Gender Differences in Travel Vlog Information Preferences
Department of Information Systems, City University of Hong Kong
Wenyi Cheng, Dickson K.W. Chiu
Faculty of Education, The University of Hong Kong
What do people like to look at in travel vlogs? Do men and women seek different travel information? Do people share travel vlogs? We have investigated the impact of travel vlogs on tourists’ decision-making (e.g., about travel destinations, excursion activities, etc.), particularly concerning the types of information they prefer and the gender difference characteristics contained therein (Cheng et al., 2023). In this study, travel vlogs refer to videos that travelers post on various online platforms, such as YouTube, to document their travel experiences. These user-generated contents have gained much attention recently and have become important reference material for many Internet users before their self-guided trips (Cheung et al., 2023).
—travel vlogs can significantly impact tourists’ decision-making—
What content do audiences like to see in travel vlogs?
We conducted an online survey collecting responses from 350 young audiences, as most vlog viewers are younger tech-savvies (Lam et al., 2023; Tsang and Chiu, 2022). Different genders have different preferences and tendencies for vlog information for travel, affecting viewers’ attitudes and perceptions of the content and ultimately influencing tourists’ decisions.
Our results show that travel vlogs can significantly impact tourists’ decision-making. Specifically, travelers use travel vlogs to gather information about destinations, accommodations, tourist activities, and local culture. They also rely on travel vlogs to find out what a destination would be like before making travel plans.
We found that women tend to look at travel vlogs more than men regarding specific preferences for information. Yet, both genders also show similar information search habits and trusted travel sources. Specifically, both genders consider traditional vertical platforms, search engines, and vlogs as essential travel information sources. In addition, the gender consistency in ranking travel information preferences is roughly consistent. Local cuisine (83.33% male, 89.8% female) and travel tips were ranked top. Other information that both genders wanted to know included scenery (78.57% men, 73.47% women), cultural customs (66.67% men, 73.47% women), and accommodations (54.76% men, 61.22% women). Second, high percentages of both genders recognize the usefulness of the information in food (nearly 70%), sights and attractions (53%), and lodging (about 44%).
In contrast, only about 20% of the audience considers shopping and entertainment information useful. Regarding the features of video blogs, respondents generally prefer more intuitive, realistic, and engaging features, which is an understandable advantage of the information in video format.
Are they willing to share and continue to view it?
The intention to share the content of the vlog was generally neutral regarding perceptions and attitudes toward video blogging. Neither male nor female participants showed an apparent inclination to share or had not yet considered. Video platforms could optimize display mechanisms to push information out to a more potentially interested audience and offer more interactive possibilities, providing a higher sense of self-fulfillment for video bloggers to share valuable content.
We also found participants’ attitudes and perceptions toward vlogs generally positive. Notably, participants felt that video blog content influenced their travel decisions, may have inspired them to travel, and created a demand for more travel. Therefore they would continue to use vlogs for subsequent trips as a source of information. However, the privacy risk of video blogs potentially invading the privacy of others or causing personal privacy issues was the only significant negative issue identified by participants and requires improvement. As respondents tended to be less positive about the efficiency and convenience of their access to information, this finding reveals a potential barrier to the development of travel video blogs for informational purposes.
Gender Differences in Travel Decision-Making and Implications for Practitioners?
Also, for gender differences, beyond the information preferences, it is worth noting that the biggest difference between the two genders is whether or not travel vlogs can evoke travel or generate travel ideas for them. Interestingly, almost no female participants felt they could completely escape the influence of travel video blogs, but some males felt they could make their travel decisions independently without any influence from vlogs. Therefore, marketers can provide gender-specific information to attract specific target groups, but if they primarily target male travelers, they may not rely only on video blogs.
Our study concludes that travel vlogs have become a valuable source of information for tourists and that their influence on visitor decisions is likely to continue growing, especially for young and self-driven tourists (Ni et al., 2022). We also suggest that travel vloggers and businesses can use these findings to tailor their content and marketing strategies to the gender preferences of specific target audiences.
In summary, our study shows that travel vlogs are changing people’s travel decisions and that their impact is significant. The findings also suggest that females and males have varying preferences regarding the types of information they value in their travel vlogs. The results of this study may have implications for travel bloggers and travel organizations looking to reach specific audiences and provide them with customized information.
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Cite this article in APA as: Tian, R., Cheng, W., & Chiu, D. K. W. (2023, March 8). Gender differences in travel vlog information preferences. Information Matters, Vol. 3, Issue 3. https://informationmatters.org/2023/03/gender-differences-in-travel-vlog-information-preferences/