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Book part
Publication date: 15 September 2016

Ahmad Azmi M. Ariffin and Noor Balkhis Omar

The main purpose of this chapter is to investigate whether hotel hospitality mediates and/or moderates the relationships between surprise experience and customer delight

Abstract

The main purpose of this chapter is to investigate whether hotel hospitality mediates and/or moderates the relationships between surprise experience and customer delight in the context of hotel services. This study, involving 300 Malaysian and non-Malaysian hotel guests, employs questionnaire surveys as the main data collection method. The results indicate that there is a strong and positive relationship between surprise and customer delight, and hotel hospitality mediates and also moderates the abovementioned direct relationship.

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Tourism and Hospitality Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-714-4

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Article
Publication date: 30 June 2021

Semra Aktas-Polat and Serkan Polat

The purpose of this study is to discover the factors affecting customer delight, satisfaction and dissatisfaction in fine dining experiences (FDEs).

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to discover the factors affecting customer delight, satisfaction and dissatisfaction in fine dining experiences (FDEs).

Design/methodology/approach

Online user generated 2,585 reviews on TripAdvisor for 46 five-star hotel restaurants operating in Istanbul were analyzed with the latent Dirichlet allocation (LDA) algorithm.

Findings

LDA created nine, eight and seven topics for delight, satisfaction and dissatisfaction, respectively. The most salient topics for customer delight, satisfaction and dissatisfaction in FDEs are staff (17.3%), view (19%), and food quality (23%), respectively.

Originality/value

This study is one of the few studies investigating customer delight and satisfaction together. The study shows that FDEs can be analyzed with text mining techniques. Moreover, the study contributes to the literature on customer delight by adding staff topic as an antecedent.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 124 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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Article
Publication date: 5 May 2020

A. Parasuraman, Joan Ball, Lerzan Aksoy, Timothy Lee Keiningham and Mohamed Zaki

Responding to an increasing call for a more comprehensive conceptualization of customer delight, the purpose of this paper is to expand the theory of customer delight and…

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1051

Abstract

Purpose

Responding to an increasing call for a more comprehensive conceptualization of customer delight, the purpose of this paper is to expand the theory of customer delight and to examine the implications of such an expanded view for service theory and practice.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper presents the results of three qualitative studies. The first study explores customer delight through self-reported consumption experiences in customer-selected contexts, followed by one-on-one in-depth interviews. The second involves focus groups and the third examines self-reported incidents of delightful customer experiences.

Findings

This research finds that customer delight goes beyond extreme satisfaction and joy and surprise to include six properties that—individually or in combination—characterize customer delight. An expanded conceptualization of how customer delight can be defined is proposed in which customer delight is associated with various combinations of six properties – the customer experiencing positive emotions, interacting with others, successful problem-solving, engaging customer’s senses, timing of the events and sense of control that characterizes the customer's encounter.

Research limitations/implications

It is clear from the findings of this research that there is no single property that is associated with delight. Through the facilitation of multiple properties, managers have the potential to create a multitude of routes to delight. It is recommended that future research (1) identify and explicate these alternative routes for engendering delight using the six properties identified, and (2) develop a general typology based on service context and characteristics, customer segment, etc. that further stimulates scholarship on delight, and offers more industry-specific insights for managers.

Practical implications

Insights from this investigation will encourage managers and service designers to think more broadly and creatively about delight. Doing so will open up new opportunities for achieving customer delight, beyond merely focusing on extreme satisfaction or surprise and joy strategies currently dominating discussions of customer delight.

Originality/value

This paper makes several contributions to the service literature. First, it extends current conceptualizations of customer delight and offers an expanded definition. Next, it demonstrates how this new understanding extends the existing literature on delight. Finally, it proposes an agenda for future delight research and discusses managerial implications, opening up new opportunities for firms to design delightful customer experiences.

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Journal of Service Management, vol. 32 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 27 August 2020

Chiu-Ying Kao, Sheng-Hshiung Tsaur and Chung-Ching Huang

The purpose of this study is to develop and validate a hospitality cultural scale for measuring the effect of organizational culture on customer delight (OCCD).

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to develop and validate a hospitality cultural scale for measuring the effect of organizational culture on customer delight (OCCD).

Design/methodology/approach

A literature review and focus group discussion were conducted to generate an initial item pool. Subsequently, three individual samples of hotel employees were identified to develop and validate the OCCD scale. Exploratory factor analysis was conducted for item purification and factor extraction, and confirmatory factor analysis verified the factor structure of the OCCD construct. Finally, several validity tests were examined to further support the OCCD construct.

Findings

The results of the analyses indicated that the OCCD construct contains eight factors: the customer delight service control system, expected competencies for customer delight, shared values for customer delight, employee empowerment for customer delight, expected norms for customer delight, superior service environment, customer delight competency development and customer delight service scripting. These factors reflect theories of cultural layers.

Practical implications

The developed OCCD scale can provide hospitality managers a self-evaluation and diagnostic instrument to enable their cultural improvement. In addition, OCCD scale can garner employee consensus and further facilitate the effectiveness of human resources management.

Originality/value

This study developed an organizational cultural scale to explore the importance of customer delight in the hospitality industry. It expanded academically the current knowledge of organizational culture and customer delight.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 32 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 4 August 2020

Donald C. Barnes, Jessica Mesmer-Magnus, Lisa L. Scribner, Alexandra Krallman and Rebecca M. Guidice

The unprecedented dynamics of the COVID-19 pandemic has forced firms to re-envision the customer experience and find new ways to ensure positive service encounters. This…

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2242

Abstract

Purpose

The unprecedented dynamics of the COVID-19 pandemic has forced firms to re-envision the customer experience and find new ways to ensure positive service encounters. This context has underscored the reality that drivers of customer delight in a “traditional” context are not the same in a crisis context. While research has tended to identify hedonic need fulfillment as key to customer well-being and, ultimately, to invoking customer delight, the majority of studies were conducted in inherently positive contexts, which may limit generalizability to more challenging contexts. Through the combined lens of transformative service research (TSR) and psychological theory on hedonic and eudaimonic human needs, we evaluate the extent to which need fulfillment is the root of customer well-being and that meeting well-being needs ultimately promotes delight. We argue that in crisis contexts, the salience of needs shifts from hedonic to eudaimonic and the extent to which service experiences fulfill eudaimonic needs determines the experience and meaning of delight.

Design/methodology/approach

Utilizing the critical incident technique, this research surveyed 240 respondents who were asked to explain in detail a time they experienced customer delight during the COVID-19 pandemic. We analyzed their responses according to whether these incidents reflected the salience of hedonic versus eudaimonic need fulfillment.

Findings

The results support the notion that the salience of eudaimonic needs become more pronounced during times of crisis and that service providers are more likely to elicit perceptions of delight when they leverage meeting eudaimonic needs over the hedonic needs that are typically emphasized in traditional service encounters.

Originality/value

We discuss the implications of these findings for integrating the TSR and customer delight literatures to better understand how service experiences that meet salient needs produce customer well-being and delight. Ultimately, we find customer delight can benefit well-being across individual, collective and societal levels.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 32 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2017

Nadine L. Ludwig, Sven Heidenreich, Tobias Kraemer and Matthias Gouthier

Over the last years, the concept of customer delight has moved into the focus of attention. The necessity of surprise for achieving customer delight and the problem of…

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1250

Abstract

Purpose

Over the last years, the concept of customer delight has moved into the focus of attention. The necessity of surprise for achieving customer delight and the problem of increased customer expectation (spiral of expectations) have been controversially discussed in the literature. The purpose of the paper is therefore to investigate whether customer delight necessarily requires surprise and whether a misdirected delight strategy can backfire by creating disloyal customers.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employs a 2 (after-sales extra value: yes vs no)×2 (knowledge about the extra value: yes vs no) between-subject, scenario-based experiment (n=472) in a hotel environment and partial least squares structural equation modeling to analyze the data.

Findings

Study results show that surprise is not a necessary prerequisite for achieving customer delight, but its presence strengthens the delight experience for the customer, positively impacting customer loyalty intentions. Conversely, a surprising nonoccurrence of an expected delight measure causes anger, inducing negative word of mouth and reduced repurchase intentions.

Practical implications

To pursue a sustainable customer delight approach, companies should recognize that they do not need to surprise their customers on every occasion, but rather ensure that customers do not fall short of anticipated delightful events.

Originality/value

The current research strives to contribute to the theory and practice by shedding light on two so far not appropriately addressed research areas of customer delight: the necessity of surprise to evoke customer delight and the consequences of absent but expected delight measures.

Details

Journal of Service Theory and Practice, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2055-6225

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Article
Publication date: 8 January 2018

Edwin N. Torres and Giulio Ronzoni

The present research aims to summarize the literature on customer delight, identify trends and debates, create an instrument to measure delight and propose directions for…

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2089

Abstract

Purpose

The present research aims to summarize the literature on customer delight, identify trends and debates, create an instrument to measure delight and propose directions for future research.

Design/methodology/approach

A comprehensive review of the literature has been undertaken. Flowing from a variety of conceptual, qualitative and quantitative articles, operational measures have been identified, and an instrument to measure customer delight has been proposed.

Findings

Past research on customer delight identified various emotions that trigger delight, as well as human needs, traits and behaviors associated with delightful experiences, and features of the service experience commonly related to delight. On the basis of these findings, the researchers have developed an instrument to measure customer delight.

Practical implications

The proposed instrument enables managers to measure customer delight in various service settings. Measuring and attaining higher levels of customer delight can help generate greater loyalty as compared to customer satisfaction.

Originality/value

The authors unify the conceptualization and measurement of customer delight and create a new instrument to measure the construct. Similarities and debates in the past research are identified, and directions for the future of customer delight are presented. Future studies can further test and validate the presented instrument in various service industries.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 30 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2017

Joan Ball and Donald C. Barnes

The purpose of this paper is to combine the evolving fields of customer delight and positive psychology to investigate a broader conceptualization of customer delight

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1329

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to combine the evolving fields of customer delight and positive psychology to investigate a broader conceptualization of customer delight. Furthermore, to investigate antecedent variables that impact this broader conceptualization.

Design/methodology/approach

This research employed structural equation modeling in a hedonic context.

Findings

Key findings indicate that aside from joy and surprise, gratitude also has a positive impact on customer delight. Furthermore, psychological sense of brand community (PSBC) and transcendent customer experiences (TCE) were shown to positively impact the proximal antecedents of customer delight.

Research limitations/implications

Extending the domain of customer delight beyond joy and surprise contributes to the theoretical discussion on what customer delight represents to the service firm. Further, this research identifies new theoretical relationships between PSBC/TCE and customer delight.

Practical implications

By offering the broader conceptualization of customer delight, this research contributes to the discussion of whether delight is possible or even profitable. Namely, by moving past joy/surprise, this research suggests that managing gratitude can be a strategic lever that the modern service firm can utilize.

Originality/value

This is the first research to evaluate gratitude as an antecedent to customer delight. Further, by combining positive psychology and delight research this research identifies new predictors of positive customer experiences.

Details

Journal of Service Theory and Practice, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2055-6225

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Article
Publication date: 14 December 2017

Edwin N. Torres, Ady Milman and Soona Park

Despite multiple studies of customer delight in various service industries, limited research exists in the hedonically driven theme park context. The purpose of this paper…

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3385

Abstract

Purpose

Despite multiple studies of customer delight in various service industries, limited research exists in the hedonically driven theme park context. The purpose of this paper is to explore the key drivers of customer delight and outrage in theme parks by analyzing TripAdvisor’s comments from visitors to the top 20 North American theme parks.

Design/methodology/approach

Following the analysis of thousands of extremely positive and negative comments using MAXQDA qualitative software, keywords drivers of delight and outrage were identified. The researchers applied both thematic and root cause in order to ascertain the sources leading to both positive and negative consumer feedback.

Findings

Delighted guests relayed various aspects of their experience including positive affect experience, positive value perceptions, and limited wait times. Root causes that influenced customer delight included: excellent core product, quality food and beverage, servicescape, pricing decisions, and low visitor demand or sensible admissions policies. Outraged guests described various aspects of their experiences such as negative perceptions of value, long waits, poor customer service, and negative emotions. Root causes for customer outrage included low quality or deficient core products, poor quality of food and beverage, poor facility maintenance, aggressive pricing decisions, poor staff selection, training, and working conditions, and high customer demand on any given date or aggressive admissions policies.

Originality/value

The present research is unique in that it exposes the key themes of customer delight and outrage in the theme park setting, presents a conceptual model, and analyzes its root causes.

Details

Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Insights, vol. 1 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9792

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Article
Publication date: 15 August 2019

Prince Dubey, Naval Bajpai, Sanjay Guha and Kushagra Kulshreshtha

Entrepreneurial marketing is a hybrid concept of entrepreneurship and marketing defining business for future challenges. This study aims to examine the following two…

Abstract

Purpose

Entrepreneurial marketing is a hybrid concept of entrepreneurship and marketing defining business for future challenges. This study aims to examine the following two issues of entrepreneurial marketing concerning impact of perceived quality on customer delight: first, identifying entrepreneurial marketing factors of delight and customer perceived quality to develop the model; second, applying the aforesaid model to discriminate customer delight in categories of gender as male delight and female delight.

Design/methodology/approach

In this endeavour, the authors examined the data collected from survey of Indian mobile users. In total ten perceived quality predictor variables are used to measure customer delight. Further, for identifying the difference in male delight and female delight, discriminant analysis is used.

Findings

The conceptual and empirical vantage point of study provides a framework to entrepreneurs emphasizing on male and female customers distinctly during marketing.

Research limitations/implications

The results are used to sketch the profile of male and female customer segment, and innovative applications are discussed for business success. Though proposed approach is limited to gender, mobile users still open the avenue for researchers to work on other demographic factors and product categories.

Practical implications

The theoretical underpinnings warrant practical applications of quality dimensions in telecom market for creation of customer delight. The present gender classification of customer delight will assist the entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs and product developers in developing the competitive business policy.

Social implications

The classification of male and female delight suggests the female segment of Indian telecom market is socially important and as similar to the male segment.

Originality/value

The study is a novel assessment of customer delight on gender quality perception contributing the newly explored concept of entrepreneurial marketing.

Details

Journal of Research in Marketing and Entrepreneurship, vol. 22 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-5201

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