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Analysis of Use of Facebook Pages as a Social Media Tools by Halal Concept Hotel Enterprises Operating in the Mediterranean Region of Turkey.

1. Introduction

The tourism sector has the ultimate importance among growing sectors of the Islamic economy. In the tourism sector, Muslims represent the fastest growing segment of the tourism market (Global Muslim Travel Index, 2016). According to the Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI), it is estimated that by January 2016, the participation rate of Muslims in the tourism movement increased compared to the previous year and 117 million Muslims travelled in 2015; and this figure will reach 168 million by 2020. Among the member countries of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the most preferred halal destinations are Malaysia by 81.9%, followed by the United Arab Emirates by 74.7% and Turkey by 73.9%, while in the list of halal destinations with the highest preference in the countries not being a member of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Singapore is ranked as the first by 68.4%, Thailand is the second by 59.5% and England is the third by 59.0% (Global Muslim Travel Index, 2016).

The worldwide Muslim population of 1.7 billion is increasing rapidly, especially in the middle-scaled Muslim countries such as the Gulf States, Indonesia, Malaysia, Turkey, Nigeria and Bangladesh. It is projected that the Muslim population will make up 2.2 billion by 2030, equivalent to 26% of the world population, which means that one of the three people who were born between 1990 and 2030 will be Muslim (Global Muslim Travel Index, 2016). The fact that the Muslim population increase is so high has allowed participation rates in the tourism movement and the level of disposable income to rise. According to the report of Global Effects of Halal Tourism 2015-2016, prepared by Salam Standards, the level of travel expenditure of Muslim tourists is higher than that of other tourists. In recent years, the increase in the level of education of Muslims, especially in Western Europe and North America, has increased the level of disposable income by having a good position in professional business life. Thus, Muslims constituted 11% of global travel expenditures, amounting $ 145 billion in 2015, which is expected to reach $ 1.5 trillion by 2025 (Salam Standard, 2016).

The Muslim travel market developed rapidly and displayed dynamic characteristics, and this prompted the emergence of halal-concept hotel enterprises that serve in compliance with Islamic religion (Haberturk, 2017). Halal concept hotel enterprises that choose Muslims as their target market use Facebook network, as an effective communication and marketing tool in order to gain competitive advantage, have an important position in the market and respond quickly to customer requests and needs. Halal-concept hotel enterprises can instantly respond the demands of the customers through online booking and online browsing tabs and directly reach the target group through videos, photo, events, promotions, campaigns, special days and weeks (Kocaman, 2017). The hotels with this concept share written, visual and audio information about their services; in which they state that they do not use any pork, all products have halal certificates, no alcohol is served at the hotel, facilities for religious services, pools, spas and gyms are available separately for men and women. Thus, halal hotel operators can use the Facebook network efficiently to respond the questions that may asked by the customers and help them relieve.

In this study, frequency of use of Facebook pages by halal concept hotel enterprises operating in the Mediterranean region of Turkey analyzed. Facebook pages of halal concept hotel hotels were evaluated with qualitative research methods through content analysis based on 26 criteria. It has been observed that Facebook users have effectively used the pages of halal-concept hotels, but the hotels have failed to perform important works such as editing and updating these pages.

2. Literature Review

2.1 Hotel with Halal Concept and Properties

Prior to describing halal hotel concept, the word "halal" is to be analyzed; "halal" is an Arabic word meaning that it is allowed as stipulated by Islam (Khalek, 2014: 27). According to another definition; "halal" means permitted by religion and its infinitive form in the dictionary is read as "allowed, authorized, permitted and lawful" (Islam Ansiklopedisi, 2017). According to the Turkish Language Institution (TDK, 2017), "halal" is defined as "anti-haram" which is not contrary to the rules of religion and not prohibited by religion. The term of halal is not only used to express the appropriateness of food and drink under Islamic principles; but also, it is an important concept having influence on all living areas of Muslims (Bogan, et al., 2016: 3). Halal concept hotels are generally described as the hotel establishments that provide appropriate services in accordance with the rules of conduct in Muslims' life (Saad, et al., 2014). We can say that halal concept hotels are the enterprises operated with halal understanding based on the definition of "halal".

When the international and national literature is reviewed, the concept of the halal hotel is discussed in the international literature as "Shariah Compliant Hotel", "Muslim friendly Hotels" and "Islamic Hotel". In the national literature, it is referred to as "Halal Hotel" "Muhafazakar Hotel", "Tesettur Otel" and "Islamic Hotel". These partially respond to the business understandings of the hotels operating with the concept of halal tourism, but they reflect the most comprehensive definition of the ''halal concept hotel management". Rosenberg and Choufany (2009) state that the concept of the halal hotel is not actually a new practice but has been designed and administered according to Islamic rules for many years by tourists practicing pilgrimage and prayers in the holy cities of Muslims such as Mecca and Medina (Ahmat, et al., 2012).

Although it is described under many different names, there is only one meaning of the halal-concept hotel; "halal belief is considered at such hotels". Therefore, the expectations of Muslim customers who prefer these hotels are fully responded; however, this does not mean that other customers are rejected. Another comparison reveals that these hotels are different from the others. Halal hotels are generally similar to standard hotels, but they differ in terms of the operational features of the hotels in accordance with Islamic halal concept (Razalli, et al. 2012).

As the concept of halal hotel has become widespread, although there is no official criterion for halal- hotel operations, some basic features that halal hotels are identified by some Muslim researchers as follows; non-halal food and alcoholic beverages are prohibited; and holding meetings, events and parties not compliance with Islam are prohibited, gambling is not allowed and alcoholic drinks are not sold at the hotel lobby or restaurants, the hotel does not have any non-halal foods and beverages in the fridges; there is a Quran, prayer rugs, prayer beads and arrows showing the qibla and the beds and toilets are arranged according to the qibla in the rooms and there are prayer rooms in the hotel, the hotel staff is dressed according to the Islamic rules, the saloon, rest areas and swimming pool are provided for men and women separately; there are warning signs for tourists to abide by Islamic outfit rules, there are no figurines and symbols of human and animals in hotel decoration and Islamic decoration is preferred in terms of architecture (Samori and Rahman, 2013; Samori and Sabtu, 2014; Stephenson, 2010; 981), Islamic rules and principles are applied even in the design and financial system of the hotel (Saad, et al., 2014), swimming pools and beaches allocated separately for men and women who are not allowed to wear swim suits not appropriate by Islam; non-married couples are not allowed to stay in the same room, mostly Muslims staff are preferred and hotels pay zakat at a certain rate based on annual operating profit (Ahmat, et al., 2012; Rosenberg and Choufany, 2009; Stephenson, et al., 2010;).

Halal concept hotels are classified in three different ways according to the principles and rules of Islam: while a hotel serving halal food service is referred to as a "dry" hotel, the one that provides halal food as well as mosques for men and women are offered separately is referred to as the "partial halal hotel" and the ones with facility design and financial structure compatible with the Islamic rules are referred to as "Fully Islamic Hotel" (Henderson, 2010; Jamal, 2012; Saad,, 2014).

Ahmat, et al. (2015) applied a questionnaire to 300 people at shopping malls, amusement parks and hotels in order to determine the awareness of tourists about halal concept hotel. According to the findings of the study, it is determined that participants do not understand the concept of halal hotel clearly as there is no standard regarding halal hotel; yet the participants are aware of existence of halal concept hotel and think that this concept will benefit them by making them feel valuable. One of the most important details found as a result is that the participants do not favour the idea that "the staff working in halal-minded hotels are mostly Muslims" and that equal rights should be given to other people regardless of religion.

In recent years, there has been rapid increase in the facilities aiming to meet the demands of tourists who prefer halal-concept hotels. Despite this rapid increase, it is known that there are not enough hotels to meet the demand, there is enough room for halal concept hotels (Pamukcu and Arpaci: 2015: 324-329).

2.2 Halal Hotels in the World and Turkey

Muslim tourists are one of the fastest growing segments of global travel industry. According to a survey carried out by Dinar Standard (2012), Muslim tourists are seen as the largest undiscovered niche market of the tourism industry. In order to obtain a competitive advantage in the halal tourism market, the factors that the customers looking for should be determined and put into practice (Halim et al., 2015). For example, while choosing hotels, Muslims have highlighted the safety element (Global Muslim Travel Index, 2016) and the closeness of the location to a mosque (Samori and Rahman, 2013). Also, the researchers paid attention to many issues such as hygiene, regularly organized seminars and sessions. At this point, it is likely that the preference of halal-concept enterprises that meet customer demands and needs through appropriate practices of Islam and even reveal the hidden requests of the customers.

At the Aerostar Hotel, located in Moscow, guest amenities offered in rooms such as shampoo and soap also have a halal certificate. In the Philippines, Fairmont Makati and Raffles Makati Hotel have television channels broadcasting in Arabic as well as Masjid and Quran service (Battour and Ismail, 2015; TTG Asia, 2014;). Alanda Hotel, Marbella Spain, which allows Muslims to stay there without being interrupted during their religious rituals, has Quran in each room and offers fast breaking meals and suhoor meals in Ramadan thanks to its halal certified cuisine. In addition, "King Abdulaziz Mosque" is located just next to the hotel (Muslimbreak, 2016), from which people wishing to perform religious worship can benefit. All financial processes of the Al Jowhara Dubai Hotel hotel are provided through Islamic banks (Ahmat et al., 2012).

As for our country, Marmaris Angel's Peninsula Hotel awarded with the best luxurious non-alcoholic hotel of the World and the best family hotel of the Europe, there is a separate beach for men and women. Sakli Deniz A La Carte Restaurant serves only for women and there are also prayer rooms and Qurans (Angel' Marmaris). At Antalya Sah Inn Paradise Hotel, the guests are provided five-times daily prayer service under the supervision of a religious commissioner appointed by the Directorate of Religious Affairs and has five times daily prayers. On the official web site of the hotel, a separate menu for men and women is provided (Sah Inn Paradise Hotel). At the Ottoman Family Hotel Side, a cafe service is provided under the name of Ladies Coffee shop in addition to spa sections families and family pools (Muhafazakarotelim, 2016).

2.3 Use of Social Media at Halal Concept Hotel Facilities

Social media, which includes blogs, company discussion boards, chat rooms, e-mails among the consumers, customer product and service evaluation websites, internet discussion boards and forums consists of online network based on bidirectional interaction (Mangold and Faulds, 2009: 358; Turker et al., 2014). Today, social media has become one of the fastest growing communications in the internet world (Cinnioglu and Boz, 2015) and marketing tools. According to the "Internet and Social Media User Statistics, January 2016" report prepared by We Are Social, 3,419 billion people out of global population of 7.395 billion, use internet (We Are Social Digital Reports, 2016). Countries, such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates with the majority of Muslims, 64% and 96% respectively, are among those with a high level of Internet and smartphone use. With the increase of Internet access and the spread of smartphones, travel planning has become easier (Global Muslim Travel Index, 2016). People are now able to obtain information through mobile applications developed regarding accommodation, transport, food and beverage, shopping and entertainment services before they start their journey. In this regard, Thailand Tourism Authority has developed a mobile application called "Thailand Muslim Friendly" in English and Thai languages with the cooperation of Google, Android and Apple and it provides information about halal hotels, halal restaurants and other halal tourism services in the destination (Battour and Ismail, 2015). As one of the most popular applications of the Internet, social media is rapidly becoming an important means of communication and the use of social media is increasing in parallel with the increasing rate of internet use (Sahbaz and Bayram, 2013). According to the data of We Are Social Digital Reports, 2016, there are 2.307 billion active social media users in the world. The level of internet usage in our country is increasing rapidly as well. As can be seen in Table 1; while 46.3 million out of the 79.14 million people in Turkey use the internet 42 million actively use the social media. By January 2015, the number of internet users increased by 10% and the number of active social media users increased by 5%. 77% of internet users in Turkey go online every day and 16% connect to internet at least once a week. In Turkey, people use social media for 2 hours and 32 minutes per day (We Are Social Digital Reports, 2016).

The widespread use of social media by individuals has also brought about the involvement of companies in marketing and campaigning. The importance of social media as an area where businesses can communicate more easily with existing or targeted customers and socialize their brands is increasing (Civelek and Dalgin, 2013). The social media that causes a major change in the communication habits of hotel companies as a branch of the tourism sector, is being used for more active communication, making complaints, introducing themselves and promoting events and similar activities (Eryilmaz and Yengin, 2014).

One of the most widely used social media tools is Facebook, founded by Mark Zuckerberg in 2004 (Civelek and Dalgin, 2013). Facebook is a marketing environment in which people can communicate each other, exchange information about their products, brands and themselves, thereby, they can increase the number of members and create a community (Sahbaz and Bas, 2013). According to the January 2016 report of We Are Social, Facebook has 1,590 billion users, which makes it the most used social media platform. Table 2 lists the most popular social media platforms in Turkey. In the order of precedence, Facebook is ranked as first by 32%, Whatsapp by 24%, Facebook Messenger by 20%, Twitter by 17%, and Google+, Instagram, Skype, Linkedin, Viber and Vine respectively. In table 3, it is seen that while Facebook social network is used by the young between 20 and 29 years of age in Turkey by 36%, it is also used the elderly population over 60 years old by 3%. (We Are Social Digital Reports, 2016).

This intense user demand on Facebook has led hotel businesses to appear in these environments. Like other businesses, hotel establishments try to adapt to changing marketing strategies by creating Facebook pages (Sahbaz and Bayram, 2013). Hotel establishments use Facebook social network to announce special offers for Facebook fans, use it as a competitive tool, advertise hotel features, conduct survey applications, announce events, offer reservations and give the latest news about the hotel (Assenov and Khurana, 2012: 328; Eryilmaz and Yengin, 2014). For example, Ikbal Thermal Hotel & Spa Afyon, operating as a halal hotel, shared its discount information to be made if the customers send the date they want to stay over Facebook in order to encourage booking on Facebook page.

Mavi Deniz Hotel is Marmaris in another hotel which provides halal concept. In order to increase the number of followers on Facebook, the hotel offers two couple who like and share the image in Figure 2; a 3-night, 4-day accommodation for free.

Retaj Thermal Hotel & Spa in Yalova has created a cinema event during the sacrifice festival on Facebook page for the customers by noting that "all our guest are invited to the animation film show for children between 15.00-17.00 and movie show for families between 17.00 - 19.00 every day".

2.4 Studies in Literature Concerning Use of Facebook at Accommodation Facilities

When a comprehensive literature survey is conducted, it is observed that important academic studies have been conducted on facebook pages of enterprises. It is seen that Facebook pages are investigated in the literature about their content, visuality, information, usage levels, usage purposes and frequency of usage. Some of these studies are given in Table 4.

3. Methodolgy

Hotel establishments with halal concept, located in the Mediterranean region of Turkey were taken as the population of the study. In order to find the establishments that fall within this category, the data of, and were used. Then, it was found that by 2016, there are 37 halal concept hotels operating within the boundaries of the Mediterranean region of Turkey, certified by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. In the survey, it was revealed that Antalya province has 28 halal concept hotels (82.4%). While there were 3 halal hotels (8.8%) in Mersin province, 2 halal hotels (5.9%) in Adana province and 1 halal hotel (2.9%) in Hatay province, there were no halal hotels in Burdur, Isparta, Osmaniye and Kahramanmaras provinces. As a result of studies, it was determined that 52,9% of the hotels included in the study are 5 stars, 29,4% are 4 stars, 8,8% are 3 stars and 8,8% are boutique hotels.

In the study, the evaluation form called "Features found in Facebook Pages of the Hotels", developed by Sahbaz and Bayram (2013) based on 21 criteria was used and criteria such as "number of likes", "year of participation" and "frequency of update" were included in this form. As the research method; content analysis, one of the qualitative research methods, was used in the study. Content analysist is defined as analyzing a written or verbal text or symbol and transcribing them into figures and then interpret such; in other words, converting the figures into words (Cinnioglu and Boz, 2015: 256; Cicek et al., 2010: 197). Frequency analysis was frequently used in the content analysis method to determine whether the criteria were included on the pages.

In order to access the official Facebook pages of the halal concept hotel enterprises, internet pages of the hotels were checked to see whether there was a link and if a link was given, the official page was accessed through that link connection. For the establishments not having Facebook links on their internet pages, a search has been made via Facebook. In this method, it was found that sometimes more than one pages opened in the name of an enterprise business. In such cases, the pages were reviewed in full and the official page of the business was tried to be reached. As a result of this research, it was determined that 3 of the 36 halal hotel establishments do not have an official Facebook page. Thus, the study was carried out on 34 hotel establishments.

4. Findings

In the study, Facebook pages of halal hotels located in the Mediterranean region of Turkey were reviewed based on the criteria set. The data obtained are given in details in Table 5 and Table 6 and findings on how effectively halal hotels use their Facebook pages are also given.

As can be seen in Table 5, on the Facebook pages of halal concept hotels, there is not much general information about destinations, only 35.3% of them included destination information on their Facebook pages. 85.3% have a destination map. Current weather information about the destination is only available in 2.9%. It is seen that there is not much information about destinations, events to be organized in the destination and exchange rates. The information about the destination is an important factor to influence the tourists' choice of destination. The remarkable features that differentiate a destination on the Facebook pages of the hotels will positively affect the preferences of the followers while increasing attractiveness of the establishments thanks to the followers.

When information on the Facebook pages of halal concept hotels are reviewed, it was found that 85.3% of the hotels have photo gallery, 64.7% have the general information about the hotel, 47.1% have the hotel promotion slogan, 41.2% of the hotel have videos giving information about the hotel, 85.3% have hotel address information, 85.3% have contact numbers and 52.9% have event information on their pages. When hotels share images and photographs on their Facebook pages as well hotel videos, then tourists will have information about the hotel and when they share their address and contact information, the tourists will get an easy access to the hotels.

When the evaluation questions regarding the utilization of internet Technologies are considered; 38.2% of halal-concept hotel establishments use online booking service via Facebook. 91.2% of the hotel establishments use the web address link on the Facebook page to direct the customers, which provides the convenience for the followers. 23.5% of the hotel enterprises have a referral link to other social networks they use, and through the use of these links, the followers can follow hotel enterprises from other networks. When studies made to increase Facebook followers were reviewed, it was found that 88.2% have a recommend to a friend option; and in 5.9% organize special competitions for social network followers. Further, it was found that none of the hotels in the study shared their policies on their Facebook pages. When special options given to social network followers were reviewed, it was determined that 8,8% provide discounts for followers and 5.9% of them organize contests on social network.

Today, many businesses are able to reach large masses by increasing the number of followers through social networks. In this respect, the more the number of followers on the Facebook pages of halal concept hotel enterprises, the greater the reach of such large masses. However, when we look at Table 6, it is seen that 44% of the hotel enterprises have less than 500 followers, and following 2010, they have mainly created profile pages. It is important to note that how long the hotel businesses use a Facebook page as well as how effective it is. In this context, it is of great importance that halal concept hotels should share information, arrange campaigns, announce their activities and communicate with their customers continuously on their Facebook pages. The more frequently a contact is made with the Facebook page, the greater the likelihood that it will be in the minds of the customers. Accordingly, context, the frequency of page updating / sharing on the page was reviewed along with the effectiveness of the halal-concept hotels and it was found that 41.2% of hotel enterprises updated within the past month, while 26.5% did not update anything for more than one year.

5. Conclusion, Implications and Limitations

Keeping track of innovations and developments in the field of marketing is crucial in terms of making marketing activities of halal hotel enterprises more efficient and cost effective. In this sense, the use of social media offers many advantages, such as promoting services of the hotel and fast communication with customers. However, the quality and applications required on the profile pages created during marketing activities in social networks should not be ignored. In order to use social networks successfully, it is important to keep track of the number of followers by constantly updating the pages. When the number of followers increases, the establishment will be able to reach larger masses. Facebook also provides information about goods and services in addition to friendships and communication. In this study, the Facebook profiles of halal concept hotel establishments in the Mediterranean region of Turkey were analysed to determine the characteristics of the pages.

One of the most remarkable results of the study is that despite the fact that many of the hotel enterprises have a Facebook page, the number of followers and updating frequency of these pages is low. As being the case, halal hotels have realized the importance of using Facebook, yet it turns out that they do not have enough information to manage these pages. It is seen that the number of followers and visitors increases with the effective use of Facebook pages. In this context, responding to criticism and thank you messages on Facebook pages are some of the ways to attract the attention of the customers. Some of the contests, campaigns, and raffles organized on Facebook pages are among the ways to attract the attention of followers to the page. For example; The Wome Deluxe Hotel, located in Antalya, has organized a campaign on Facebook and asked the guests to define a reading corner at the hotel, to write about their favorite reading corners and to send comments publicly in their profiles and 5 guests were given a chance to win a gift check of 250 TL when they like Wome Deluxe Hotel Facebook page. In a similar campaign, Adin Beach Hotel gave its Facebook followers a chance to win various gifts via a raffle if they share a picture of their most beautiful holiday on their own Facebook pages. When the frequency of these and similar campaigns increases, it is likely to increase the numbers of Facebook followers of halal-concept hotel enterprises.

It is observed that many Facebook pages reviewed use photo albums, but only five stars hotels with high number of followers are found to have useful and regular photo albums on their Facebook pages. Likewise, it is observed that video usage rates were lower than photo usage rates, and that videos were added by the hotels that use social media pages regularly and effectively with high number of followers. It is further found that the hotel establishments did not give information about the destination where the hotel is located; they did not share the current weather information and the destination event guise. Therefore, it is very important to share sufficient information about the destination as well as events to be organized and weather information on Facebook pages. It is found that many hotels welcome foreign guests; however, they fail to offer a multi-language option on their Facebook pages.

Online booking option is one of the most effective marketing tools for hotel establishments. The availability of the online booking option on the Facebook page is crucial in terms of making decision for purchase quickly and ensuring such purchase process without changing the decision. One of the most important criteria to be considered before choosing a destination today is the comments and evaluations made by the guests who preferred the hotel establishment before. Within this scope, while halal concept hotel establishments in the study provide evaluation option based on a scoring system, some of them include user comments like TripAdvisor. It is found that Grand Akca Hotel in Antalya shared guests' comments on its Facebook page.

The study also revealed that when Facebook pages of the halal concept hotels were reviewed, it was observed that whether they have halal concept features. As it is known, the halal concept hotels have some features different from the others. Some features can be stated as no alcohol is consumed at halal hotels, only halal food is used, mostly Muslim staff is employed, separate swimming pools, sports facilities and areas for men and women, conservative TV channels, the presence of male employees on male floors and female employees on female floors, every room has a Quran and prayer's rug, lack of entertainment areas such as nightclubs, beds and toilets are placed in the direction of Mecca, every room has the sign of the direction of Mecca. Despite this observation, it is found that many of the hotel enterprises have failed to specify these features on the Facebook pages. However, there are also hotels sharing this information on their Facebook pages. For example; the Facebook page of the Modern Saraylar Hotel in Antalya shares general information such as private areas for male and female guests, lack of alcohol service, and places available for guests' worship. That hotel establishments providing halal services and working towards this purpose share these services in detail is important in terms of informing the guests and providing satisfaction for those preferring this concept. It is suggested that a professional person should carry out social media work to provide effective use of Facebook by hotel establishments and hotels should share information specific to halal concept on their Facebook pages.


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We Are Social Digital Reports. (2016). Accessed: 15.11.2016.

Weidenfeld, A. (2005). Religious Needs in the Hospitality Industry. Tourism ve Hospitality Research, 6(2), pp. 143-159.

Zulkharnain, A. and Jamal, S. A. (2012). Muslim Guest Perception Of Value Towards Syariah Concept Hotel. In A. Zainal, S. Radzi, R. Hashim, C. Chik and R. Abu (Eds.), Current Issues in Hospitality and Tourism, pp. 337-340, Leiden: CRC Press.

Kaplan Ugurlu, Assist.Prof.Dr. (Corresponding Author). Kirklareli University, Tourism Faculty.

Ezgi Aslan, MSc. Kirklareli University, Tourism Management Institute.

Yusuf Ince, MSc. Kirklareli University, Tourism Management Institute.

Author Bibliography

Kaplan Ugurlu has been working at the Tourism Faculty of Kirklareli University for 8 years as an academician. He has worked as a senior manager for more than 20 years in the tourism sector. He specializes in marketing, finance, accounting, cost controlling, hotel openings and business fields. He is a graduate of University of Uludag (BSc in Tourism and Hotel Management), University of Surrey, England (MSc in International Hotel Management) and Marmara University (PhD in Production Management and Marketing). He has more than 40 papers presented and published in national and international congresses and journals.

Ezgi Aslan completed bachelor's degree and master's degree in Kirklareli University in the field Tourism Management between 2010 and 2017. She worked at 5 star hotels. She has been involved in various national and internatinal projects and seminars within the Kirklareli University and also participated courses in personal development, marketing and communication fields. Her reseaches have been presented and published in national and international congresses and journals.

Yusuf Ince got into a bachelor's degree in Tourism Management at Tourism Faculty of Kirklareli University. After completing his undergraduate studies in 2014, he completed his master's thesis on "Evaluation of Kirklareli provinces and districts in terms of religious tourism potential" in the same university, Institute of Social Sciences, Department of Tourism Management. He works in various non-governmental organizations which get into act in the public interest. He has been assigned in national and international social responsibility projects. He is already an administrator in an institution affiliated to the Directorate of National Education in Kirklareli.

Table 1: Internet usage statistics of Turkey, 2016.

                       USE OF INTERNET IN TURKEY (2016)

Total Population       Active Internet users

79.14 MILLION          46.28 MILLION
Growth in the number   Growth in the number
of Active Internet     of Active Social Media
Users                  Users
+10%                   +5%
Average Daily Use of   Average Daily Use of
Internet through       Internet through
Desktops or Laptops    Tablet PCs
4 HOURS 14             2 HOURS
MINITES                35MINUTES
Use of Internet every  Use of internet at least
day                    once a week
77%                    16%

                       USE OF INTERNET IN TURKEY (2016)
                       Active Social Media       Active Social Media
Total Population       Users                     Users through smart

79.14 MILLION          42.00 MILLION             36.00 MILLION
Growth in the number   Growth in Active          Growth in the number
of Active Internet     Mobile Phone              of social media users
Users                  Subscriptions             through smart phones
+10%                   +2%                       +13%
Average Daily Use of   Average Daily Use of      Average Daily TV
Internet through       Social Media via any      watching time
Desktops or Laptops    device
4 HOURS 14             2 HOURS                   2 HOURS
MINITES                32MINUTES                 18MINUTES
Use of Internet every  Use of internet at least  Use of internet at less
day                    once a month              than once a month
77%                    4%                        3%

Source: (We Are Social Digital Reports, 2016).

Table 2: Statistics of the most popular social networks in Turkey, 2016.

          FACEBOOK  32%
          WHATSAPP  24%
           TWITTER  17%
         INSTEGRAM  16%
          GOOGLE +  15%
             SKYPE  13%
         LINK EDIN   9%
             VIBER   8%
              VINE   7%

Source: (We Are Social Digital Reports, 2016).

Note: Table made from bar graph.

Table 3: Facebook profile in Turkey.

             AGE    TOTAL

             TOTAL  42,000,000
             13-19  19%
             20-29  36%
             30-39  23%
             40-49  12%
             50-59   5%
             60+     3%

Source: (We Are Social Digital Reports, 2016).

Table 4: Studies in literature concerning use of Facebook at
accommodation facilities.

Name of
Authors/Year of   Objective of the Study

Hsu (2012)        It is aimed to analyse Facebook pages of
                  five major hotel establishments in
                  Taiwan according to aesthetics, visual
                  quality, content quality, interaction
                  quality, language options, and the
                  effective use levels of pages

Sahbaz and        It is aimed to determine the usage levels
Bayram (2013)     of Facebook pages of 108 five-star hotel
                  establishments located in Antalya based
                  on 21 criteria

Qi et al. (2014)  It is aimed to determine the contents of
                  the Facebook pages of the best holiday
                  hotels in the Macau autonomous region
                  in China according to the dimensions of
                  '' Social Interaction '', '' Hotel
                  Information '', '' Activities '' and ''
                  Entertainment ''.
Eryilmaz and      It is aimed to determine whether 52
Zengin (2014)     boutique hotels in Turkey having
                  tourism business license use social
                  media and Facebook pages effectively.

Turker et al.     It is aimed to determine whether 56
(2014)            hotel establishment of 5 stars, located in
                  Mugla province have company profile
                  on their Facebook pages and level of
                  usage of Facebook profiles.

Cinnioglu and     It is aimed to show how effectively 20
Boz (2015)        hotel establishments in Canakkale
                  region use their Facebook pages.

Name of
Authors/Year of   Result of the Study

Hsu (2012)        The basic information provided
                  by five hotels on their Facebook
                  pages included location, contact
                  numbers and web site links,
                  however, as there was no
                  selection for languages other than
                  Chinese and English, access to
                  the page was limited to domestic
Sahbaz and        The basic information provided
Bayram (2013)     on Facebook pages included
                  contact numbers, location and
                  photo gallery; however, there was
                  not enough information about the
                  destination and prize competition.
Qi et al. (2014)  It has been found that users share
                  more of these sub-categories
                  "Hotel News", "Concerts" and

Eryilmaz and      It is determined that boutique
Zengin (2014)     hotels can be found on Facebook,
                  all of the hotels on Facebook
                  share their photos and 80% of the
                  hotels have customer ratings on
                  their pages and use Facebook not
                  only to share information with
                  their customers but also to
                  interact with them. However,
                  there are a number of
                  shortcomings and problems in
                  page content and management.
Turker et al.     On Facebook pages of the hotels,
(2014)            we found that TripAdvisor
                  excellence certificate,
                  environmentally friendly business
                  document, blue flag etc., "we will
                  call you" practice, HR application
                  where job application can be
                  made, employee of the month,
                  news on hotel. In spite of having
                  Facebook pages, it is found that
                  the number of visitors is low, no
                  frequent update and none of the
                  hotels organizes campaigns,
                  contents and discounts on their
Cinnioglu and     It has been determined that hotel
Boz (2015)        establishments cannot utilize
                  Facebook pages effectively and
                  therefore the staff undergo
                  training by experts or a unit in
                  charge of the social media should
                  be formed.

Table 5: Frequency analysis of the hotel establishments on Facebook

Features on Facebook                        YES        NO      TOTAL
                                          F   %     F   %      N   %

Information on destination                12    35  22     65  34  100
Destination event guide                    6    18  28     82  34  100
Map of destination                        29    85   5     15  34  100
Weather information                        1  2,9   33     97  34  100
Foreign Exchange Rates                     3  8,8   31     91  34  100
Photo Gallery                             29    85   5     15  34  100
General information about the hotel       22    65  12     35  34  100
Hotel Slogan                              16    47  18     53  34  100
Videos on Hotel                           14    41  20     59  34  100
Address information                       29    85   5     15  34  100
Contact numbers                           29    85   5     15  34  100
Pricing information                        8    24  26     77  34  100
Online booking service                    13    38  21     62  34  100
Link on web pages                         31    91   3     88  34  100
Links to other social media network used   8    24  26     77  34  100
Recommend to a friend option              30    88   4     12  34  100
Information about the events              18    53  16     47  34  100
Special discount on social network         3  8,8   31     91  34  100
Competition and prizes on social media     2  5,9   32     94  34  100
Policies on Social network use             0    0   34    100  34  100
Multiple language options                  4    12  30     88  34  100

Table 6: Frequency analysis of overall features of hotel establishments.

General Informations                     Frequency  %

Number of followers   Less than 500      15         44,1
                      Between 500-1000    3          8,8
                      Between 1001-1500   0            0
                      More than 1500     16         47,1
                      Total              34          100
Participation year    2007                1          2,9
                      2008                0            0
                      2009                0            0
                      2010                3          8,8
                      2011                3          8,8
                      2012                2          5,9
                      2013                4         11,8
                      2014                3          8,8
                      2015               10         29,4
                      2016                8         23,5
                      Total              34          100
Frequency of Updates  Less than 1 week   14         41,2
                      From 1 week to 1    5         14,7
                      1-6 months          3          8,8
                      6-12 months         3          8,8
                      More than 1 year    9         26,5
                      Total              34          100
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Article Details
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Author:Ugurlu, Kaplan; Aslan, Ezgi; Ince, Yusuf
Publication:Ottoman: Journal of Tourism and Management Research
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:7TURK
Date:Jun 1, 2018
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