Managing Service Relationships in a Global Economy: Exploring the Impact of National Culture on the Relevance of Customer Relational Benefits for Gaining Loyal Customers
Hennig-Thurau T, Gwinner K P, Gremler D D, Paul M
Customer relational benefits have been identified as a driving motivationfor consumers to engage in long term relationships with service providers.Such benefits can be expected to play a crucial role in the success of servicefirms when extending their business into other countries and cultures.Most of the previous discussion of relational benefits has been conductedalmost exclusively in North-American contexts and has not addressed theimpact a nation's culture may have on the relevance of relational benefitsfor gaining relationship outcomes such as customer loyalty. The aim ofthis article is to deepen our understanding of the role of relational benefitsin developing long-term relationships with consumers in a cross-culturalcontext. Specifically, propositions focusing on the moderating role of powerdistance, individualism/collectivism, masculinity/femininity, and uncertaintyavoidance for the benefits-outcomes relationship are developed. The articleconcludes with a discussion of potential implications for service firms andresearchers.