Cornell Restaurant Survey Tool Demonstrates Restaurants' Loyalty Power

Feb 11, 2009

Contact:  Glenn Withiam, 607.255.3025,

Cornell Restaurant Survey Tool Demonstrates Restaurants' Loyalty Power

Ithaca, NY, February 11, 2009 – Using a survey at a student-operated restaurant, a new case study from Cornell's Center for Hospitality Research demonstrates the value of surveying customers generally and the additional data analysis possible from electronic surveys. The research is explained in the latest of the Cornell Hospitality Tools series, “Measuring the Dining Experience: The Case of Vita Nova,” by Kesh Prasad and Fred DeMicco, who are faculty members at the University of Delaware. Although the survey software is proprietary, the survey description and applications are available at no charge from the center,

To demonstrate the uses of their proprietary electronic survey software, Prasad and DeMicco review the findings of a year-long survey at Vita Nova, which is the student-operated restaurant at the University of Delaware. Noting the 12-percent response rate to their survey, the authors suggest that electronic surveys should boost guest survey participation, as well as elicit helpful suggestions. The tool uses a series of screen captures to depict the restaurant's data analysis.

Guests at Vita Nova demonstrated unusual loyalty and satisfaction, probably because they were aware that students operate the restaurant. For any restaurant, the loyalty and satisfaction measures from the survey would allow managers to fine-tune operations and menus as necessary to ensure customer loyalty and to remedy any problems. The survey also tallies so-called loyalty behavior (including return visits and referrals) to gauge a restaurant's “loyalty power.”

The Cornell Hospitality Tools series provides the industry with research-based methods for improving specific areas of their operations. Previously issued tools have provided mechanisms to improve managers' communications and to educate employees on issues arising from cultural differences.

Thanks to the support of the Center for Hospitality Research partners listed below, all publications posted on the center's website are available free of charge, at

About The Center for Hospitality Research
A unit of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, The Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) sponsors research designed to improve practices in the hospitality industry. Under the lead of the center's 76 corporate affiliates, experienced scholars work closely with business executives to discover new insights into strategic, managerial and operating practices. The center also publishes the award-winning hospitality journal, the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly. To learn more about the center and its projects, visit
Center partners and sponsors: AIG Global Real Estate Investment, American Airlines Admirals Club, Davis & Gilbert LLP, Deloitte & Touche USA LLP, Denihan Hospitality Group, Expedia, Inc., Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Fox Rothschild LLP, FX Real Estate and Entertainment, Inc., General Growth Properties, Inc., HVS, InterContinental Hotels Group,, JohnsonDiversey, Inc., Jumeirah Group, LRP Publications, Marriott International, Inc., Marsh's Hospitality Practice, McDonald's USA, Mobil Travel Guide, Inc., Philips Hospitality, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Proskauer Rose LLP, Smith Travel Research, Southern Wine and Spirits of America, Inc., SynXis (a Sabre Holdings Corporation), Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, Thayer Lodging Group, TIG Global, Thompson Hotels, Travelport, WATG, and WhiteSand Consulting

Center friends: • American Tescor, LLC • Argyle Executive Forum • Caribbean Hotel and Restaurant Buyers Guide • Cody Kramer Imports • Cruise Industry News • DK Shifflet & Associates • • EyeforTravel • Fireman's Fund Insurance Company • Gerencia de Hoteles & Restaurantes • Global Hospitality Resources • Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) • • • Hospitality Technology Magazine • Hotel Asia Pacific • Hotel China • • Hotel Interactive • Hotel Resource • International CHRIE • International Hotel and Restaurant Association • International Hotel Conference • International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) • iPerceptions • Lodging Hospitality • Lodging Magazine • Milestone Internet Marketing • MindFolio • Parasol • PhoCusWright, Inc. • PKF Hospitality Research • The Resort Trades • RealShare Hotel Investment & Finance Summit • Resort+Recreation Magazine • • Shibata Publishing Co. • Synovate • The Lodging Conference • TravelCLICK • UniFocus • WageWatch, Inc. • WIWIH.COM