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“Yes, I know you”: the role of source familiarity in the relationship between service adaptive behavior and customer satisfaction

“Yes, I know you”: the role of source familiarity in the relationship between service adaptive... This study investigates the role of source familiarity in moderating the effect of service adaptive behavior (SAB) on customer satisfaction. Applying the accessibility–diagnosticity framework and situated cognition theory as the theoretical basis, this research hypothesizes that when customers are familiar with the source that provides the service (i.e. brand familiarity for Study 1 and personal familiarity for Study 2), customer satisfaction responses to SAB would be more moderate than when customers are not familiar with the source. Two studies were conducted to test the hypotheses.Design/methodology/approachTwo experiments manipulating SAB and the brand name familiarity (Study 1) and personal familiarity with the service staff (Study 2) as the source familiarity were conducted. Customer satisfaction as a function of source familiarity was measured to test the hypothesis that source familiarity moderates the relationship between SAB and customer satisfaction.FindingsCompared to unfamiliar sources, familiar sources generated a more moderate response in customer satisfaction as a function of SAB. High familiarity with the brand and service staff induced top-down, memory-based processing that overrides external stimuli as the basis of satisfaction judgment; bottom-up, stimulus-based processing relying on SAB for judgment kicked in only when the source familiarity is low.Practical implicationsFrom a practical point of view, this study indicates the importance of SAB, especially for brands with low awareness, and alludes to the comparative importance of relationship building in service delivery processes.Originality/valueThis study contributes to the literature by validating the role of contextual factors in influencing the impact of SAB on customer satisfaction. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Service Theory and Practice Emerald Publishing

“Yes, I know you”: the role of source familiarity in the relationship between service adaptive behavior and customer satisfaction

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
2055-6225
DOI
10.1108/jstp-01-2022-0017
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This study investigates the role of source familiarity in moderating the effect of service adaptive behavior (SAB) on customer satisfaction. Applying the accessibility–diagnosticity framework and situated cognition theory as the theoretical basis, this research hypothesizes that when customers are familiar with the source that provides the service (i.e. brand familiarity for Study 1 and personal familiarity for Study 2), customer satisfaction responses to SAB would be more moderate than when customers are not familiar with the source. Two studies were conducted to test the hypotheses.Design/methodology/approachTwo experiments manipulating SAB and the brand name familiarity (Study 1) and personal familiarity with the service staff (Study 2) as the source familiarity were conducted. Customer satisfaction as a function of source familiarity was measured to test the hypothesis that source familiarity moderates the relationship between SAB and customer satisfaction.FindingsCompared to unfamiliar sources, familiar sources generated a more moderate response in customer satisfaction as a function of SAB. High familiarity with the brand and service staff induced top-down, memory-based processing that overrides external stimuli as the basis of satisfaction judgment; bottom-up, stimulus-based processing relying on SAB for judgment kicked in only when the source familiarity is low.Practical implicationsFrom a practical point of view, this study indicates the importance of SAB, especially for brands with low awareness, and alludes to the comparative importance of relationship building in service delivery processes.Originality/valueThis study contributes to the literature by validating the role of contextual factors in influencing the impact of SAB on customer satisfaction.

Journal

Journal of Service Theory and PracticeEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 26, 2022

Keywords: Service adaptive behavior; Source familiarity; Customer satisfaction; Accessibility–diagnosticity framework; Situated cognition theory

References