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Tourist familiarity and imagery

Prentice, R. (2004) Tourist familiarity and imagery. Annals of Tourism Research, 31 (4). pp. 923-945. ISSN 0160-7383

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The "tourist realities" or verisimilitudes of cultural tourists to the Edinburgh Old Town are analyzed using both their own voices and their responses to marketeers' images and descriptors. Specifically, the study tests the utility of familiarity in the modeling of image recognition and propensity to visit. It uses a typology of familiarity: informational, experiential, proximate, self-described, and educational. As a result of the analysis, an expansion of the typology is proposed to include two further types: self-assured and expected familiarity. Educational familiarity is further expanded into a multi-aspect concept. This septet of familiarity is proposed as a conceptual framework and methodology for characterizing "particle" markets for experience marketing.