Making sense of destination experience
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Making Sense of Destination Experience. Cathy Guthrie PhD FTMI FTS September 2008. Outline. Background The Research Destination Experience Processes Elements of destination experience Visitor characteristics How visitors make sense of their experience Implications.

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Making Sense of Destination Experience

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Making sense of destination experience

Making Sense of Destination Experience

Cathy Guthrie PhD FTMI FTS

September 2008


Outline

Outline

  • Background

  • The Research

  • Destination Experience Processes

    • Elements of destination experience

    • Visitor characteristics

    • How visitors make sense of their experience

  • Implications


Background and context

Background and Context

  • 16 years as destination manager

  • Standard surveys – quantity, economic impact, destination benchmarking

  • Support for importance of customer care training

  • Really understand the visitor’s reactions

  • Gap in academic literature


The research

The Research

  • 56 interviews

    • Edinburgh (21 interviews, Oct 2004)

    • Greenwich World Heritage Site (36 interviews, May 2005)

  • 10-50 minutes per interview

  • Key topics, open ended questions

  • Interviews recorded, transcribed, analysed to identify key characteristics of destination experience


Elements of destination experience

Elements of Destination Experience

Holiday

Attitude

Anticipations

Motivations

Place

Interactive

Mode

People

Reactions

Perceptions


Gourmet or gourmand

Gourmet or Gourmand?

  • Gourmet

    • Quality not quantity

    • Connoisseurs, discerning

    • Engages and judges at intellectual level:

      • Cultural, artistic, behavioural standards to evaluate experience and impact of other people

      • Gets closer through appreciating historic, cultural or artistic merits

    • Making sense: compares against standards

    • Forgives from understanding


Gourmet or gourmand1

Gourmet or Gourmand?

  • Gourmand

    • See and do as much as possible

    • Self image: seen everything, well travelled

    • Engages and judges at emotional level

      • Physical/emotional comfort of self and group used to evaluate impact of and interactions with other people

      • Gets closer through making connections with own personal or family situation/history

    • Making sense: compares against own previous experiences

    • Forgives through empathy


Comparison

Comparison

Forgiven

Not

Forgotten

Destination

Experience

Comparison

Making Sense

Standards

Reporting

Previous Experience

Self vs. Others

Home

Holiday


Making sense of destination experience

Experience

Interactions

Predispositions

Anticipations

Predispositions

Comparison

Justification

Reporting

Sense Making

to Self

Stories

Word of Mouth


So what

So What?

  • Helps in planning and developing destination offer

  • Complement marketing messages with additional signposting

  • Impact of residents and non frontline staff attitudes/behaviour

  • Can be developed to add deeper insights to existing visitor surveys


Questions

Cathy Guthrie PhD FTMI FTS

Tel: +44 1467 620769 Mob: +44 7802 679489

E-mail: [email protected]

Questions?


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