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Commercial hospitality consumption as a live marketing communication system

Gillespie, Cailein H. and Morrison, Alison J. (2001) Commercial hospitality consumption as a live marketing communication system. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 13 (4). pp. 183-188. ISSN 0959-6119

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Abstract

This paper presents a marketing perspective that may have considerable relevance within niche markets that are served by hotels positioned at the top end of the market, with distinctive lifestyle products. It considers the extent to which such products can be effectively positioned through semiotic marketing strategies. Emergent strategies are presented in a model of a live market communication system. It is proposed that this represents a reorientation in focus of positioning strategies from product and transaction, to cultural criteria and sensory differentiation. Justification is presented on the basis that while core hotel products and services and their functionality are easily duplicated, semiotics, aesthetics and their lifestyle associations are more difficult to mimic. The application of this reorientation is illustrated through the examples provided as an extraordinary collection of highly individual hotels. These products have been deliberately defined to align to conceptions of self-image, selling a set of symbolically defined features that are prototypical of a certain lifestyle.