This paper explores how coastal ecotourism marketers can utilize social media to effectively market to millennials. Coastal Tourism is one of four types of ecotourism identified by Honey and Krantz (2007) in their study Global Trends in Coastal Tourism sponsored by the World Wildlife Fund. An online survey of university students from the millennial generation was utilized. Findings indicate that millennials are interested in ecotourism and gather information about it from friends and social media. They check their accounts several times a day and usually from their smartphones. They would choose an ecotourism destination if money were not an issue. They believe it is a good cause and plan to visit an ecotourism destination within the next year. Millennials who are involved in ecotourism decisions and use social media to gather information also intend to visit an ecotourism destination. There is a need to build the literature base as few studies about social media and ecotourism exist. This study is exploratory but does provide a foundation for further research. Coastal ecotourism marketers should utilize a multi-platform approach; put out positive reviews via social media; consider budget-friendly options; and focus on the natural environment and animal conservation efforts. This study extends the literature by bringing together social media marketing, millennials, and ecotourism.



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