#tourism: the influence of social media on satisfaction with visitor experiences in Churchill, Manitoba

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Fowler, Katherine Ann
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The influence of social media on visitor satisfaction is an area limited in investigation and has important implications for tourism management professionals/organizations. Using del Bosque and San Martín’s cognitive-affective model of tourist satisfaction, this study investigated how viewing trip-related social media during the pre-trip phase of travel influenced satisfaction. Churchill, a renowned tourism destination, was the site used for exploration. Sixteen participants were recruited post-visit in August 2016 at the Churchill Airport and train station. The study followed a qualitative approach using semi-structured interviews ranging 20-30 minutes. The findings indicate that viewing social media can influence satisfaction, however only when travelers view components of a destination that are important to them in achieving satisfaction. This suggests that Martilla and James’ importance performance analysis (IPA) model may better explain satisfaction than del Bosque and San Martín’s model. Future studies verifying that the IPA model is the best fit would be beneficial.
Tourism, Social media, Visitor satisfaction, Web 2.0, User generated content, Electronic word of mouth, Destination image, Travel process