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Innovation in destination marketing: The use of passive mobile positioning for the segmentation of repeat visitors in Estonia

Andres Kuusik (Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia)
Margus Tiru (Positium LBS, Tartu, Estonia)
Rein Ahas (Department of Geography, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia)
Urmas Varblane (Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia)

Baltic Journal of Management

ISSN: 1746-5265

Article publication date: 13 September 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how technological innovation serves as an enabling factor to innovation in tourism management. The motivation of this paper is related to the question of how to innovate destination marketing as a tool to manage long‐term customer relationships.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use mobile positioning‐based research methods to measure visitors' behaviour. This provides new data for the detection and measurement of destination loyalty that could be used as valuable input to improve destination marketing strategy and develop new services.

Findings

The use of mobile positioning helps to improve the quality of data about tourism flows in Estonia. The authors were able to observe and measure the duration, timing, density, seasonality and dynamics of visitations. Further, it allowed also to distinguish repeat visitors. The rich dataset provided by passive mobile positioning (PMP) allowed the implementation of the proposed, more detailed, classification of segments of repeat visitors and the identification of not loyal, somewhat loyal, loyal, very loyal, functionally loyal and forced to be loyal visitors. This analysis made it possible to reveal transit, long‐term, one‐day and other specific visitors among repeat visitors.

Originality/value

The theoretical novelty of the paper consists in the creation of the innovation model of the destination marketing of the country and providing the new approach of segmentation of repeat visitors. Empirical novelty is the use of PMP in studying repeat visitations for destination marketing. The paper offers new ways for governments to shape service policies and allows tourism industry firms to offer new services.

Keywords

Citation

Kuusik, A., Tiru, M., Ahas, R. and Varblane, U. (2011), "Innovation in destination marketing: The use of passive mobile positioning for the segmentation of repeat visitors in Estonia", Baltic Journal of Management, Vol. 6 No. 3, pp. 378-399. https://doi.org/10.1108/17465261111168000

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited