MODERATING EFFECT OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY UTILIZATION ON THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN COMMUNICATION AND CUSTOMER SATISFACTION

Abstract

Relationship marketing has been identified as an effective strategy to attract, maintain and enhance customer relationships. Hospitality industry by extension supports and enhances tourism sector and has grown, evolved and developed over the years globally, regionally and in Kenya thus making meaningful contribution to economy in terms of employment, revenue and profit. Classified star hotels provide services such as reservation, telecommunication, front office, restaurant and accommodation for customers or guests. Communication as relationship marketing practice is therefore important in service industry. Despite the importance of communication in the hospitality industry, there are few empirical studies that have tested the underlying assumptions on classified star hotels which much of the relationship marketing research is based on. The aim of this study was to determine the moderating effect of information technology communication (ICT) utilization on the relationship between communication and customer satisfaction by classified hotels. Descriptive research design was adopted for this study. The target population was 6067 customers at classified star hotels in Nairobi Kenya and a sample size of 375 was obtained using proportionate sampling from five categorized star hotels. Data was collected using a 5 Likert-scale questionnaire. Data was analyzed using multiple regression analysis. The study revealed that communication (β= .011, p-value = 0.908) as a relationship marketing practice did not have a statistically significant effect on customer satisfaction. Thus, the study failed to reject H01 since p-value was greater than α. The moderating effect of Information Technology Utilization explains 7.8% variance in customer satisfaction above and beyond the variance by communication scores. H02 was rejected since β≠0 and p-value was less than α. This study concluded that communication strategy has no significant effect on customer satisfaction. The study concluded that ICT utilization moderated the relationship between relationship marketing practices and customer satisfaction. It is therefore recommended that managers of classified star hotels should understand the implications of prioritizing elements based on their effect on customer satisfaction.

Keywords: Classified Star Hotel, Customer Satisfaction, Information Technology Utilization, Relationship Marketing, communication


Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 73-82 (Download PDF)

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