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Fun, inspiration and discovery: from momentary experiences to overall evaluations

Wei Liu (Department of Tourism, Sport and Hotel Management, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia)
Beverley Sparks (Department of Tourism, Sport and Hotel Management, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia)
Alexandra Coghlan (Department of Tourism, Sport and Hotel Management, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia)

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

ISSN: 0959-6119

Publication date: 10 July 2017

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to use a concurrent mixed method approach to explore the key variables that can influence customer experience at a food and wine event.

Design/methodology/approach

A concurrent mixed methods approach, using a participant-generated image (PGI) method, together with a recall survey, provided images with associated narratives, descriptive statistics, correlations and hierarchical multiple regression analysis to explore how attendees appraise their experiences based on their goals and the link between experience appraisals and overall evaluations.

Findings

Through the PGI method (N = 25), the authors determined that customer experience at the event could be viewed as a hierarchical model, comprising a fundamental sensory experience together with three higher-order customer experience components (fun, discovery and inspiration). A separate concurrent recall study (N = 598) demonstrated the relationship between the same four customer experience components and overall satisfaction as well as recommendation and repeat visitation.

Practical implications

The results suggest that to promote positive customer experiences, along with the product of the event itself, event managers should focus on activity programs that are fun, inspirational and novel, as well as sensory.

Originality/value

This study focuses on a single case study of an event to examine and extend our understanding of customer experience. The use of a concurrent mixed methods approach provides us with different types of data from two separate samples of participants. By integrating data from each study the authors are able to build a conceptual model of the salient dimensions of customer experience and then quantitatively analyze how these salient dimensions are related to outcome variables.

Keywords

Citation

Liu, W., Sparks, B. and Coghlan, A. (2017), "Fun, inspiration and discovery: from momentary experiences to overall evaluations", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 29 No. 7, pp. 1937-1955. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-12-2015-0735

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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