1.6 Key customer satisfaction

4. The link between quality service management and customer satisfaction

To increase high ,,quality’’process of tourist services, and with it and the final utility perceived by customers, it is necessary to define the concept of ,,quality’’ and defining quality management tasks. Giving an exact definition of „quality” is not easy, as the notion is under strong effect of context.In our case we can describe the phenomenon as the assessment of value of service by the purchaser of travel service, and the level of satisfaction experienced from these active links.These positive experiences or satisfaction relating thereto, lead to building confidenc, as a key condition to successful business in the long term.

According to Hutchens (2007), quality management is the desire of the company to meet the requirements of stakeholders. The sphere of stakeholders extends to the owners, customers, employees, suppliers or the entire society. In his study, Varga (2009) approaches the issue of „quality management versus management quality”. He offers the following explanation: „In today's world, oriented toward quality management they talk about what is more important:,, quality management’’or ,,management quality”? The first aspect is oriented towards improving customer satisfaction and is able to achieve this by improving the quality of products or services. The latter aspect sets the goal to improving the satisfaction of all stakeholders in connection with business management and therefore it is oriented toward improving the quality elements that make up management. This concept is supported by Juhani Antilla (2008), who says that quality management is equal to management quality, to which extent the management activity carried out to coordinate and supervise an organization meets the expectations of all parties involved in the organization. Thus, according to the theories cited above, it can be differentiated ,,quality management’’, which is oriented towards the creation and increase consumer satisfaction and occurs primarily in the process of value chain of services, while ,, management quality’’ aimes at obtaining satisfaction of all stakeholders. According to Veres (2009), quality management enhances satisfaction through stabilization and/or improvement of value appreciation by users linked to quality of service, and thus help to strengthen the intention to buy again.

Purpose of management quality in tourism:

  1. Developing such a comprehensive package of services whose use has the capacity to meet the needs,  nature experiences, convincing and credible communication package.
  2. Creating a front-office and back-office team motivated and customer-oriented, which has adequate expertise,  needed for service implementation.
  3. Identification and further development of service elements that create values and experiences, and those that influence tourist satisfaction.

In summary, quality management integrates and manages those tasks partialy creative of values, which planning and achievement determines the desired level of performance process and create trust! 

1.2  Development andconcept communication of service package that offers new experiences

As defined in the encyclopedia Magyar Nagylexikon, ,,experience’’as the main creator of value of tourism products is ,,an enhanced emotional experience, which we live or keep in memory as a moment that defines our personality”.

Larousse Encyclopedia defines  experience as an event ,,which leaves a significant memory, sustainable, pleasant or unpleasant of individual; and on the other hand as a psychological phenomenon, which does not express the content of reality, but its meaning for ourselves, giving it an emotional touch.”

It is also illustrative the opinion of the German sociologist Gerhard Schulze view (quoted by Éber, 2007), according to him ,,in societies which get richer, an increasingly important role plays the concept ,,inward life’’, where the defining purpose of action is to trigger the experience. Thus, action is directly focused on the fact that individuals go through something, to live something that may look then as a reflection of wonderful experiences. Experience comes from living a life situations. Processing experiences is performed in collective context: people, when evoking memories, recreate with words their experiences, and through the story they interpret and evaluate their experiences.”

4.1 What is tourist experience for local guests?

Tourist experience is the subjective experience that can be gained during travel. The tourism essence is gaining experiences, using the services can be imagined only if they contribute to the experience.

Experiece can be defined as ,,continuous process of action and living, which has meaning for the individual” (Boswijk et al, 2005 in.: Zátori, 2013). Experiences are very personal, subjectively perceived, intangible, eternally transient, which happens continuously, however, as goods are phenomena implanted in the mind of the individual that occur more randomly(O’Dell, 2005 in.: Zátori, 2013). Tourist experience is the culmination of tourist experience while visiting a touristic area once and spending time there (Graefe and Vaske, 1987 (in.:Zátori, 2013).

Larsen (2007 in.: Zátori, 2013) defines tourist experience as a personal event from the past, during a trip, which is strong enough to be stocked in the memory on long term.

Cole and Scott (2004, in.: Zátori, 2013) recommended four steps of the tourist experience, namely: quality dimensions of performance, size quality of experience, overall satisfaction and intention to return again.

Quan and Wang (2004 in.: Zátori, 2013) suggested that the experiences of tourists to be seen as an organic whole, where defining or highlighted elements of experience (eg. tourist attractions) and experience supporting elements (accomodation, transportation, shopping, etc.) complement each other.

Michalkó and Rátz (2005) confirm that tourist experience can be diversified and among the most characteristic are the following:

  • excitement, adventure,
  • actual or perceived danger,
  • new skills and habits
  • aesthetic
  • privacy,
  • novelty,
  • exotic.

After identification of creating elements, and development of service package, we define, collect and synthesize or express those unique characteristics of services, which characterize us and give a,,reason’’ to future customers to trust our services and to use them. La acest lucru servește marca. Thus, positive collected features- as added value to our services- must be must synthesizeain a brand, then using a creative and compelling marketing message must implant the brand in mind of ,,future clients to get first use or attempt to use our service. As defined by the American Marketing Association, the brand is a name, a term, a sign, a symbol or design, or a combination of these elements, allowing to identify the goods or services of a seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from competition.

The operation of tourism service can not be imagined without the mark, because it synthesizes, embodies and illustrates ,,mentality, culture, company values; respectively it represents the company in the eyes and minds of all those, who are in business relationships. It is important to note that the,,name’’ of tourist service provider is not even close to the company brand. Everything and everyone can have those names, but only few are able - due to lack of marketing work consciously built - to become a brand.

4.3 Why is it necessary that a service provider name to become a brand?

We have seen previously that during the use of travel service buyers meet with a package composed of 7 elements, and based on its quality and value ,,their sense experience’’ is formed and their satisfaction or dissatisfaction. If the front-office and back office staff of the provider are able to obtain during the transaction/transactions satified buyers, then memory of the experience of the service, and the names, shapes, colors attached to it, which represent the brand will awaken feelings, attitudes and positive memories in the consumers. Now, the provider will have not only a name but a brand to look after. Thus , the brand works in the minds of visitors as follows ,,the brand is mostly a visceral feeling inside the person, his attitude towards a product, service or company” (www.papp-vary.hu).Therefore,the brand lives not on firm or leaflets, but especially in the minds of buyers: attitude, positive or negative feeling of people towards products, services or tourism company itself.

Thus, utility of trademark is built mainly on the following factors:

  • Reliable long-term offer(,,We know we can always rely on the brand, it offers more than on no-name product or service”).
  • Quick Decision, comfortable buying, the so-called ,,short-cut’’ (,,We know at a glance what that thing is”).
  • Secure purchase, risk free, guarantee (,, The man knows how and why he receives.”).

Example illustrating the brand and its function

The best restaurant in the world is located in Costa Brava (Spain), a three-star Michelin restaurant called El Bulli. In the restaurant which is opened for six months a year, are served every evening fifty people, while more than two million people try to book a place. The tasting menu consists of forty dishes made with special techniques can be eaten in five hours and costs about 185 euros.

Dr. Hans Schilling and his wife bought a land in Girona in 1961, nearby Barcelona, where they bulit a minigolf field. The couple had several Bulldogs, who are called generic ,,Bulli’’, so they took the name of the field, which was maintained thereafter. The golf field was later transformed into the bar, then in 1964 became a restaurant, whose leadership was entrusted to a Swiss chef. The current owner, Ferran Adrià joined the staff in 1984 and practically the restaurant that be grateful to his activity that todayit is there.He made a huge transformation in the center of which was to stimulate creativity, to be able to present techniques and concepts increasingly new in molecular kitchen area. They organized workshops among others, have provided consulting services to companies in the food industry. The restaurant nearby Barcelona was appointed by Restaurant magazine in 2002, 2006, 2007 and 2008, the best restaurant in the world. They welcome guests only from April to September, and during this period they serve only 8000 evening meals... for which are fighting about 800 thousand people, despite the fact that a meal costs about 250 euros. Since 1997 the restaurant has 3 Michelin stars. (source:www.luxorium.hu)

The issue of fulfilling the function of marking related to tourism services:

As one of the peculiarities previously known of tourist services is dominance of  nonphysical elements (intangible), so in this case it is about ,,a nonphysical message related to solving a nonphysical problem”. Because the existing physical product as a potential mark may not be present, tourist service provider must do all it takes to exploit those opportunities, by which brand strategy can be compensated and made successful. Those elements of ,,brand-contact’’ must be found and created, which are able to transmit reliably to the consumer group values and benefits of the service offered by the tourism company, respectively, the ,,concrete tourism product’’.

These elements may be: webpage, TV advertising, billboard, infrastructural equipment, furniture, personnel, publicity materials and leaflets, forms of business correspondence, sponsorship. If thecommunication activitiesof the provider, planned  and carried out taking into account the particularities of the target group associated with a professional service provider activity is able to maintain customer satisfaction, then he can consider customer loyalty, and we can talk about loyalty towards mark. Of course, we must mention the possible causes of leaving the providers, that may be those from below:

service defects, front-office defects (neglect, rudeness, poor knowledge, lack of information of front-office), discontent related to price (dishonest pricing policy, misleading pricing practice), lack of comfort (poor accessibility, waiting long time), unsatisfactory settlement of customer complaints, omission of complaints management (Veres invoking Keaveney (1995),2009).

If customers vote confidence of brand and their first experience is positive, if the provider provided them a pleasant experience, then customers will be satisfied with the package received. This can lead to a circle of loyal guests, loyal and regularly returning. Another gain due to a circle of satisfied guests can be advertising through word of mouth, when satisfied guests share their experiences with friends, acquaintances and other members of their social relations, thus indirectly they generate a new circle of guests. 

After developing services, it may follow their positioning when using a communication Toolkit consciously formed, we present or communicate our brand and feelings, positive experiences that can be experienced by using our service. Thus it is essential accurate knowledge of media consumption habits of the target group chosen, which we want to address.

Service quality, Service management, Quality management, Nature of experience, Experience, Type of experience, Brand, Elements Brand-contact
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