The role of print media in travel decision-making
Kotzé, Frederik Christiaan
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The primary goal of this study was to determine if print media (newspapers and magazines) play a role in tourist decision to visit a destination. Four objectives were derived from the primary research goal. The first objective was to analyse newspapers and magazines by means of a literature study. This was achieved by looking at the strategic component of media planning in a media strategy in the delivering of the advertising message. The problems facing media strategies as well as the marketing mix for print media were briefly discussed. It was also found that there are certain advantages as well as disadvantages in using newspapers and magazines as advertising medium. The second objective was to look at the process of travel decision-making. This was done by looking at two models of travel decision-making. The process was discussed and it is indicated where print media plays a role in each of the phases of the process. It was found that pint media does play a role in each of the phases of the travel decision-making process. This information is of great value for marketers of travel destinations to be incorporated in their marketing plans. The third objective was to reflect the result of the empirical research and to determine the key success factors in print media that influenced tourist decision to travel. It was achieved by collecting data in which structured questionnaires were completed by international tourists in order to determine the role print media played in their decision to visit South Africa. The questionnaires were distributed amongst 145 international tourists from all over the world at Sun City in the Northwest Province of South Africa. Editorials in newspapers and magazines seem to be more popular with the respondents than advertising but that could be mainly because editorials are seen more credible than advertising. The fourth objective was to make recommendations for effective use of print media to attract tourist to visit a destination. Newspapers and magazines should play an important role in the motivation phase of the decision-making process because it has a direct bearing on the tourist decision to act. Newspapers and magazines are considered one of the principal means to influence tourist's decision-making. Because newspapers and magazines are usually not expensive, their high information content can motivate a tourist to visit a destination. Magazines and newspapers can play an important role when searched for additional information. The latter is high in information content and are mostly credible.