Henry Harteveldt [Posted by Henry Harteveldt]

Hello again.

I'm wrapping up my report on why travelers post their ratings and reviews. This was the winning topic that we asked our eBusiness blog readers to vote on. Thanks again to those of you who voted.

The good news is that travelers are more likely to post content like ratings, reviews, and pictures on travel Web sites to share good news with their fellow travelers, rather than bad news. I hope that's because more travelers interact with travel firms that exceed their expectations, rather than travelers having low expectations and simply pleased that nothing went wrong. The reality is likely a mix of both.

If you're a travel eBusiness or marketing professional, I'd sincerely value your opinions about user generated content (UGC) — primarily ratings and reviews — for one simple reason. I want to be sure that we write the most useful possible report. Among the questions we'd appreciate your input on are:

  • What does your organization do to mine the massive amount of user generated content (UGC) about your brand, destination, or sector of the industry? Do you feel the investment of time and money is worth it? Why?
  • If you don't allow UGC on your Web sites, why is that? Budget, technology — the fear of someone saying something negative?
  • Are you using UGC as part of your customer service or product/training improvement programs? How? What benefits have you seen?
  • Is ROI a factor in your decision making? Why or why not?
  • What potential benefits from UGC do see as being more, or less, useful to your organization and its objectives, and why?

I'd enjoy learning your thoughts. They'll help make the recommendations we offer that much more relevant to you.

As always, thanks for your time.