How does fake news impact hospitality leadership?
Many people read online and offline reviews. Whether for a location, hotel, restaurant or company, a review is posted and there is no real fact checker. It’s a subjective opinion and most of us know that.
A review posted on a trusted website or in a publication is usually considered to be authentic. However, the rise of fake news has some people questioning the truth of the content.
Digital has changed the game and fake news is now one of the players. These stories tend to be associated with groups or individuals using social media platforms to spread sensational stories.
What does fake news means for hospitality?
Most organisations within hospitality are digital in some form, from the basics of a website to a fully operating social strategy involving Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. It may be an effective way of communicating a message and growing support and business but times are changing.
A recent report from the CMO Council surveyed 2,000 adults across the UK, US and Canada. It found that social media platforms were the least trusted by consumers amongst the top media channels.
The reason? A lack of trust and rise of objectionable content.
The survey found:
- 60% of consumers state that offensive content appearing on the likes of Facebook and Twitter had already caused them to “consume more content from trusted, well-known news sources and established media channels”.
- 48% will abandon brands they love should they see their ads appear next to ‘objectionable’ online content or on fake news sites
- 11% would “not do business with that brand”
- 9% say they would become vocal critics of the brand
View the full survey here.
The findings are fascinating, especially as some people and companies begin to look at the development of future leaders. Companies have hidden behind their brand but if the brand feels the impact from fake news, what does that mean? In response we will need to put people front and centre – we need visible leaders.
EP believes that the key is going back to what this industry is built on – people. Make teams important once again and develop life and social skills that may have been forgotten or simply not passed on. Leadership centres can support this, whether through Think Tanks to broaden knowledge, team building activities or learning real life skills.
Great people working in a great culture will mean a great business.
For more on EP’s Leadership activity: Ben.Butler@epmagazine.co.uk