Doctor of Philosophy
A hybrid experience refers to an experience that is composed of two or more separable constituent experiences that are traditionally consumed independently of one another. A good example is an educational trip where sightseeing tours and educational engagements are combined in a single market offering for consumers. In this dissertation, I consider whether the structure of a hybrid experience impacts its evaluation. Through six experiments, I demonstrate that alternately structured hybrid experiences (e.g., partaking in both sightseeing tours and educational engagements within each day of a six-day trip) are more favourably evaluated than sequentially structured ones (e.g., completing all sightseeing tours and then engaging in educational engagements afterwards). This is because the benefits consumers infer from consuming an alternately structured hybrid experience may exceed the benefits inferred from a sequential structure. In addition, the positive effect of an alternating structure is greater for hybrids composed of less similar constituent experiences. Script theory, conversational implicature, variety seeking, service bundling, and schema congruity literatures are foundational to this investigation, and these results will add to the literature on experiential consumption and hybrid products by clarifying how consumers learn and evaluate this increasingly popular market offering. From a managerial perspective, the findings will improve understandings of how to design and market hybrid experiences.
Wang, Juan, "Designing A Hybrid Experience: The Effect of Experience Structure on Consumers' Evaluations" (2016). Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository. 3811.