Measuring quality regarding destination marketing: Perceptions from local public stakeholders in Portugal
Destination marketing is an essential tool for tourism development and competitiveness and has become a current issue in the context of quality. Motivated by a few studies and international recommendations on tourism quality, we aim to explore its marketing dimension. We developed a wide-ranging tourism quality scale, adapted to the Portuguese situation, which is supported by different subscales. This paper focuses on development and validation of the marketing subscale to measure the perceptions of local public stakeholders regarding marketing approaches to destination quality improvement. A self-administered survey was applied to a sample of Portuguese municipalities, specifically 134 local public stakeholders, commonly considered local DMOs (Destination Marketing Organizations) and public policy and decision-makers. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses were performed to measure quality regarding destination marketing and two factors were supported: (1) image and promotion; and (2) product differentiation. The instrument demonstrated validity and reliability, being a useful measuring tool. The empirical findings highlight the responsibility of local public stakeholders in destination marketing to ensure the quality and competitiveness of tourism, providing many useful insights for future research and practical and theoretical implications.
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