Content Analysis of Hotel Customer Satisfaction

Authors: Madeleine Pullman, Kelly McGuire, Charles Cleveland (Cornell University School of Hotel Administration; Quester Linguistics)

Description: Customer surveys and comment cards are all well and good, but the best way to gain a full understanding of a customer’s feelings about a hotel is to analyze the context of the customer’s comments. Heretofore a laborious process, qualitative data analysis is rapidly becoming feasible for hoteliers, using software applications that support content analysis and data linking and those that offer advanced linguistic analysis. The content-analysis applications allow an analyst to assess the number of times a customer uses a particular word or phrase in written material or transcribed remarks. By counting the frequency of words and noting the association of certain words, one can categorize themes and concepts. By thus “quantifying” the qualitative communication, an analyst can associate the resulting information with demographic or other quantitative data. A more sophisticated analysis is possible with linguistic analysis, which examines the semantics, syntax, and context of customers’ verbal communications.

Full reference: Pullman, M. McGuire,K, Cleveland, C. (2005). Let Me Count the Words: Quantifying Open-Ended Interactions with Guests. Cornell Hotel and Restaurant Administration Quarterly. Vol. 46 (3), 323-343.