Adapting to an emerging social media landscape: The rise of informalization of company communication in tourism

Corné Dijkmans, P Kerkhof, C.J. Beukeboom

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Abstract

This study investigates the evolvement of informalization of company communication on social media over time, based on actual social media data from the tourism industry. The development in the use of emoticons and emoji by companies is examined, as an expression of informalization and humanization of online company communication. We selected 33 companies from the tourism industry in The Netherlands and investigated their Facebook and Twitter messages supplemented with the messages of consumers who interacted with these companies, for the period 2011-2016. Results show that the use of emoticons and emoji in online company communication increased significantly over the period covered in this study, demonstrating a higher level of informalization of company communication. Since this is a key factor for improving relational outcomes, this finding has scholarly as well as managerial relevance. We discuss the implications of the results for the presence of organizations on social media
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInformation and Communication Technologies in Tourism 2020
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the International Conference in Surrey, United Kingdom, January 08–10, 2020
EditorsJ Neidhardt, W Wörndl
PublisherSpringer
Chapter3-14
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9783030367374
ISBN (Print)9783030367367
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • social media
  • conversational human voice
  • informalization of communication
  • textual paralanguage
  • emoticons
  • emoji

Cite this

Dijkmans, C., Kerkhof, P., & Beukeboom, C. J. (2020). Adapting to an emerging social media landscape: The rise of informalization of company communication in tourism. In J. Neidhardt, & W. Wörndl (Eds.), Information and Communication Technologies in Tourism 2020: Proceedings of the International Conference in Surrey, United Kingdom, January 08–10, 2020 Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-36737-4_1