The long tail of destination image and online marketing

Bing Pan, Xiang Robert Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

177 Scopus citations


This study examines the linguistic structure of destination image using China as an example. The phrases the tourists use to describe China's image follow the power-law distribution and exhibit the long tail pattern. The destination image is dominated by a few very popular phrases, but contains a large amount of phrases in small niches. Analysis on Google keyword search volumes shows that those phrases are likely to be the keywords tourists use when searching destination information online. In addition, the tourists who use those niche phrases are more likely to travel to China. Thus, Destination Marketing Organizations should promote the niche images as well as the commonly held images in their online marketing effort.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)132-152
Number of pages21
JournalAnnals of Tourism Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Development
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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