Word of Mouth in Hospital Marketing: A Master Degree Thesis on WOM and Hospital Marketing (Paperback)
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This book is a master thesis. In most developed countries with open-market hospital systems marketing of hospital services has become more and more important. It has been shown that word-of-mouth-related factors such as 'hospital reputation' or 'recommendation' are important criteria for the consumer's decision, but so far the influence of word-of-mouth factors is not fully understood. In this work, Germany is taken as a model for a free-selection customer market, and the aim of this work was understand the importance of peer group opinion, doctor's referrals and media perception in hospital choice. A questionnaire was given tovolunteers and factors were analyzed by correlation coefficients. Interesting findings are the high correlation of hospital preference with factors concerning friends and family, and the absence of correlation to doctor's referrals and media information including the Internet. Possible mechanisms are discussed and an outlook is given on how hospital marketers could use this information in an ethical approach towards gaining positive word-of-mouth.