The Effects of Likability of Korean Celebrities, Dramas, and Music on preferences for Korean Restaurants: A Mediating Effect of a Country Image of Korea
International Journal of Hospitality Management, Forthcoming
13 Pages Posted: 2 Aug 2014
Date Written: July 31, 2014
With the globalization of Korean cuisine and wide acceptance of Korean contemporary culture (popular culture, sometimes “pop” culture), this study pursues an investigation of the influences of Korean popular culture on preferences for Korean restaurants through a country image of Korea. In addition, the study compares the relative influences of three major segments of Korean popular culture (Korean celebrities,Korean television dramas, and Korean popular music) on an image of Korea. A survey of 2836 residents in four international cities (Hong Kong, Bangkok, Sydney, and Dubai) shows that likability of Korean celebrities had the most significant influence on a country image of Korea, followed by Korean television dramas, but likability of Korean popular music did not affect Korea’s image. The findings show that a country image of Korea positively influenced preferences for Korean restaurants, and reveal regional differences in the effects of Korean popular culture on preferences for Korean restaurants among the four cities. This study is unique in both academia and industry for its investigation of the influence of Korean popular culture by classifying Korean popular culture into different major segments of Korean popular culture, Korean celebrities, Korean television dramas, and Korean popular music. This study is beneficial to restaurant operators and governments by providing the information for developing strategies for expanding ethnic restaurants into global markets and formulating governmental and industrial policies for globalization of ethnic food and restaurant industries.
Keywords: Korean popular culture, A country image, Korean restaurants, Likability, Preference, Globalization
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