Consumer behavior in marketing is a systematic approach, which is followed by the customers, while entering in any purchasing decision. This report will choose a particular research article on the topic of marketing consume behavior. The summary of the article and its theoretical foundation will be described in this report. Apart from that, the nature of research including sample size and findings of the article will be evaluated in this report. The report will also highlight the new findings and practitioners’ learning scope of the article.
Summary of the Article
Over the last decades, the association between customer satisfaction and customer loyalty has been the most important and discussed subject in several articles related to marketing literature. It was usually believed that high level of customer satisfaction ultimately leads to high level of repurchasing intension. However, the evidences of this article have challenged this marketing concept and indicated that it is not universally the case. Moreover, the article has pointed out two types of deviations from the traditional customer satisfaction and repurchasing relationship.
The evidences have explored that some customers want to leave the business relationship despite of having high level of customer satisfaction. The factors affecting such behavior are known as Escape Assistants. On the other hand, the article has also investigated the intension of customers, where despite of having high level of customer dissatisfaction, some customers want to stay in business or repurchase the products and services (Pollack 2014). The factors affecting such behavior are known as Captured Assistants. The research article has also highlighted the affects of moderates on the deviating customer behavior. Moreover, it has been investigated that high switching cost encourages the customers to stay despite of their high dissatisfaction level. On the other hand, increasing alternative products and services lead the customers to leave the business despite of having high level of satisfaction to gain more profit (Pollack 2014). The present research article has taken initiatives to add to the existing marketing research streams by raising a voice over customers and inquiring their motives to leave and stay in business relationship having opposite behavior and customer satisfaction level.
The Theoretical Foundations
The article has highlighted the theories and concepts of customer satisfaction, customer loyalty and customer repurchasing intension. As per classic linear relationship of customer satisfaction, high level of customer satisfaction is the antecedents of repeated purchasing intension of the customers. However, this universality of customer purchasing intension has been challenged over the past few decades. Pollack (2014) investigated the concepts of moderator, which is a third variable and the existence of this moderate modifies the casual and general link between customer satisfaction and customer loyalty. Moreover, the managerial implication about customer segments and moderators supports the reality of deviation in customer purchasing intension.
The theory of moderators based on satisfaction-loyalty relationship has been organized into relational moderator, marketplace moderator and customer moderator. Such factors deviate the usual cause-effect relationship of consumer behavior. As per Pollack (2014) the mercenaries, having high satisfaction yet low loyalty are influenced by Escape factors. Moreover, their purchasing intensions are mostly motivated by fashion purchase, commoditization, low price, availability of many substitutes and change seeking purchasing behavior. On the other hand, hostages, having low satisfaction yet high loyalty are influenced by capture factors. Their purchasing intensions are mostly motivated by loyalty programs, brand dominance, high switching cost and proprietary technology.
Nature of the Research
The critical incident technique was used in this research for collecting data and reaching at the motivators for leaving having satisfied and staying having dissatisfied. It was a qualitative approach of primary data collection method for classifying the observations of human behavior. The qualitative investigation technique was used to elicit case example for Capture Assistants and Escape Assistants (Pollack 2014). Moreover, the respondents were asked to present one or more examples related to their deviating customer purchasing intension. The content collected from the respondents was analyzed through thematic analysis. Apart from that, the collected data was also analyzed through independent coder.
Sample Size Considerations
The research has adopted non-probability sampling based on subjective judgment. Moreover, an equal gender composition and broad age range have been selected in this research. 100 participants were selected for this research having differing customer purchasing intension.
Key Findings from the Research
As per the findings of the research article, the most prominent categories of moderators affecting the consumer behavior are availability of equally satisfying opportunities and undifferentiated products. The perception of commoditized products also encourages the customers to leave despite of having high level of satisfaction. 31.4% cases of Escape Assistants consider that they can get equal value from the competing products and service offerings. They perceive that such shift will result in new experience, which will be at least satisfactory like their present purchase. 18.6% respondents in Escape Assistants want switch for having better price elsewhere. Furthermore, 12.8% respondents want to escape from their present purchase for fulfilling their next need with different brands and products. A majority of customers in Escape Assistants are not likely to repurchase a particular brand, as they are already loyal to some other brand.
In case of capture assistants, 48.7% incidents are showing that some customers do not want to switch because of high switching cost. Such incidents are mostly reflected in cell phone or telecommunication sectors. Furthermore, 15.4% Capture Assistants has highlighted monopoly market condition as the reason for their stay despite of having low satisfaction level. Some customer segments have highlighted that they can simply repurchase a dissatisfactory product and services just because of low prices. Some customers stay in a dissatisfactory relationship, as they get some form of financial rewards such gift cards or loyalty programs.
‘New’ Findings that Advance Knowledge
The findings of this article are completely new and innovative in the field of marketing literature. Moreover, such findings have actually challenged the traditional customer satisfaction and loyalty relationship of the customers. Moreover, the concepts of this article have explored that despite of having high level of satisfaction, some customers are inclined to leave the business. On the other hand, despite of having low level of satisfaction, some customers are inclined to repurchase the present products and services. Moreover, the article has invented a new concept of moderators as third factors, which alter the functional relationship between the customer satisfaction and customer loyalty.
The satisfied customers are often inclined to switch because of many substitute products, high brand image and innovative products. On the other hand, some customers, despite of being dissatisfied, are willing to repurchase a particular product and service just because of low prices, loyalty programs and monopoly markets. Such new findings will definitely advance the knowledge of marketing managers. Moreover, the manager can be aware that investment in customer satisfaction can be reduced through investment by erecting barriers.
Personal Opinion on the Findings
The findings from that article have highlighted certain critical points, which were never known to me earlier. I always believed that high level of customer satisfaction always leads to repeated purchasing intension and loyalty of the customers. It is quite surprising to me that some customers are inclined to leave the business despite of having high level of satisfaction. I am also surprised that some customers are inclined to repurchase products and services despite of having dissatisfaction. I understood that it is the responsibility of the marketers to focus on market competition and build strategy to retain or regain consumer loyalty. For those products, whose amount of supply is almost equal to that of demand, are facing the toughest competition and the availability of substitute items is creating more sustainability challenges.
From the findings of this article, I am completely surprised because even though companies are providing products that meet consumer demand still they are not being retained for longer period. I am amazed to know the facts that innovation strategies are taken by marketers to attract and persuade target audience from potential buyers to consumers. According to me, service quality, branding strategies, value-oriented pricing and product diversification are the major components that might help marketers to retain consumers for long. Moreover, continuous investment in innovation will help in retaining consumers because they will get the hope of getting better products or service in future.
What Practitioners Can Learn and Apply
The findings from the article highlighted that the customers are more inclined to stay in business despite of having dissatisfaction because of their fear of loss and high switching cost. Moreover, it is also evident that customers are highly inclined to leave a business relationship with an expectation of gaining more profit. It has been also understood that marketers must not always focus on product but at the same time, they must develop or innovate ways of providing services. It can lead the satisfied customers to stay in business for longer period of time.
While considering the perspective of a marketing manager, it can be said that setting contract for such products, which are higher in prices, will make consumers to stay longer. However, the products, which are provided at reasonable prices, need not to be under any contract, otherwise it will hinder erection of switching barriers. On the other hand, managers need to think ways through which the potential gain of consumers can be increased. Therefore, managerial awareness should always be placed on dealing with the potential profit of leaving. Moreover, the managers should combat the product and service gains, increase product differentiation, focus on innovation and offer varieties of products and services for retaining customers for longer period of time.
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