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It is increasingly important for organizations in the hospitality industry to utilize qualitative, customer-generated content on social media to gain insight into guest perceptions, intentions, and outcomes. On the basis of the service quality model, this research sought to investigate the discrepancy between expected and perceived service. Guest reviews from online review websites like Yelp and TripAdvisor were randomly sampled for 16 hotels across the United States of America. For each hotel, 20 written comments and their corresponding numeric ratings were coded and analyzed using Tropes. We found linkages to both average and positive experiences for staff and linkages to average, positive, and negative experiences for service. Guest experience was linked to staff and service, as well as room, location, meal, and time. Critiques of service, rooms, cleanliness and restaurants were strongly related to staff. Directions for future research, including the utility of crowd-sourced word dictionaries to aid hospitality research are discussed.

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Originally published in the Journal of Management and Innovation, 3(2). Licensed under CC BY 3.0. The original material can be found here.