Examining Perceived and Projected Destination Image: A Social Media Content Analysis

Wei Sun, Shouliang Tang, Fang Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Destination image has been extensively studied in tourism and marketing, but the questions surrounding the discrepancy between the projected (perceptions from the National Tourism Organizations) and perceived destination image (perceptions from tourists) as well as how the discrepancy may influence sustainable experience remain unclear. Poor understanding of the discrepancy may cause tourist confusion and misuse of resources. The aim of this study is to empirically investigate if the perceived (by tourists) and projected (by NTOs) destination image are significantly different in both cognitive and affective aspects. Through a comprehensive social media content analysis of the
NTO-generated and tourist-generated-contents (TGC), the current study identifies numerous gaps between the projected and perceived destination image, which offers some important theoretical and practical implications on destination management and marketing.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3354
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2021


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