While a crucial source of inspiration and sharing within the broader booking funnel, Facebook has faltered in its capacity to drive direct bookings. But that does not mean hoteliers have abandoned social media as a distribution channel in general. On the contrary, hoteliers are turning to social media standouts such as TripAdvisor and Twitter to test a new frontier in the bookings landscape, according to sources. Nearly 50% of hotel companies have a booking engine or widget on their Facebook page, according to PhoCusWright’s “Social media in travel: Mayhem, myths, mobile and money” study. Bookings generated through the channel, however, are generally low, with 45% of companies surveyed saying they receive less than 1% of total bookings through the site. “If you think of the way consumers use Facebook as part of their travel experiences, it is very rarely the last point of entry for them,” said Nick Ayres, director of social marketing for InterContinental Hotels Group. Access the content online at HotelNewsNow or download the PDF version at HotelNews Now (free registration)