III. SUMMARY (100-200 words)Web 2.0 is an improved technology on websites from earlier versions to aid in bettering the interaction between customers and the management of certain organizations or businesses. The ever dynamic business environment in the tourism industry forced the Greek tourism industry to evaluate the use of Web 2.0 as a new service delivery tool. However, the use of customer opinion in shaping up new service delivery comes with its share of risks. It was agreed that the involvement may be broken into segments so that a section of customers were engaged in certain aspects of the web 2.0 while others took time to use the remaining.
As a result, it was found that specific factors are considered in the application of web 2.0: the Greek tourism industry is rather more dependent on domestic small business enterprises than multinationals with chains. To add to that, most of them use content generated from users after production processes to decide on service delivery than use web 2.0 to solicit customer reaction to a product before creating it. The analysis brought out a hitherto unknown perspective – the Greek tourism industry would experiences certain challenges in trying to influence its customer market segment using web 2.0 as a means to new service delivery.
IV. KEY LEARNING POINTSIntroduction of new products into markets needs more than a hasty process of surprising customers with a formerly unknown perspective. For instance, while a company whose product has been doing well in the market may provide a strong possibility for a new one to succeed, others may fall flat if customer needs are not looked at.
A look at Web 2.0 as a radical process reveals a shift of focus from manufacturing active paradigm to a customer active one. User-generated content enables a business to address the needs of its customers to their satisfaction. One the other hand, when a manufacturer uses the initial manufacturing processes to decide customer’s needs, more often than not their satisfaction is not met to the levels with which the former way does. In the case of introducing web 2.0 to the Greek tourism industry, however, a few points need to be noted: market characteristics of the Greek tourism industry limits the extent to which components of web 2.0 may be used.
For instance, company websites fair better than tools like social networks. A breakdown of the report on usage of web 2.0 in Greek tourism industry indicates a heavy use by accommodation suppliers and tour operators. This shows that more bookings for accommodations and transport are done via the internet than other uses like catering. V. RELEVANT STATEMENTS TO THE SESSIONA management team needs to focus more on customer needs.
The best ways through which this can be done is via use of new service delivery. Means through which service delivery is done matters so much so that more often than not, it decides the market reaction to a product that is new. While a new service delivery method may encounter problems, innovative ways of doing so would increase chances of the new product penetrating the market with better reception. Web 2.0 is an innovative way of soliciting customer opinion. As compared to the former method used to engage customers in the Greek tourism industry, web 2.0 as a method of new service delivery works better as it is a more radical concept.
Formerly, customer opinion was only sought on an already developed product. Web 2.0 not only includes already introduced products, but also seeks to obtain customer opinion on developing ones. Further, the architectural innovation in web 2.0 allows for several approaches in doing this. Social networking sites alongside company websites are just a few examples of tools that are put to use in web 2.0. However, its use is a very tricky affair considering the market segmentation in the Greek tourism industry, which displays a pattern that is not conventional in the sense of the world tourism market.