Through a critical synthesis and reflection on the theoretical foundations and empirical evidence related to sensory marketing, this study aims to offer meaningful insights for hospitality operators and provides future research directions on sensory marketing in hospitality.
Building on an extensive review of sensory marketing studies across disciplines, this paper presents critical discussions of the theories and findings on the five senses in the context of hospitality.
The critical synthesis and discussion indicate that sensory marketing is highly relevant and applicable to operations in various hospitality sectors such as hotels and restaurants. Still, empirical evidence is required to lend support to the discussions. Although scholarly interest in sensory marketing has surged in the past decade, some research streams, such as sensory incongruence, cross-modal correspondence and sensory intensity, have yet to be extended. These under-researched areas provide directions for future hospitality research.
Through discussions of empirical evidence related to the five senses, mental simulation, cross-modal correspondence and sensory congruence, this paper provides implications for managing customers’ sensory experiences and behavior in hospitality settings.
Despite the increase of research on sensory marketing in the past decade, its full implications in the context of hospitality remain unknown. Through a critical synthesis and reflection on the hospitality literature, this paper offers research directions for a systematic expansion of sensory marketing.
This research was supported by the Multi-year Research Grant of the University of Macau (no. MYRG2020-00267-FBA).
Fong, L.H.N., Lei, S.S.I., Chow, C.W.C. and Lam, L.W. (2022), "Sensory marketing in hospitality: a critical synthesis and reflection", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-06-2022-0764
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