Aaltodoc publication archive (Aalto University institutional repository)
School of Business | Department of Marketing | Marketing | 2014
Thesis number: 14523
Social media as an idiosyncratic investment and enhancer of relationship quality and long-term orientation in buyer-supplier relationships
|Title:||Social media as an idiosyncratic investment and enhancer of relationship quality and long-term orientation in buyer-supplier relationships|
|Year:||2014 Language: eng|
|Department:||Department of Marketing|
|Index terms:||markkinointi; marketing; business-to-business; business-to-business; suhdemarkkinointi; relationship marketing; sosiaalinen media; social media|
» hse_ethesis_14523.pdf size:3 MB (3117630)
|Key terms:||business-to-business marketing, buyer-supplier relationship management, relationship quality, long-term orientation, social media, retail, structural equation model|
Motivation for the research and objectives The purpose of this Master' thesis is to explore the attitudes towards social media collaborations in buyer-supplier relationships (BSR) and to clarify how idiosyncratic investments in social media may enhance the relationship quality and long-term orientation within the dyad. It's suggested also in the literature that firms have to continue to rely on collaborative relationships in order to grow their pie of benefits (eg. Anderson & Jap, 2005). In this study, collaborative buyer-supplier relationships are seen as a creator of competitive advantage. The aim of this research is to contribute to the business marketing by providing new insights about the nature of buyer-supplier relationship and the possibilities of social media.
The research strategy and methodology In this study the linkages among of various buyer-supplier relationship-relevant constructs, relationship quality and long-term orientation are hypothesized and assessed. It's recognized that the constructs included in the conceptual model are only a portion of the potentially relevant variables that might have been included. However, the chosen constructs have both theoretical and empirical support and have shown their fit when examining the retail context and the collaborative approach.
Hence, trust (1), commitment (2), interdependence (3), communication (4), social media (5), long-term orientation (6) and relationship quality (7) are the constructs that are included in the proposed conceptual framework. The conceptual model is evaluated with confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and the proposed hypotheses are tested with structural equation modeling (SEM). The sample of the study consisted of 151 suppliers from the action sport and lifestyle brand industry. Suppliers were responding based on the relationship between one retailer buyer.
Results All in all, 4 out of 6 hypotheses were supported. The results indicate that commitment and communication have a positive relation to willingness to make idiosyncratic investments in social media. Furthermore, willingness to collaborate also reflects to higher relationship quality and long-term orientation. The relationship between trust and interdependence towards willingness to make idiosyncratic investments in social media weren't statistically significant, hence their importance in social media context cannot be determined based on this study.
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