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The UK’s biggest travel brands are failing to engage with mobile users

Press Release   •   Apr 16, 2014 13:49 BST

The UK’s biggest travel companies are failing to engage with the media, consumers and stakeholders on mobile devices by not optimising their online newsrooms for mobile, with only one of the ten assessed brands offering a responsively designed newsroom.

Despite the number of mobile devices now far outstripping the number of PCs and 2014 predicted to be the year when mobile search overtakes desktop queries, Mynewsdesk’s What's the story? 2014 newsroom report has found that only one travel brand has optimised their newsroom for mobile browsing. This suggests the UK’s travel industry is missing a huge opportunity given that three out of four mobile searches lead to a follow-up action, including online purchase.

Although the report has found that travel companies are investing in social media and online content, with only one brand failing to link their active social media channels to their newsroom and 80% of brands keeping their content up to date, they are neglecting the media and online influencers. Just 30% of the brands assessed in the report included a photo library in their newsroom, with a disappointing 20% providing imagery of sufficient quality for media use.

As Paul Sutton, Head of Social Communications at Bottle PR said, “The days of PR being a one-way process, where consultants sent out news releases as a means of gaining press coverage, are long gone. Journalists and bloggers now work in the moment, using social media channels and the web to find the information and assets they require at a moment’s notice. If that information isn’t available for your brand, the chances are very high that they’ll simply move onto one of your competitors. So it’s shocking to read that so many newsrooms are out of date, inaccessible or contain poor quality information. Running a Facebook page or a Twitter account in isolation simply isn’t enough and brands must wake up to that face. Fast.”

Furthermore, Peter Ingman, CEO of Mynewsdesk has said, “With the increasing popularity of sites like TripAdvisor amongst consumers a travel company is only as good as its last review so it’s essential for them to be poised to respond to customers and the media should a crisis arise at anytime. For this, travel companies should ensure they are able to update their website, newsroom and social media channels in real-time. However, if their newsrooms are not responsively designed they risk not being able to engage with the media, consumers and key stakeholders when it matters most by not being optimised for mobile.”

Mynewsdesk’s What’s the story? The 2014 newsroom report is available for download here. It includes the complete findings of the study, as well as offering best practice guidelines, top tips for a successful online newsroom, practical information, expert opinions and real-world examples.


Ends

Notes to editors

The full study, What’s the Story? The 2014 newsroom report, evaluated the top 10 brands from five different UK sectors and benchmarked them across 60 different criteria, taking in to account content, social media integration, newsroom structure, features, multimedia, blogging and mobile functionality.


Methodology

Based on a decade of experience developing newsrooms for companies across the world, the Mynewsdesk team devised a set of best practice criteria, in conjunction with professionals from across the communications industry. We evaluated the top 10 UK companies from five different sectors against our criteria, and assigned each a score. With 56 points available, we were then able to create a benchmark based on how well they performed.

We used the list of the best and worst holiday companies in Which? to find the top UK travel companies.

The companies assessed were: Lurpak, John Lewis, Princess Cruises, University College London, Leeds, Warburtons, Imperial College London, Cornwall UA, Cunard, Audley Travel, Birmingham, Oxford, London School of Economics, Sheffield, The Body Shop, Exodus, Walkers Crisps, County Durham UA, City of Edinburgh, Bristol, Durham, Dunelm Mill, Inntravel, Evans Cycles, HF Holidays, Fred Olsen Cruise, Bonmarché, Manchester, Cambridge, Trailfinders, Glasgow City, Nestle Nescafé, Hovis, Lucozade, Andrex, Bradford, King's College, Manchester, Waterstones, Edinburgh, Kingsmill, Wiltshire UA, Lush, Richer Sounds, Lakeland, Early Learning Centre, Cadbury, Whiskas, Archers Holidays, Riviera Travel


Media contact:

Darren Willsher / Andrew Hill

EML Wildfire Tech PR

+44 20 8408 8000

mynewsdesk@emlwildfire.com

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