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Conceptual mindsets and heuristics in credibility evaluation of e-Word of Mouth in tourism

Conceptual mindsets and heuristics in credibility evaluation of e-Word of Mouth in tourism Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to find out how credibility judgements intervene in the consumption of electronic-Word of Mouth (e-WOM) in tourism, as there is discrepancy in the literature about its influence on decision-making processes. Design/methodology/approach – A qualitative approach is explored, based on semi-structured interviews and observation through think-aloud protocol. This methodology provides fruitful insights as it focuses on the users’ browsing habits. The author interviewed a sample of professionals of tourism, cybertourists and bloggers. Findings – Results reveal that only part of e-WOM is granted credibility. Therefore, its persuasiveness depends on those limited positive judgements. Travellers use a conceptual mindset and a series of cognitive heuristics (homophily, crowd consensus, etc.) to assess credibility. Formal knowledge background and social pressures have proven to be weak. Research limitations/implications – This study is limited to a reduced sample of informants but their adjustment to the most typical profiles interviewed compensates this restriction. Another limitation is that data comes from a single cultural context (Spain), but on the other hand provides data that did not exist in the international literature on the topic. Practical implications – Outcomes can help tourism managers to monitor key heuristics employed by end-users in webs of e-WOM and detect new trends of travelling habits. Originality/value – The paper is original in that it establishes the rationalities behind the daily use of cognitive heuristics explored through different traveller's profiles. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Online Information Review Emerald Publishing

Conceptual mindsets and heuristics in credibility evaluation of e-Word of Mouth in tourism

Online Information Review , Volume 38 (7): 15 – Nov 4, 2014

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
1468-4527
DOI
10.1108/OIR-06-2014-0128
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to find out how credibility judgements intervene in the consumption of electronic-Word of Mouth (e-WOM) in tourism, as there is discrepancy in the literature about its influence on decision-making processes. Design/methodology/approach – A qualitative approach is explored, based on semi-structured interviews and observation through think-aloud protocol. This methodology provides fruitful insights as it focuses on the users’ browsing habits. The author interviewed a sample of professionals of tourism, cybertourists and bloggers. Findings – Results reveal that only part of e-WOM is granted credibility. Therefore, its persuasiveness depends on those limited positive judgements. Travellers use a conceptual mindset and a series of cognitive heuristics (homophily, crowd consensus, etc.) to assess credibility. Formal knowledge background and social pressures have proven to be weak. Research limitations/implications – This study is limited to a reduced sample of informants but their adjustment to the most typical profiles interviewed compensates this restriction. Another limitation is that data comes from a single cultural context (Spain), but on the other hand provides data that did not exist in the international literature on the topic. Practical implications – Outcomes can help tourism managers to monitor key heuristics employed by end-users in webs of e-WOM and detect new trends of travelling habits. Originality/value – The paper is original in that it establishes the rationalities behind the daily use of cognitive heuristics explored through different traveller's profiles.

Journal

Online Information ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Nov 4, 2014

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