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Title: Perceptions of the first time restaurant customer
Authors: Johns, N
Kivela, J
Keywords: Eating out
Issue Date: 2001
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Source: Food service technology, 2001, v. 1, no. 1, p. 5-11 How to cite?
Journal: Food service technology 
Abstract: Interviews with first time restaurant customers showed that all informants approached the new situation with great apprehension. They dealt with the resulting situational stress in different ways: by going in a group, or with a friend who had already been to the restaurant, by ascribing various feelings and motivations to other diners, by claiming ownership of specific features, and by editing out or ‘laughing off’ negative aspects of the experience. This study confirms and complements the findings of other studies, especially those concerned with customer expectations, perceived reliability and the interpersonal skills of service staff. Restaurant customers' perceptions may be explained in terms of territorial and group behaviour, as eating out occurs on another's territory, but at the same time a nonantagonistic social framework is required for the experience to be enjoyable. Implications for restaurant marketing are that customer groups should be targeted rather than individuals, greater reliance should be placed upon word of mouth and friends taking friends, and more consideration should be paid to the ‘messages’ emitted by restaurant exteriors, in order to render them less threatening.
ISSN: 1471-5740 (print)
1471-5732 (online)
DOI: 10.1046/j.1471-5740.2001.00001.x
Appears in Collections:Journal/Magazine Article

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