote the business as well as services in a competitive market (Tuten, 2020). Different marketing tools TV ads, offline advertisements, and newspapers are used by several business sectors but the SM platforms play a significant role to target customers easily. The demand for SM platforms has increased gradually and most people are using SM platforms, therefore, it provides good advantages to target customers easily through SM marketing strategies. Different social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, WhatsApp, YouTube are available that helps to do marketing effectively (Shareefet al. 2019). These are the platforms that help the management of business organizations to interact with the customers, target the customers in an affordable way to get a good customer response. Figure 1.1: Different social media platforms (Source: Created by learner) SM platforms play a significant role to target customers towards the business. It is a good interactive platform through which management is able to easily reach their customers. SM marketing plays a significant role in the hotel industry to target customers effectively. There are many resorts in Klang Valley that also use different SM platforms to target families in the resort. From the statistics, it is shown that 4.48 billion users are engaged with different SM platforms, which is 57% of the global population (datareportal.com, 2021). It indicates the popularity of SM globally therefore resorts in Klang Valley can easily get benefits to target families in their resorts by using SM marketing effectively (Chen and Lin, 2019). A huge number of the population of Malaysia uses several platforms of SM therefore resorts in Klang Valley are easily able to capture the interest of customers by targeting them in their resorts that help to develop their business. Approximately 86% of the population of Malaysia is using SM effectively, which has increased by 26% in comparison to 2016 (statista.com, 2021). Therefore, it helps resorts of Klang Valley to target consumers of Malaysia in their resorts to increase their profitability. SM platforms give good opportunities in business to target customers and interact with them effectively to capture a good response from the customers of the local market as well as the global market (Parvez et al. 2018). The hotel industry is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world therefore through the SM marketing strategies the resorts of Klang valley are easily able to promote their services and are able to give resort-related information to the customers for targeting them. SM platforms play a crucial role in digital marketing by promoting the business in a competitive business environment (Yoong and Lian, 2019). Several resorts in Klang Valley are able to promote their resorts vaccinations for the families to get good business advantages. Therefore, good strategies of SM marketing are required for the resorts of this valley to target customers and promote business in vacations. Problem statement Social media marketing is an important part of digital marketing in business sectors to promote business as well as business related services. It is different from the traditional marketing methods including offline ads, TV ads, or Newspaper ads. Different platforms are available in SM that may be used by the hotel industry to target their customers as well as promote their business for vacations. The major challenge in a business is to target customers and capture their interests that are also faced by the hotel industry effectively (Tuten, 2020). Therefore, SM marketing helps the management of resorts in Klang Valley target families and promotes business for vacations. This is an effective marketing tool that helps to increase the interaction with the customers and understand their interest in the business. There are many challenges including lack of goals in SM marketing, poor understanding of the target audience as well as identifying wrong platforms that may hinder the business (Chen and Lin, 2019). Therefore, resorts in this valley need to select good platforms in social media and need to set goals to target families in their resort for vacation. Facebook mostly used platforms in business for marketing purposes globally. 94% use Facebook platforms for business marketing purposes globally so that resorts of Klang Valley are able to use these platforms to give good advertisements to attract families for vacations (dreamgrow.com, 2021). Good advertisements in social media help to attract customers and increase the brand awareness that is required to get a good business response by interacting with them and solving their queries quickly through these platforms. Management is needed to create good content in the SM platforms because good content of advertisements helps to increase the brand values as well as attract customers in competitive business environments. 71% of internet users in Malaysia have an account on SM platforms. From the statistical report, it is shown that 94% of Malaysian watch brands, products, services are on Facebook, and after watching 62% of them purchase the products as well as services from specific brands (digitalinfluencelab.com, 2021). Therefore, it helps resorts in Klang Valley to create good content on SM platforms to attract families for vacation purposes. Purpose of study Social media is a crucial part of digital marketing strategies in business that helps to interact with potential customers and maintain good relationships between organizations and customers. It creates a direct path for the organizations to communicate with consumers and capture their interest in business (Parvez et al. 2018). The competition in the hotel industry is increasing gradually therefore the different SM platforms play important roles for the resorts to target customers. The effectiveness of SM marketing and several benefits of this marketing to target potential customers is discussed in this study. The main purpose of this study is to analyse the effectiveness of SM marketing for the resorts of Klang Valley to target families in their resorts. Most of the people in Malaysia are using different SM platforms therefore it creates good advantages for the management of resorts to give good advertisements and communicate with customers to target them in their resorts (Chen and Lin, 2019). SM marketing strategies help the management of resorts to get good competitive advantages by targeting families in their resorts in an affordable way. This research gives valuable information and strategies for social media marketing that helps to target families in resorts to develop the business of the hotel industry. Research aims and objectives Aim The aim of the study is to investigate the effectiveness of social media marketing in promoting resort vacations for families within Klang Valley. The importance of social media marketing, methods of social media marketing will also be discussed in this study. Objectives RO1: To identify how Social Media marketing benefits resorts RO2: To find out the social media marketing strategies that increase the conversion rate of potential customers when it comes to resort selection RO3: To analysis social media marketing as a cost-effective method for resorts RO4: To understand the effectiveness of social media marketing to reach families that are planning to go on vacations to Resorts Research questions RQ1: Does Social Media marketing benefit resorts? RQ2: Can Social Media Marketing increase the conversion rate of potential customers when it comes to resort selection? RQ3: Is social media marketing a cost-effective method for resorts? RQ4: Is social media marketing the best way to reach families that are planning to go on vacations to Resorts? Significance of study Social media marketing is an affordable marketing method that helps to interact with the customers directly and capture their response in business. Resorts in Klang Valley are able to use different platforms SM including Facebook, WhatsApp, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube to target families in their resorts to get good business advantages (Yoong and Lian, 2019). The significance of this research is great to understand the effectiveness of SM marketing in the hotel industry to target customers by communicating with them directly. This marketing strategy helps to promote the resorts in Klang Valley and give advertisements to attract customers effectively. Conclusions Different tools are available in social media and the management of resorts in Klang Valley are needed to identify appropriate platforms to target the families. It is an affordable method of marketing through which management of resorts are able to communicate with the consumers and attract them by giving good advertisements. SM platforms are important to give advertisements about the resorts and solve their queries immediately through this platform to maintain good relationships between customers and organizations. Chapter 2: Literature review 2.1 Introduction The following research sheds light on the effectiveness of social media marketing (SMM) for resorts targeting families in Klang valley. Social media is an important tool that helps organisations target a large number of potential consumers in an efficient amount of time. It not only helps to target a large audience but also helps to mitigate various problems that are faced by consumers. The following section of the dissertation sheds light on the review of various research-related literatures. The following chapter also illustrates information related to independent and dependent variables that are associated with the research. Various theories which are based on IV and DV of the following research along with gaps of the literature are illustrated in the following section. 2.2 Independent Variable and Dependent Variable For the following research, there are four independent variables which are as follows: influence of review in social media, content engagement, brand loyalty and cost-effectiveness. The researcher further illustrates a dependent variable which is influence on purchase decisions. Concept of dependent variable: Influence purchase decision: The following is known as a dependent variable. Marketing can be labelled as an important part of business that is carried out by companies in order to inform new or existing customers about product or service information that may benefit them. Various channels are incorporated by companies to carry out the marketing process. Usage of social media can play a crucial role which can affect the purchase decision of consumers (Prasad et al. 2017). Due to the recent pandemic situation around the world, various companies from different sectors are facing adverse situations, the resorts industry is also one of them. Due to the pandemic, various governments across the globe have implemented strong rules to minimise the effect of the pandemic, which not only adversely affect the business process of resorts but is also responsible for changing the habits of consumers. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a change in approach can be observed among consumers which also present various challenges for consumers. Concept of independent variables: Impact of social media review: There are drastic improvements that benefit businesses through the use of social media and today companies are adopting the usage of social media as their first marketing tool. Social media platforms offer various useful tools for companies, which can be considered by companies to understand the effectiveness of their marketing efforts (Prasad et al. 2019). Furthermore, social media becomes more relevant when it comes to reviews, the purchase decision of consumers can be affected by various reviews. Consumers post various reviews after experiencing the service provided by a resort. So, it can be said that social media reviews create a considerable impact on the dependant variable. Content engagement: The effectiveness of social media can be measured by analysing the engagement of content. As opined by (Ansari et al. 2019), content can be illustrated as an important factor that not only helps companies to increase their engagement but also helps to capture the attention of various potential consumers. Analysis of various KPIs can help resorts to get a clear picture of their marketing efforts which not only help them to understand the effectiveness of their contents but also help to get an idea of which contents attract consumer attention best. In simple terms, the more engagement content from a resort receives, the more likely it will be fed to potential customers with similar interests. Brand loyalty: Brand loyalty can be illustrated as another important factor that helps to understand the effectiveness of SMM. As stated by Ebrahim (2020), SMM is generally used by companies in order to streamline communication as well as interactions between brands and customers. The research further illustrates that SMM is a critical factor that not only has an impact on the purchase decisions of consumers but also develops a considerable effect on the loyalty of consumers. Important factors of SMM such as customisation and interactions create a considerable impact on the loyalty of consumers and help to increase revenue generation. Cost-effectiveness: Various improvements that take place in social media drive the adoption of social media for organisations. It can be depicted as an important tool which can be depicted as a cost-effective alternative for companies that not only help them to carry out the marketing process but also helps to mitigate various problems that are faced by consumers while availing the service or using the products offered by the company (Poddar and Agarwal, 2019). 2.3 Conceptual framework Figure 2.1: Conceptual framework (Source: Created by learner) 2.4 Hypothesis generation H1: Social media review has a Positive impact on purchase decision of customers in Klang Valley. The following hypothesis can be illustrated as a Positive hypothesis. The hypothesis is developed in order to test whether any relationship between the measurable phenomenon is evident or not. After testing the following hypothesis research can illustrate whether SMM develops any impact on the targeting process of resorts for families in Klang Valley. H0: Social media review has no significant impact on purchase decision of customers in Klang Valley. The following statement can be illustrated as a null hypothesis developed by the researcher in order to find out the relationship between the targeting process and SM review. It helps the researcher to test various relationships in order to get an idea of how SM review helps to escalate the targeting process. H2: Content engagement in Social media marketing has a positive impact on the purchase decision of families in the Klang Valley. The following statement is another positive hypothesis that helps the researcher to find out positive consequences of SMM on the targeting of families in the Klang Valley. The testing of the following hypothesis helps the researcher to get an idea if there are any positive consequences that have a direct impact on consumers. H0: There is no significant relationship of content engagement in social media marketing on the purchase decision of families in Klang valley. The following statement is also a null hypothesis that sheds light on no significant relationship of content engagement in SMM. It not only helps the researcher to formulate various recommendations that can be considered by the resorts for an effective targeting process. H3: There is a positive relationship between the brand loyalty and the purchase decision of customers in Klang valley. This is a positive hypothesis that plays important roles for the researchers to find out the positive impacts of brand loyalty on the purchasing decision of customers in Klang valley. H0: There is no significant relationship between the brand loyalty and purchase decision of Klan valley. This statement is another null hypothesis that helps researchers to keep focus on that there is a no significant impacts of brand loyalty on the purchasing decision in Klang valley. H4: Cost effectiveness has a positive relationship with the purchase decision of customers in the Klang valley. This is a positive hypothesis that helps researchers to identify the positive relationship of the cost effectiveness with the customer’s decision of purchasing. H0: Cost effectiveness has no significant relationship with the purchase decision of customers in Klang valley. The following statement is a null hypothesis that plays effective roles for researchers to formulating that there is no significant relationship between the purchasing decision and the cost effectiveness. 2.4 Theoretical framework 2.4.1 Theory of reasoned action The following theory is developed by Martin Fishbein and Icek Ajzen in order to make necessary improvements on Information integration theory. Few significant aspects are addressed by the following theory which is behavioural intentions (LaCaille, 2020). The following theory illustrates various important aspects of the behaviour of an individual rather than focusing on the predicting attitude of the individual. Due to various improvements that take place in digital technology, brands are able to target potential consumers as well as gain visibility by employing various digital marketing strategies. The following theory illustrates the relationship between attitude and behaviour of individuals that are closely related to actions performed by consumers. Creative posts are given by resort in order to capture the attention of consumers by employing various social media channels which have an influence on the purchase decisions of customers. As illustrated by Sanne and Wiese (2018), social media marketers need to address the factors which consider customer attitude and various subjective norms. 2.4.2 Engel Blackwell kollat model: The following model illustrates four important steps that help to understand the behaviour of customers. As per the model, four important steps are processing of information, interpretation of information, decision making and influence of the environment. The following model can be helpful as it helps to understand how consumers process information and the impact it creates on consumer decisions (Zhang et al. 2020). The influence of social media on the purchase decision of consumers can be understood by employing the following model. As per the model, the second stage illustrates the interpretation of the information. Figure 2.2: Consumer decision making (Source; Ristova, 2019) The above image illustrates the process of interpretation of collected information of consumers. The next part illustrates the final stages of decision making. Employing various social media channels not only help resorts to dispersing information but also helps to create an impact on their purchase decision. The last and final step of the following model is the influence of the external environment such as income and social class which also can heavily affect the purchase decision. 2.4.3 Chaffey’s Theory of Social Media Marketing As commented by Manzoor et al. (2020), monitoring and facilitating customer interaction, participation and sharing by using various social media platforms not only help the organisation to build positive customer engagement but also helps to increase the revenue generation of companies. The theory further illustrates that positive engagement further leads to developing better commercial values for the organisations. Using various social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram not only help resorts in Klang valley to target potential consumers but also helps them to convert potential customers to permanent consumers. The use of SMM strategies can help resorts to increase their overall visibility which not only increases the rate of bookings but also helps the resort to circulate important information to the tourists (Iacovou, 2021). The following theory further illustrates that interactions with consumers can take place both in customer sites as well as company sites. The adoption of SMM also helps resorts to address various queries as well as problems faced by consumers which can positively contribute to brand loyalty. 2.5 THEMES or ISSUES 2.5.1 Social media marketing Social media marketing can be illustrated as a marketing process where marketers consider social media as well as social networks to give information about their products and services to consumers. SMM provides an environment for organisations, which helps them to engage with their consumers (Jacobson et al. 2020). It also helps organisations to capture the attention of potential consumers in order to increase the overall revenue generation of companies. SMM allows companies to carry out marketing processes based on the culture and mission of the company. It also has various data analytics tools that give analytics on various important KPIs that also help companies to understand the success of their marketing campaign. Due to advancement that takes place in digital technology, the rate of adopting various digital technologies for marketing purposes also has increased. Social media is an important aspect for service-based sectors like the resorts and hospitality sector as it helps marketers to formulate various strategies that can promote their services (Shareef et al. 2019). The advancement of digital technologies allows organisations to adopt various social media platforms in order to carry out the marketing process. Due to the connected nature of social media networks, marketers can get detailed information of the target market which positively helps in the marketing process of organisations. 2.5.2 Effectiveness of SMM Effectiveness of SMM is great in digital marketing because a good advertisement, content creation through various SM platforms helps management of resorts to attract customers and target families in the resorts that generate good profits effectively. The cost effectiveness and customers effectiveness two important factors of marketing therefore good strategies are need to adopt by the management of resorts (Heggde and Shainesh, 2018). Management is needed to provide cost related information through SM platforms by interacting with customers to attract them in their resorts. An affordable cost and good service provides good values for the customers and maintain customer effectiveness. They are able to interact directly with customers and attract them by providing advertisements in their resorts through SMM. 2.5.3 Families targeting by the resorts Management of resorts may target nuclear families, mixed group of tourists as well as large families by providing different types of room accommodation. Good service of resorts and several sizes of rooms attract all type of families to enjoy their holidays that generate good profits for the hotel industry ((Ardiansyah and Sarwoko, 2020)). Mostly management of resorts are target large families and mixed group of tourists to generate good profits and apart from that they also set price of their services as per their accommodation for different families. 2.5.4 Challenges of SMM SMM can have a considerable impact on the companies if the process is not employed properly. The following section of the literature review illustrates various challenges that are faced by marketers while implementing SMM strategies, which are as follows: Development of marketing goals: As per various reports most marketer’s face issues while developing their marketing goals. Various marketers faced challenges while aligning strategies for social media marketing with the goals of the business (Keegan and Rowley, 2017). The improper development of SMM goals can lead to incorrect measurement of various KPIs. Identification of social media platforms: Another challenge that is faced by marketers while employing SMM strategies is the selection of proper platforms. In order to understand the most used social media platforms companies need to carry out a market analysis. Improper information of various markets can lead to unnecessary usage of marketing efforts as well as resources. It can have a negative impact on the ROI of the marketing campaign which also can affect the overall success of the marketing effort done by companies. Understanding needs of consumers: Understanding various pain points of various consumers and their needs can be illustrated as an important factor that not only helps companies to develop products aligned with the needs of consumers but also helps companies to increase consumer’s engagement (Heggde and Shainesh, 2018). Inadequate understanding of consumers’ needs can have a negative effect on marketing efforts. 2.5.5 Impact of social media marketing on purchase behaviour Social media can be illustrated as an important tool for carrying out communication processes with consumers. Companies employ social media tools in order to streamline communication processes that not only help them to give product information but also help them with various pain points of consumers (Ardiansyah and Sarwoko, 2020). Due to the sudden rise of the COVID-19 pandemic, the resorts and hospitality industry experiences considerable setbacks that heavily affect their business process. Using social media, various resorts can give information on various restrictions that resorts have taken in order to ensure the safety of customers. Due to various advancements that take place in various social media platforms, it helps to increase the number of users of these mediums. Social media can be illustrated as an important aspect that also can affect the purchase decision of consumers. As commented by Varkaris and Neuhofer (2017), the resorts related decisions developed by consumers can get affected as social media gives a provision to consumers where they can search and get information of various resorts along with their service review, which has the capability of affecting both positively as well as negatively. Effective usage of social media can help consumers to develop awareness about the services offered by resorts which can affect the purchase decision of consumers. 2.5.6 Importance of SMM in targeting consumers Due to various advancement that takes place in digital technologies, resorts are able to undertake various social media platforms which not only helps them to give information about their services and also helps them to capture the attention of consumers. Social media provides a large untapped consumer base for resorts. It helps resorts target a specific set of consumers by employing various digital marketing strategies such as SMM. Social media provides an opportunity for developing various personalised content that can help resorts to capture the attention of consumers (Venciūtė, 2018). Various social media channels are undertaken by resorts in order to give information about their services which helps to increase the online visibility of the resorts and helps to perform better in SEO ranking. 2.6 Gap of the Literature The following section of the literature review illustrates the gaps in the literature. From the review, it can be stated that like any other research, the following research also has few considerable gaps. From the research, the negative impact of various social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram on the privacy of consumers is not discussed by various researchers. There is no sufficient information about the process of SM marketing in specific hotel industry that helps to adopt this SM marketing strategies. Not enough information about the content creation process of SMM and how to target customers through this marketing strategies are discussed here that create a gap in literature section. The processes through which customers are able to book the services and complete their online payments procedures are not effectively elaborate in this study. The next gap is, there is not much mention of various strategies which are evident in research that can be undertaken by resorts to carry out their marketing process during tough times like the COVID-19 pandemic. 2.7 Summary From the above discussion, it can be summarised that social media is important which not only helps to increase viability but also helps resorts to target potential consumers. The above chapter illustrates a detailed discussion on IV and DV of the following research along with theories based on IV and DV. In the later part, a detailed discussion about the SMM and its challenges along with the usage of SMM in targeting porches of resorts is illustrated.
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