Strategy Through the Eyes of the Consumer: An Exploratory Study Across Emerging Economies

Author: John A. Parnell, John E. Spillan, Nitish Singh

ABSTRACT:

Most published business strategy studies assign strategies to organizations by examining their competitive behaviors. In contrast, we argue that a richer conceptualization of strategy might be found by considering buyer behaviors as well, especially at the consumer level and in the global arena. A survey of consumers in Puerto Rico, Guatemala, Peru, and India demonstrates two distinct types of strategic factors also inherent in the purchase decision, (1) those directly related to the product or service such as price and quality, and (2) those indirectly related to the product or service such as advertising and brand reputation. In some but not all nations these factors were directly related to consumer preferences related to price orientation, independence, and brand consciousness. It is suggested that an organization’s business strategy may be better understood by creating a profile of the customers it serves along the lines of such preferences. In addition, future strategy-performance studies may benefit by incorporating perspectives of the buyers in the assessment of competitive strategy.

Key words: Consumer behavior, business strategy, consumer lifestyles, customer profiles, cross cultural.

Full Text: john-a-parnell-john-e-spillan-nitish-singh

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