Destination Image Gaps Between Official Tourism Websites and User-Generated Content
The aim of this paper is to analyse and compare destination image on official tourism websites with the image expressed by tourists in travel blogs and reviews in order to assess image congruency and identify image gaps at different geographical brand levels. This is done through a massive computerized semi-automatic content analysis of attraction factors and geographical elements on official tourism websites and in 46,576 travel blogs and review entries about Catalonia and its sub-regional brands. Our results show relative image congruency at regional level, but significant image gaps at sub-regional levels, indicating the need for coordinated image policies at different geographical levels.
KeywordsOfficial tourism websites Projected image User-generated content Travel blogs and reviews Perceived image Catalonia
This work was supported by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness [Grant id.: MOVETUR CSO2014-51785-R].
- Anton Clavé, S. (2010). Identity and tourism. Between image and perception. Paradigmes, 5, 156–165.Google Scholar
- Bui, T. L. H. (2011). Congruency between the projected and perceived destination image of Vietnam. Journal of International Business Research, 10(2), 1–13.Google Scholar
- Chen, H. J., Yung, C. Y., & Wang, M. H. (2008). Perception gaps between tourist blogs and travel information on destination image. 26th EuroCHRIE Conference, Oct. 12–14, Dubai.Google Scholar
- Dinnie, K. (2008). Nation branding: Concepts, issues, practice. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann.Google Scholar
- Dragova, S., Petrovskaya, K., & Egger, R. (2014). Measuring the perceived image of Lithuania through its destination management organization website. In Z. Xiang & I. Tussyadiah (Eds.), Information and communication technologies in tourism 2014 (pp. 679–691). Cham, Switzerland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-03973-2_49.Google Scholar
- Echtner, C. M., & Ritchie, J. R. B. (2003). The meaning and measurement of destination image. Journal of Tourism Studies, 14(1), 37–48.Google Scholar
- Eurobarometer. (2015). Flash Eurobarometer 414: Preferences of Europeans towards tourism. Brussels, Belgium: European Commission.Google Scholar
- Eurostat. (2014). Tourism. In Eurostat regional yearbook 2014 (pp. 187–210). Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union.Google Scholar
- Fernández-Cavia, J., & Huertas-Roig, A. (2009). City brands and their communication through Web sites: Identification of problems and proposals for improvement. In M. Gasco-Hernandez & T. Torres-Coronas (Eds.), Information communication technologies and city marketing: Digital opportunities for cities around the world (pp. 26–49). Hershey, EEUU: Idea Group Inc.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Govers, R. (2010). Destination eBrands. 17th International Conference on Information Technology and Travel & Tourism. Lugano: ENTER 2010.Google Scholar
- Krizman, D. & Belullo, A. (2007). Internet – An agent of Tourism destination image formation: Content and correspondence analysis of Istria travel related websites. 4th International Conference: Global Challenges for Competitiveness: Business and Government Perspective (pp. 541–556). Pula: Juraj Dobrila University of Pula, Department of Economics and Tourism.Google Scholar
- Marine-Roig, E., & Anton Clavé, S. (2015a). A method for analysing large-scale UGC data for tourism: Application to the case of Catalonia. In I. Tussyadiah & A. Inversini (Eds.), Information and communication technologies in tourism (pp. 3–17). Cham, Switzerland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-14343-9_1.Google Scholar
- Marine-Roig, E. & Anton Clavé, S. (2015b). Tourism analytics with massive user-generated content: A case study of Barcelona. Journal of Destination Marketing and Management. doi: 10.1016/j.jdmm.2015.06.004.
- Perry, M. (1978). Comparison of tourist destinations image as perceived by travellers and travel agents. Journal of the School of Business Administration, 1(3).Google Scholar