View the best paper from each track below.
BUSINESS TO BUSINESS
Unused Solutions in Business Markets
Laura Elgeti, Michael Kleinaltenkamp
Session Time: Wednesday 1 December, 3:30pm - 4:30pm
In business markets, customer solutions are sometimes bought or ordered but only used gradually or even not at all. As such unused solutions typically require high customer as well as provider investments of money, time and other resources, which ‘fizzle out’ somehow after their full or partial implementation, they may result in financial losses, negative effects on the respective customer-supplier relationships, and further reputational damages. However, in spite of the sometimes enormous investments that are at stake and the possibly very negative effects of unused solutions, they have not been investigated from a marketing perspective. This paper thus conceptualizes unused solutions in business markets and, based on a qualitative study with 25 interviewees representing solution customer and supplier firms, identifies the drivers of their emergence and the forms they may take. Moreover, based on these findings, measures are shown that providers can take to avoid or reactivate unused solutions.
Moral Peacocking: Exploring Social Media Outrage
Jeff D. Rotman, Virginia Weber, Andrew W. Perkins, Americus Reed II
Session Time: Wednesday 1 December, 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Consumer responses to social and moral transgressions are ubiquitous on social media. However, little is known about what motivates these responses, under which conditions they occur, and the downstream consequences of these behaviors. In the current research, we introduce the concept of moral peacocking: the act of condemning perceived offensive behavior via public expression of one’s outrage. Across six studies and a variety of social issues we find that moral peacocking results from personal outrage and is amplified by the desire and ability to signal this outrage to one’s ingroup (study 1a – 1c). We further demonstrate that moral peacocking predicts offline consumption behavior (study 2). Finally, we provide evidence that moral peacocking can result in counter-peacocking. Specifically, we find that witnessing a dissociative reference group engage in moral peacocking motivates consumers with opposing views to support the condemned brand through greater willingness to buy (study 3 and 4)
CONSUMER CULTURE THEORY
Finding Space for Black Joy in Live Music During COVID-19
Natalie Mitchell, Kevin Thomas, Toni Eagar, Yingnan Shi
Session Time: Wednesday 1 December, 10:30am - 12:00pm
The denied humanity Black people endure daily is often conceptualized as all-consuming. In this study, we examine how the Verzuz, a livestreaming “rap battle” music event offers a virtual space wherein Black joy coexists with pain. Black joy is conceptualised as offering a space where the imagination can be stretched to include a life without White supremacy to enable resistance and self-care. Adopting a theoretical framework of spatial topologies, we explore how space for Black joy manifests in multiple socially constructed and interconnected levels. This study uses a netnographic approach with data collected from Verzuz battles, social media, the media and planned primary interviews with fans and organisers. Our findings suggest that spaces for joy to emerge requires an ontological shift when considering the lived Black experience.
Source Effects in Influencer Endorsement: A Meta-analysis
Petra Paasonen, Heini Vanninen
Session Time: Tuesday 30 November, 3:30pm - 5:00pm
While the endorsement research in the field of marketing has to a large extent concentrated on the effectiveness of celebrity endorsers, social media influencers have started attracting more attention amongst both academics and practitioners leading to an increasing number of studies published during the past decade. This study investigated the importance of source credibility, source attractiveness and influencer-brand/product congruence in influencer endorsements by meta-analyzing 21 studies published until November 2019 involving 8,457 participants. The findings reveal that the studied influencer source effects are positively associated with endorsement outcomes. More specifically, source credibility composed of influencer trustworthiness and influencer expertise has the most positive effect for both attitudes and behavioral intentions. The findings can aid practitioners in choosing the right influencer to endorse their products in social media. Since significant heterogeneity was detected in the data, a follow-up moderator analysis is warranted to explain the sources of variance in individual studies.
ENTREPRENEURSHIP & INNOVATION
Do Rational Entrepreneurs Exit Rationally?
Nidthida Lin, Elahe Ghasrodashti, Ralf Wilden, Francesco Chirico, Dawn R. DeTienne
Session Time: Monday 29 November, 11:00am - 12:30pm
While theory suggests that highly rational entrepreneurs and with high need for cognitive closure (NFCC) are likely to put stronger emphasis on retrospective performance and personal factors when deciding whether to persist with an underperforming venture, our findings from a discrete choice experiment with 177 entrepreneurs show mixed evidence, thereby challenging existing research. Overall, we find that entrepreneurs who perceive themselves as rational do not always demonstrate rational behavior in persistence decisions and entrepreneurs with high NFCC pay significantly more attention to retrospective performance, but not to prospective performance and personal options.
ETHICS & SUSTAINABILITY
Corporate Lies Can Contaminate Individual Morality
Nils Christian Hoffmann
Session Time: Monday 29 November, 1:30pm - 3:00pm
The present paper analyzes how consumers react to corporate wrongdoings and how the unethical behavior of companies might even motivate consumers to relax their own moral standards and engage in unethical behavior themselves. Specifically, we analyze how corporate lies influence the morality of individuals that get to know about these behaviors. Across two pre-tests and two experimental studies that manipulate the behavior of different brands, we show that consumers emotionally react (i.e., they are disappointed and feel contempt) to corporate wrongdoings and, most importantly, even alter their own moral standards and engage in unethical behavior themselves if they have a high-self brand match with the brand that acts unethically.
INTERNATIONAL MARKETING & STRATEGY
A comparison of the feedback effect of brand extension and co-branding strategies
Rico Piehler, Michael Schade, Marius Diegel, Christoph Burmann
Session Time: Tuesday 30 November, 1:30pm - 3:00pm
This paper investigates if a brand extension or co-branding strategy is more effective for brands extending their business into unrelated product categories. The study examines the feedback effect on the brand for current and potential customers with high and low involvement in the new category. Based on signalling, categorisation and schema theory, this study assumes that a co-branding strategy is more suitable regarding the feedback effect on the brand than a brand extension strategy. The context of the investigation is the sports industry, particularly professional football clubs entering the esports domain to acquire new target groups. An online experiment with 1,482 potential and current fans of two German Football League clubs reveals that the co-branding strategy affects the sports club brand image more than the brand extension strategy. The results show that the co-branding strategy positively affects potential customers without alienating the brand’s current customers.
JUDGEMENT & DECISION MAKING
The Effects of Lower Price Restraints on Consumer Choice
Eunha Han, Prof. Harmen Oppewal, Dr. Luke Greenacre, Assoc. Prof. Eugene Chan
Session Time: Tuesday 30 November, 1:30pm - 3:00pm
Lower price restraints are floor prices that consumers are willing to pay for a product in order to not end up being disappointed about the product quality. The current research investigates the downstream consequences of applying a lower price restraint on consumer choice and its psychological mechanism. Across five studies, it is found that lower price restraints increase the choice share of the cheapest alternative above the restraint. It is proposed that thinking of a lower price restraint shifts the consumer’s attention from quality to cost through a categorisation process, leading to an increased preference for the alternative above the restraint that is superior in cost. While previous research on price restraints has mostly focused on upper price restraints in which consumers consider the most amount to pay for an alternative, this research provides a novel understanding of lower price restraints.
Dissecting The Digits: Patterns In Post-Testing Measurement
Emily Gray, Cr. Nicole Hartnett, Prof. Rachel Kennedy, Dr. Zachary Anesbury
Session Time: Monday 29 November, 11:00am - 12:30pm
Post-test survey measures, such as ad recognition and likeability, are widely used by brands to assess advertising performance. Yet there is a lack of research explaining the variation within and across post-test survey measures as well as the relationships between these measures. Our pilot study systematically documents the variation in performance of 118 Australian chocolate television campaigns across 13 measures. Results show that there is more variation in memory measures (e.g., brand linkage) than evaluation measures. In contrast to earlier findings (Greene, 1992), this study also finds a strong correlation between specific evaluation measures (i.e., likeability, entertaining). suggesting brands may opt to only include one of the two measures. The research provides brands with clear expectations on post-testing surveys results, which help in interpreting results.
Students’ Intentions to Work in B2B Sales
Titta Pitman, Jonna Koponen, Anssi Tarkiainen
Session Time: Wednesday 1 December, 3:00pm - 4:30pm
The profession of business-to-business (B2B) sales has undergone major changes in this millennium and become more complex. While prior research shows that students’ perception of sales has improved during the seven decades it has been investigated, students are still unwilling to work in sales. The purpose of this study is to measure business students’ (N =84) attitudes and intentions toward working in B2B sales. The data were collected via an online survey in a business school. We found that even if the business students’ attitudes toward B2B sales are somewhat positive, their intentions to apply for a B2B sales job position are low, and they are not very motivated to work in B2B sales. The results also indicate that increasing the students’ sense of competence regarding B2B sales tasks can improve their motivation to work in B2B sales.
Social Networks and Service Employee Innovativeness
Ozlem Ozkok, Simon J. Bell, Kwanghui Lim, Jagdip Singh
Session Time: Monday 29 November, 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Frontline interactions of service employees have been identified as crucial for service innovation and firm growth. However, several organisations struggle to continuously innovate from the frontlines. Our study brings a social network lens to the service employee innovativeness framework and identifies two relevant networks that can enhance service innovativeness: 1) knowledge exchange (KE) 2) self-governance (SG) networks. We theorise
and show that the role diversity in SG networks positively moderate the effects of role diversity in KE networks. We contribute to service marketing literature by demonstrating joint actions of service employees that facilitate knowledge flows for new service ideas and mutual negotiation of service tasks and resources for executing service work are essential for sustainable service innovativeness. A key practical implication of this study is that organisations that encourage connecting service employees broadly can enact frontline knowledge for novel service solutions and sustain their competitive advantage.
Re-imagining issue framing: The Women's Butterfly Project
Rebekah Russell-Bennett, Melissa Bull, Nick Kelly, Kate Letheren, Joy Parkinson, Jinglan Zhang
Wednesday 1 December, 10:30am - 12:00pm
While social marketers typically research and practice on topics such as homelessness, obesity and domestic violence, the negative framing of these social issues can undermine and restrict the solutions that can be designed. There is significant evidence to demonstrate that a strengths-based rather deficit approach to social issue framing is more effective; however, there is little guidance on how to move from negative framing of a social issue (deficit-approach) to positive framing of a social issue (strengths-based). Using service design and reflexivity, this research involved a cross-discipline team of 15 researchers, 15 expert-proxies and women of lived experience, 11 early responders and 13 user-testers to co-design a digital portal prototype to prevent homelessness for mature women. The findings identified four project features that require focus for a strengths-based approach. This research also developed a checklist for reframing a social issue as positive using a strength-based approach.
TRANSFORMATIVE CONSUMER RESEARCH & PUBLIC POLICY
Older Consumer Stereotypes and Technology: A Review
Session Time: Tuesday 30 November, 11:00am - 12:30pm
Adopting and consuming tech-products is considered important for older consumer wellbeing. Extant studies examine what shapes older consumers’ acceptances and resistances of technologies. However, studies risk reifying age-related stereotypes when often featuring older consumers as fearful of tech-products and having declining physical/cognitive capabilities. While stereotypes may hold a ‘kernel-of-truth’ and underpin well-intentioned research, this systemic literature review paper critically reflects on how age-related stereotypes may be sensitising research efforts in technology consumption scholarship in marketing. A 2x3 theoretical framework is developed that categorises extant literature based on the presence of age-related stereotypes (negative/non-negative) and portrayed orientations to technology (resisting/discerning/seeking) in findings and theory sections. The resulting six categories turn these considerations into ‘productive tensions’ for researchers, marketers, and policymakers to work with by mapping out future research directions and practical implications. These include under-researched perspectives of older consumers as active tech-seekers, and equally, non-adopters with non-technophobic reasons to resist adoption.