Value Co-creation through Social Media Platforms in Hotel Industry: Constructivist Grounded Theory

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
This research is carried out to explore the opportunities for value co-creation and value capture provided by social media, as well as their applicability to strategy development purposes in the context of the hotel industry. For this purpose, a critical review of academic literature is conducted to understand the past research and use the theoretical frameworks of service-dominant logic, absorptive capacity theory, value co-creation, and the use of social media to develop a conceptual framework. The study is aimed at the hotel industry which provides a clear focus to the study and the performed analysis, allowing theory development. The study uses constructivist ground theory methodology to explore value co-creation in the context of the hotel industry. Primary data is collected through semi-structured interviews with 24 experts from six luxury hotels in the UAE. The primary data is analyzed through three-stage coding represented by initial line-by-line, focused, and theoretical coding employed in the data analysis process, in line with the postulates of the Constructivist Grounded Theory paradigm. The secondary research is based on qualitative content analysis of secondary data, represented by 960 social media posts from 12 social media accounts of six luxury hotels in the UAE, characterized by extensive social media activity. The findings of the study present evidence of the influence of social media platforms on value co-creation by combining the SDL and ACT perspective. Furthermore, this research has also acknowledged the importance of social media activities and how it has challenged conventional organizations to react to a co-creation experience. The findings of the study also emphasize the interaction of the 3 components - social media platforms, customer engagement and organizational strategy - through the absorptive capacity theory dimensions can only lead to effective value co-creation in the context of service-dominant logic. The findings of the study have both theoretical as well as managerial implications which are discussed. In the hotel industry, the findings of the study present a strong case for use of social media platforms and for value co-creation in hotel industry.
social media, value co-creation, service dominant logic, absorptive capacity theory, customer engagement, organizational strategy, United Arab Emirates (UAE)