USER GENERATED CONTENT IN THE ASSESSMENT OF THE PERCEPTION OF THE TOURISM ENTITY IMAGE
Keywords:user generated content, agri-tourism farms image, Białowieża National Park, Narew National Park
AbstractThe paper presents the results of analyses concerning the possible use of User Generated Content (UGC) to assess the perception of the image of tourism entities, acting in the travel destinations with high tourist potential. The scientific method applied in the study was the internet survey comprising the quantitative and qualitative content analysis. The quantitative content analysis was focused on the number of a comments and metatags and on assigning them to the suiting factorial parameters. The qualitative content analysis was focused on the essence of the analysed metatags and comments in the context of image shaping factors presented by Baloglu and McCleary (1999). Based on the selected parameters of the model proposed by Baloglu and McCleary, and in order to create a matrix of the distinguishing features of the image used in the promotion, the elements of the website content of agri-tourism farms located in the Białowieża (BNP) and Narew (NNP) national parks were analysed. It was assumed that the chosen content of web sites (metatags) was a direct expression of the manner of perception of the travel destination image by the persons engaged in tourism activities there. For the purpose of the analysis of these entities image perception by tourists, a separate matrix, based on the examination of their opinions, left behind at online tourist offers comparison sites, has been created. The resulting matrices were compiled and the main distinguishing features of the image were indicated from the perspective of both groups. According to the owners of tourist farms from the BNP area the main distinguishing feature of the image of this area are natural values; though the distinguishing features regarding the quality of products and tourism services are slightly less important. Similar conclusions can be drawn based on the data obtained by analysing the opinions of tourists. On the other hand, for the NNP, the dominant role of features related to the quality of products and tourism services was confirmed. It was found that the analysis of the UGC may constitute an important factor allowing for tracing the dynamics of changes in image perception by tourists, which enables for efficient creation of the image of the entity.