The Role of Customer Engagement in Building Consumer Loyalty to Tourism Brands
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Customer engagement has recently emerged in both academic literature and practitioner discussions as a brand loyalty predictor that may be superior to other traditional loyalty antecedents. However, empirical inquiry on customer engagement is relatively scarce. As tourism and hospitality firms have widely adopted customer engagement strategies for managing customer-brand relationships, further understanding of this concept is essential. Using structural equation modeling, this study investigates the linkages of customer engagement with traditional antecedents of brand loyalty. Results based on 496 hotel and airline customers suggest that customer engagement enhances customers' service brand evaluation, brand trust, and brand loyalty. The results show that service brand loyalty can be strengthened not only through the service consumption experience but also through customer engagement beyond the service encounter. This study contributes to the literature by providing an empirical evaluation of the relationships between customer engagement and key brand loyalty development factors.
Journal of Travel Research