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Do the brand and packaging matter? The case of hotel bathroom amenities

Miyoung Jeong (School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, USA)
Marketa Kubickova (School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, USA)

Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights

ISSN: 2514-9792

Article publication date: 7 October 2020

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Abstract

Purpose

Creating memorable experiences for customers at the individual property is one of the primary goals in hotel management across all segments. Adopting the concept of the ingredient branding, this study aims to attempt to identify the effects of bathroom amenity brands on customers' attitudes toward the hotel brand image and their behavior intentions toward a hotel brand. Specifically, this study assesses the importance of bathroom amenities on customer experience. It also examines the effects of bathroom amenity and their sustainable practices on hotel brand image and behavior intentions. Lastly, it provides suggestions for hoteliers in selecting right and appealing bathroom amenities while enhancing customers' hotel experience.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employed a 3 (hotel service level: economy, midscale, vs luxury) × 2 (bathroom amenity brand: luxury vs general) × 2 (bathroom amenity packaging: bottle vs dispenser) between-subjects experimental design. A total of 557 useable surveys were obtained to test the study's hypotheses.

Findings

The results reveal that customers had a better hotel image when high-end brand bathroom amenities in a bottle were offered. Specifically, when economy hotels provided high-end brand bathroom amenities, customers had a better hotel image, which lead to strong return intentions. Typically, bathroom amenities in the bottle were perceived better than those in the dispenser when it came to the hotel image.

Practical implications

The findings of this study reconfirm that the level of hotel service, bathroom amenity brand and bathroom amenity packaging jointly affect hotels' overall image. Specifically, the generic bathroom amenity in the dispenser somewhat degrades the image of the hotel for economy hotels; however, the image of hotel is not significantly affected by the type of bathroom packaging when the hotel has luxury bathroom amenities. Thus, hotel management should pay more attention to selecting the bathroom amenity brand, which can offer more memorable experience for customers.

Originality/value

Little research has been documented on the effects of hotel bathroom amenity brands on customers' attitudes toward hotel brand image and their psychological behaviors in the hotel industry, lacking rigorous theoretical examinations. The current study provides several important contributions not only to the body of knowledge but to the hotel industry.

Keywords

Citation

Jeong, M. and Kubickova, M. (2020), "Do the brand and packaging matter? The case of hotel bathroom amenities", Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JHTI-03-2020-0030

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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