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Contracts versus relationship intention as indicator of customer trust in and commitment to cell phone service providers: An exploratory study

Derik Steyn orcid id ; University of Oklahoma, Michael F. Price College of Business, Division of Marketing and Supply Chain Management, USA
Pierre Mostert orcid id ; University of Pretoria, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, Department of Marketing Management

Puni tekst: engleski pdf 727 Kb

str. 167-190

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Social exchange theory postulates long-term customer-company relationships are built on trust and commitment. Cell phone service providers seek to secure the trust and commitment of their customers through service contracts. Relationship intention (RI) is a more precise measure of customer trust and commitment. This paper compares the trust of cell phone service customers and their commitment to cell phone service providers based on customers’ contract status and RI classification. Data from 1,473 cell phone customers from South Africa (n = 589) and the Philippines (n = 884) were analyzed. The study shows for both the South African and Philippine samples that there is no relationship between respondents’ contract status and their trust in or commitment to cell phone service providers and that trust in or commitment to cell phone service providers is significantly higher among high relationship intention (HRI) customers than among low relationship intention (LRI) customers. RI is a stronger indicator of customers’ trust in and commitment to cell phone service providers than contracts in both countries. This makes HRI customers more receptive to relationship marketing strategies than customers with contracts or LRI customers, as HRI customers trust and commit to cell phone service providers significantly more.

Ključne riječi

trust, commitment, relationship marketing, cell phone industry, contract, relationship intention, emerging markets

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