Purpose – The paper aims to provide an overview of how UK conference centres have incorporated Web 2.0 applications, such as Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter, into their marketing communications strategies. Design/methodology/approach – Following an analysis of the impacts of Web 2.0 applications on purchase decision‐making processes in general, the market environment within which conference centres promote themselves was examined. The results of a questionnaire‐based survey of UK conference centres' marketing communications strategies were then analysed. Findings – The paper's findings suggest that while some UK conference centres have comprehensively adopted Web 2.0 applications into their marketing communications programmes, others have yet to harness the potential of these new promotional tools. A few serious barriers to wider adoption remain. Research limitations/implications – The extent to which the results may be generalised beyond the geographical parameters of this study may be limited, therefore further research is required, to test the findings across a broader range of locations. In addition, the insights provided by this study need to be complemented by research into the use of Web 2.0 applications by those who are responsible for selecting venues. Practical implications – The paper considers the consequences of venues using Web 2.0 applications in their marketing communications strategies. These include potential loss of control of the venues' marketing messages, resource issues and the need to evaluate the effectiveness of these tools. Originality/value – This study therefore takes a first step towards achieving an understanding of how venues are using the opportunities and dealing with the challenges created by the availability of Web 2.0 applications as potential and actual elements in their marketing communications programmes.
International Journal of Event and Festival Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jun 7, 2011
Keywords: Marketing; Social networks; Communication technologies; Conferences
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