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Document Type

Open Access

Degree Program

Hotel & Tourism Management

Degree Type

Master of Science (M.S.)

Year Degree Awarded

2013

Month Degree Awarded

February

Keywords

Source credibility, eWOM, perceived risk, consumer behavior

Abstract

As technology advances, the influence of electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM) surpasses the influence of traditional face-to-face WOM communication on consumers’ decision making. Since the hospitality and tourism products and services contain more interpersonal interaction that needs to be experienced by consumers, the influence of eWOM in the hospitality industry is more significant than in other industries.

The main purpose of this study is to examine the relationships among source credibility of eWOM, customers’ perceived risk, and their behavior intentions to use consumer generated media. The result provides evidence about the influence of eWOM on overall perceived risk and how consumers use eWOM to manage and reduce the potential risks when making their lodging decisions. Academically, it confirms the significance of eWOM influence and connects the gap in the previous literatures between source credibility of eWOM and perceived risk research. Practically, hoteliers can set their marketing strategies precisely aimed to consumers’ needs and are able to build good reputations through those online travel forums or hotel review sites.

First Advisor

Miyoung Jeong

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