Q Assignment highlights on the research objectives, questions and analyses the rationale of the study. Home, - IMPACT OF DIGITAL MARKETING ON PROMOTION OF HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY Introduction Digital marketing, e-marketing, online marketing or web-marketing are all synonymous and often used interchangeably. In the hospitality sector, it is growing rapidly and at a dramatic pace. It has far-stretching impact on the conducting business in this sector especially in terms of revenue generation and profitability. Technology has also facilitated the promotional activities of the hoteliers and has also brought about a number of benefits to the customers as well. In this present study, the researcher has attempted to analyse the “Impact of Digital Marketing on Promotion of Hospitality Industry”. For the attainment of this research purpose Hilton Hotel has been chosen as a case study. The given chapter discusses the backdrop of the study drawing out the rationale behind choosing the topic. Thereby, the researcher has stated out the problem, research aim, objectives and questions. At the end, the dissertation structure is laid down with a brief summary of the entire chapter. Background of the study Bansal et al. (2014, pp-23) stated that the hospitality sector demands adoption of an innovative approach and development of an advanced marketing strategy. The industry deals with both tangible aspects like food and beverages as well as intangible services like hospitality and tourism. Therefore, proper integration of web-based promotional methods can ensure quick delivery of result and also be cost-effective. Gilbert and Powell-Perry (2014, pp-16) stated that in the present year the hoteliers are primarily focusing on a responsive and innovative web-design with the facility of online booking system fort the customers. The hotel review sites like Trip Advisor, MyTrip have received prominence owing to the digital presence of the hotels and restaurants. On the other hand, the social media sites like Facebook, Twitter help the hotels to interact with the customers and ask for their opinions and suggestions. Mandelbaum (2015, pp-49) stated that it improves the process of customer relationship management of the hotel. However, the author also noted that the effectiveness of digital marketing depends on the extent to which it can generate negative comments and criticism from the customers. It can help the hotels in the betterment of hospitality standards and services. Sheldon (2014, pp-234) noted that Mobile hotel marketing has been the recent trend. Through this strategy, the hoteliers promote their brand and establish long-standing connection with the customers. The study also revealed that in the year 2014, the desktop site visitors have declined to 16%, while the use of mobile devices for hotel room bookings has increased nearly 51%. Online travel bookings in the previous year reached to 148.3 million and 65% of the hotel reservations on same day were made through smart phones. On the other hand, Mariani et al. (2014, pp-270) stated that web marketing is vital for hospitality industry since through this means the hotels receive a substantial proportion of its bookings every year. It can maintain the budget of the hotel for marketing purposes and adequately target the online customers. Background of the company Among the international chains service hotels, Hilton Hotels and Resort is the distinguished one. Under the flagship of Hilton Worldwide, there are nearly 530 hotels in the brand name of Hilton across six continents in 2010. The name of the founder of this renowned hotel and resort chain is Conrad Hilton. The market share of the hotel chain in the present year is 51.8, which was slightly high in the previous year. Thus, the market share of the company has witnessed a decline. Sherwyn (2009, pp-200) noted that in the UK branches of Hilton Hotel, a pro-active approach has been adopted to effective energy use. Thus, they have installed the measure of green control to their doors, windows and hotel rooms to use energy efficiently. This has earned the organisation customer reputation and strong brand image. Rationale of the study What is the issue: The issue of the present study is the impact of digital marketing on promotion of hospitality industry. Gilbert and Powell-Perry (2014, pp-19) noted that the hotel industry can increase its profitability if it focuses on the digital marketing strategy and adopt advanced technologies in promotional activities. It can lead to complete transformation of the hotel industry in terms of online booking, improved service delivery, better management of customer relationship management and enhanced brand image. As noted in the background of the company, the Hilton Hotel and Resort chain is experiencing a decline in the market share. Thus the researcher has taken the company as a case study for this present research. Why is it an issue: The digital marketing as noted by Mandelbaum (2015, pp-45) has become the buzzword for the global market players. The traditional marketing channels have declined in its importance making way for more effective marketing practices and strategies. It also has a considerable impact in the hospitality sector. The digital presences of the hoteliers have also necessitated a shift from conventional promotional practices. Therefore, the impact of digital marketing has become an issue. Why is it an issue now: Hotel and tourism is a growing industry in the UK market contributing to 3.6% to the GDP of the country. Thus it is important to maintain its profitability and growth. Moreover, Bansal et al. (2014, pp-22) stated observed that the recent period has observed growth of hotel review sites like Trip Advisor, MyTrip and sharing of opinions suggestions through social media like Facebook and Twitter. In addition, the mobile bookings have also showed a notable increase owing to the rise in the use of smart phones. Mariani et al. (2014, pp-270) reviewed the report presented by Google and stated that the travellers on an average spend 55 minutes for booking a hotel. They visit 17 websites and 90% of these customers use more than one device. Thus, the issue has assumed relevance in the present context. What could the research shed light on: The present research would focus on the significant benefits digital marketing can bring to hospitality industries. The researcher also evaluates the impact of digital marketing on the competition level within the hospitality industry. The study also offers certain useful recommendations to improve digital marketing strategy for improving promotion of hospitality industry. Problem statement The problem statement of this particular study is the promotion of hospitality industry and the role played by digital marketing in this regard. The researcher has attempted to analyse the reasons for the shift towards online marketing and the competitive scenario in the hospitality industry. Research Aim The aim of the research is to analyse the impact of digital marketing promotion in hospitality industry in UK. In order to attain the research purpose, the researcher has chosen Hilton Hotel, as a case study. Research Objectives • To examine the factors contributing to the increasing importance of digital marketing in promotion of hospitality industry • To assess the impacts of digital marketing on the competition level within the hospitality industry • To analyse the reasons for adoption of digital marketing in hospitality industry • To recommend strategies for improving digital marketing strategies to enhance promotion of the hospitality industry Research questions • What are the factors contributing to the increasing importance of digital marketing in promotion of hospitality industry? • What is the impact of digital marketing on the competition level within the hospitality industry? • What are the reasons for adoption of digital marketing in hospitality industry? • What recommendations can be made for improving digital marketing strategies to enhance promotion of the hospitality industry? Conclusion and Recommendations: On the basis of the findings of the researcher attempts to provide certain useful recommendations pertinent to the research objective. It also specifies the limitations and future scope of the study. Summary The chapter highlights on the research objectives, questions and analyses the rationale of the study. It provides a brief introduction to the subject matter and sheds light on the background of the study. The researcher also has put forward the entire structure of the dissertation and briefly stated the things that will be covered under those chapters.