Module code: MANM316

Module Overview

The wide application of digital marketing and social media by destinations marketing organizations (DMOs), the hospitality industry and other tourism related enterprises has boomed research during the last decade. Being aware that consumers become co-marketers, co-designers, and co-producers of travel experiences, understanding basic principles and having knowledge about how to use digital marketing and social media are important for tourism enterprises in order to be able to compete in an increasingly competitive and transparent environment. As such, awareness about how tourism and hospitality firms and DMOs are transforming their business models and operations in order to incorporate digital marketing channels is vital to succeed in the social and economic business environment.   

This module provides students with an understanding of the importance and the application of digital marketing in general and social media in particular. It involves a critical reflection on contemporary strategies, concepts and ideas that currently shape tourism practices from a demand as well as a supply side perspective. In other words, the module deals with the impact of social media on traveller’s behaviour and how firms can exploit social media to enhance networking, collaboration, and traveller’s engagement in marketing. The module also deals with factors that facilitate, or on the contrary, inhibit the usage of various digital marketing channels in the tourism industry. In doing so the module discusses research findings and industry examples from various countries and different types of tourism related organisations.

As digital marketing and social media is not unique to the ‘for-profit’ sector, non-profit organisations as well as policy and governmental actions play a crucial role, making the course relevant to all students regardless of their career aspirations.

Module provider

Hospitality, Tourism & Events Management

Module Leader

TUSSYADIAH Iis (Hosp & Tour)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 117

Lecture Hours: 33

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Impact of social media on consumer behaviour

  • Social Media as travel information source

  • Opportunities, challenges and risks of social media for the tourism supply side

  • Digital marketing opportunities

  • Search engine optimization and search engine marketing

  • Banner marketing

  • Social media marketing

  • Email marketing

  • SMS marketing

  • Mobile marketing

  • Digital marketing success measurement and monitoring

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment

Assignment 1: Social media campaign (max 1500 words) Assignment 2: Individual report (max 2500 words)

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate that they gradually build up their knowledge and understanding of digital marketing and social media activities in a tourism context and it is designed to allow students to evidence their achievement of the learning outcomes. The assessment comprises the development of a “Social media campaign” and a “Scientific article”.

As part of the first assessment component (“Social media campaign”) students need to collect one specific social media campaign example from a certain tourism supplier (e.g., destination, hotel, transport, attraction, and event). The following aspects need to be covered in a word document:

  1. One selected social media marketing campaign should be described, allowing the reader to understand some background of the campaign; which channels the supplier used and how successful each channel was. This description should be supported by an appropriate amount of visuals of the example (i.e., use screenshots, pictures, etc.)

  2. Based on literature it should be presented how the chosen social media marketing campaign example engages its target group/s AND an overview of criteria used to evaluate customer engagement should be provided as a summary of the discussion

  3. The customer engagement of the chosen example should be systematically compared with a list of social media marketing campaigns competitors used. There must be a systematic behind how the list of competitors is chosen

  4. List of references (not included in the word count)

For the second assessment students should write up a scientific article. Concerning structure the article needs to follow common academic notions. The empirical results part of the article comprises the findings of the systematic comparison of the social media marketing campaign and the campaigns of various competitors chosen for the first assignment. Managerial implications need to be provided.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • The search for marketing campaigns comprising several social media channels which will be used to evaluate industry activities with regards to digital marketing/social media. This assessment requires students to  look at literature published as well as to review digital marketing/social media activities of real-life tourism enterprises

  • The scientific article requires students to present the systematic comparison of social media campaigns and to present insights gained in the course of the semester project. The scientific article will not only assess a critical discussion of existing literature and knowledge of the subject area but also creativity and presentation skills

Formative assessment and feedback

Pre-assignment feedback sessions are an integral part of this module. During these sessions, students work in groups on a task which reflects the assessment requirements and receive feedback on their work.

Module aims

  • develop a critical appreciation of the nature, role and importance of digital marketing and social media in hospitality and tourism, drawing on a variety of perspectives
  • critically discuss facilitators of and inhibitors with regards to the usage of various digital marketing channels
  • critically investigate contemporary strategies, concepts and ideas related to digital marketing and social media in tourism
  • critically evaluate the impact of social media on traveller's behaviour
  • understand the influence of digital marketing and social media on business strategies and operations
  • After attending this module students will be able to discuss the impact of digital marketing and social media on both the supply and the demand side of hospitality and tourism. Students will also be able to critically appraise the role of social media in creating value propositions for customers and competitive advantage for organizations in the tourism industry. The module provides insights with regards to understanding the benefits and risks of various digital marketing channels and social media for stakeholders in the tourism sector. The examination and analysis of digital marketing and social media from different standpoints and from the perspective of various stakeholders will shape students' understanding of the factors crucial to deal with changes of the business environment in tourism. Finally, by discussing knowledge in appropriate forums, students will enhance their presentation, communication and argumentation skills.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Discuss the underlying principles and perspectives of digital marketing and social media in tourism KC
2 Demonstrate a critical understanding of the impacts of digital marketing and social media in creating value propositions for customers and competitive advantage for organizations KC
3 Critically evaluate benefits and risks of various digital marketing channels KCP
4 Critically examine and understand challenges and opportunities the tourism industry faces due to social media KCP
5 Develop practical skills in the analysis of social media marketing campaigns and formally presenting findings PT
6 Develop creative thinking and competencies PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

  • increase students’ critical understanding of the nature and dynamics of digital marketing and social media in tourism

  • enhance students’ ability to assess the impact of digital marketing and social media on traveller’s and tourism related enterprises

  • increase students’ ability to critically reflect on the implications of digital marketing channels and social media 

  • understand the shift from push towards pull marketing

  • learn how to evaluate and monitor digital- and social media marketing activities

  • enhance the competence of students in communicating and discussing ideas

  • increase students’ ability to work independently and in groups  

The teaching and learning methods include:

  • theoretical lectures with supporting materials from a range of perspectives within digital marketing and social media in tourism to provide students with a holistic framework of knowledge

  • in-class exercises, practical examples and topical case studies to critically discuss and apply theoretical knowledge to the real world

  • a semester project in which students first search for social media marketing campaigns which can be used to evaluate customer engagement strategies of various stakeholders

  • a report to provide students with the opportunity to present findings from the semester project and to discuss these in appropriate forums

  • supporting guest lecture session

  • formative feedback sessions

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: MANM316

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2020/1 academic year.