Hospitality organizations understands that their success depends on their customer’s satisfaction and created experiences. Consequently, hotels try to create unique and memorable experiences for customers to please them. There are two techniques that hotels could implement to meet their guest’s expectations: Co-production and co-creation. These strategies will be analyzed and compared further.
Co-production is a strategy that emphasizes a firm centric view regarding customer involvement during the service production. It is an exchange of service between customers and organizations build on a platform of production and consumption. It basically means that using this strategy customers have a passive role in a service production. For instance, customers can assist hotel via self- service by completing check in/out forms or by giving their feedback on the service. Even though, customers do have a chance to state their opinion they are not involve in the process of service and experiences creation. (Chathoth, 2013)
Contrariwise, co-creation is used to emphasize service dominant logic, which means that customers are actively involved in all the stages of service creation process. The main focus is joint effort and collaboration between the producer and consumer with a goal to learn from consumers (Chathoth, 2013). Co-creation strategy has many advantages, such as costs reduction and saving time. Moreover, it also has a social advantage, because customers that participates in service creation are usually from different backgrounds. The success of co-creation depends on several factors. It can be distinguished by the DART model (dialogue, access, risk, transparency). It is highly important to have a dialogue with costumers and to find their hidden needs. Furthermore, it is essential to be open and accessible for customers, to know the risks and show your customers that their input matters, so they would not lose the interest (Beltman, 2013).
Consequently, co-creation strategy is proven to be more successful in a hotel industry. It is mostly because due to co-creation strategy hotels are able to gain knowledge of customer personal needs and use it to create value in use. For instance, Qbic Design hotels offers rooms with futuristic style with a possibility to change the color of the walls based on the customer mood. Moreover, customers can be involved in a creation process by creating co-design. For example, Starwood hotels launched their virtual product “Virtual Aloft” which allows guests to visit and create their own rooms design in a virtual world. It gives guest a feeling that they are a part of the creation, meanwhile hotels get insight about their customer’s desires and can use this information for designing rooms or other facilities in a hotel.
To sum it up, both strategies can be used by hotels, but co-creation can be more beneficial. It reduces costs, saves time, builds long-lasting relationship with customers and hotels can gain a beneficial advantage knowing customer preferences and use them to improve their products and services.
Ed Peelen, Rob Beltman. (2013). Customer relationship management. Amsterdam: Pearson education Benelux BV.
Chathoth, P. (2013). Co-production versus co-creation: A process based continuum in the hoteel service context. International journal of hospitality management, 11-20.