Designing an appropriate brand image and customer gaming experience in Macau: Challenges and opportunities
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Merrill Lynch (2005) predicts that gross gaming revenue in Macau will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 15.4% through 2009. Despite this euphoric projection, the trend toward mass market tourists coupled with the massive capacity expansion will mean that revenue per table will decline and gaming position capacity utilization will fall from current levels. Operators desirous of maintaining their market share or creating a niche of loyal customers will be able to do so only through sound marketing practises. To that aim, this paper explores two relevant marketing issues: 1) measuring and projecting a brand's image, and 2) elucidating five factors that affect the customer experience. Given the nascent state of Macau's gaming facilities-integrated resort complexes are just now coming on-line - brand images are in flux. In reference to the customers experience, the factors discussed are: (1) customer characteristics and motivations; (2) other customers; (3) servicescape; (4) invisible organization and systems, and (5) service providers. Managerial implications of these factors for Macau's casino operators are provided. With the Macau gaming industry getting progressively more competitive, brand image and customer experience will be significant determinants of customer loyalty and casino profitability.
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