By Shubhodeep Pal

Over the last year, SimpliFlying went pretty big with infographics. Big both in terms of the issues we tackled and the buzz we generated. We scored especially huge hits with our social future of loyalty and resources dedicated to social media infographics, apart from the regular Monthly Airlines on Twitter Report published in partnership with Eezeerdatalab.

And now, we’re kicking off the New Year with a bang as we present a new infographic, in partnership with our friends at Eyefortravel, on a burning issue that airlines and travel marketers in general will be looking to tackle over the next twelve months. Two questions in particular are addressed in this infographic:

  1. In what direction does the industry see social media evolving?
  2. What business goals travelers are driving and if they’re calculating ROI

While we do seem to have a consensus on the answer to the first question – the future is certainly mobile – uncertainty remains about how to measure ROI on social media. (We’ve tackled this briefly in a previous infographic as well). The uncertainty looms large primarily because while there are divergent ways in which people do measure ROI, there is also a section that questions the need to measure ROI when the benefits are so obvious.

Here are some interesting findings we’d like to highlight:

  1. Location-based services such as Foursquare will be huge this year. Almost half of all the airlines surveyed wish to increase their presence in location-based social networks in 2012 (they’re going to get you while you travel!)
  2. Over 70% of travel marketers are using social media to “build their brands” – a typically “fluffy” or qualitative goal which often can’t be measured in concrete terms
  3. More marketers (56% vs 45%) are confident of having unlocked useful data to measure ROI on their mobile strategies vs general social media strategies.
  4. Almost 60% of marketers are either sure of the conversions to booking rate via Facebook or have a fair idea, which is rather impressive.

Note: All findings are sourced from Eyefortravel’s “Social Media and Mobile Strategies for the Travel Industry 2011″ report. The full report can downloaded here. You can use the discount code: SIMP100 to save $100!

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Do you think this infographic makes perfect (or less than perfect) sense? What were your main takeaways from the stats presented here? Let us know what you think of this infographic in the comments below or tweet us @simpliflying. You can find more infographics here.

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