Date of Award

Spring 4-28-2023

Document Type

Honors Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Communication and Digital Studies

Department Chair or Program Director

Rao, Anand

First Advisor

Goldman, Adria

Major or Concentration

Communication and Digital Studies


As the influence of social media on the tourism marketing industry continues to grow, it becomes necessary to analyze how these platforms are being used. This study aims to determine the ways in which the combination of visuals and written copy in an Instagram post work to create an advertisable overall image of Southeast Asian countries as tourist destinations.

Using a qualitative content analysis, twenty seven posts from the official tourism Instagram accounts of Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines were analyzed to determine what overall image is being presented, how this is being accomplished, and if the advertisement of these places and people is being done ethically.

Results revealed that these accounts all use compelling written and visual rhetoric in the social media copy and visual of their posts in order to market these countries as the ideal tourist destination. It was further determined that content relating to ethical tourism is not a significant theme found across these selected Instagram accounts.