nep-mkt New Economics Papers
on Marketing
Issue of 2012‒03‒08
six papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
University of Beira Interior and Technical University of Lisbon

  1. Search Costs, Demand-Side Economies and the Incentives to merge under Bertrand Competition By Jose L. Moraga-Gonzalez; Vaiva Petrikaite
  2. Monitoring and Improving Greek Banking Services Using Bayesian Networks: an Analysis of Mystery Shopping Data By Claudia Tarantola; Paola Vicard; Ioannis Ntzoufras
  3. Organic food consumer in Romania By Dumea, Andrei-Cosmin; Andrei, Andreia Gabriela
  4. Service quality perception and customers’ satisfaction in internet banking service: a case study of public and private sector banks By Kumbhar, Vijay
  5. “Mergers and difference-in-difference estimator: why firms do not increase prices?” By Juan Luis Jiménez; Jordi Perdiguero
  6. The Impact of State Marketing Board Operations on Smallholder Behavior and Incomes: The Case of Kenya By Mather, David; Jayne, T.S.

  1. By: Jose L. Moraga-Gonzalez (VU University Amsterdam); Vaiva Petrikaite (University of Groningen)
    Abstract: This paper studies the incentives to merge in a Bertrand competition model where firms sell differentiated products and consumers search for satisfactory deals. In the pre-merger symmetric equilibrium, the probability that a firm is the next one to be visited by a consumer is equal across firms not yet visited. However, in the short-run after a merger, because insiders raise their prices more than what the outsiders do, consumers start searching for good deals at the non-merging stores. Only when they do not find any product satisfactory enough, they continue searching at the merging stores. When search costs are sufficiently large, consumer traffic from the non-merging firms to the merged ones is so small that mergers become unprofitable. This new merger paradox,which is more likely the higher the number of non-merging firms, can be overcome in the mediumto long-run if the merging firms choose to stock their shelves with all the products of the constituent firms, which generates sizable search economies. Such demand-side economies can confer the merging firms a prominent position in the marketplace, in which case their price may even be lower than the price of the outsiders. In that case, consumers visit first the merged entity and the firms outside the merger lose out. Search cost economies may render a merger beneficial for consumers and so overall welfare may increase.
    Keywords: mergers; insiders; outsiders; short-run; long-run; consumer search; demand-side economies; economies of search; order of search; sequential search; prominence
    JEL: D40 D83 L13
    Date: 2012–02–21
  2. By: Claudia Tarantola (Department of Economics, University of Pavia); Paola Vicard (Department of Economics, University of Roma Tre); Ioannis Ntzoufras (Department of Statistics, Athens University of Economics and Business)
    Abstract: Mystery shopping is a well known marketing technique used by companies and marketing analysts to measure quality of service, and gather information about products and services. In this article, we analyse data from mystery shopping surveys via Bayesian networks in order to examine and evaluate the quality of service offered by the loan departments of Greek banks. We use mystery shopping visits to collect information about loan products and services and, by this way, evaluate the customer satisfaction and plan improvement strategies that will assist Banks to reach their internal standards. Bayesian Networks not only provide a pictorial representation of the dependence structure between the characteristics of interest but also allow to evaluate, interpret and understand the effects of possible improvement strategies.
    Keywords: Bayesian networks, Customer satisfaction, Mystery shopping, Service quality improvement.
    Date: 2012–01
  3. By: Dumea, Andrei-Cosmin; Andrei, Andreia Gabriela
    Abstract: Food consumption patterns are rapidly changing nowadays as a result of environmental issues, concern about the nutritional value of food and health issues. Issues such as quality and safety in food attract consumer interest in organic food that is free from pesticides and chemical residues (Childs and Polyzees, 1997; Zotos et al., 1999; Baltas, 2001; Fotopoulos and Krystallis, 2002). This study is attempted to gain knowledge about organic food consumer demographic characteristics and purchase behaviour of organic food in Romania. The research method used was online survey. A structured questionnaire was used which employed with true-false questions, multiple-choice questions and Likert scale questions. A convenience sample was used for this research.
    Keywords: organic food; organic consumer; demographics profile
    JEL: D12 D10 M30
    Date: 2012–02–10
  4. By: Kumbhar, Vijay
    Abstract: Present research is based on empirical evidences collected through the customers’ survey regarding to the customers perception in internet banking services provided by public and private sector banks. It is efforts to examine the relationship between the demographics and customers’ satisfaction in internet banking, relationship between service quality and customers’ satisfaction as well as satisfaction in internet banking service provided by the public sector bank private sector banks. Present research shows that, demographics of the customers’ are one of the most important factors which influence using internet banking services. Overall results show that highly educated, a person who are employees, businessmen and belongs to higher income group and younger group are using this service, however, remaining customers are not using this services. Results also show that overall satisfaction of employees, businessmen and professionals are higher in internet banking service. There is significant difference in the customers’ perception in internet banking services provided by the public and privates sector banks. Private sector banks are providing better service quality of internet banking than service provided by the public sector banks. Therefore, public sector banks should improve their internet banking services according to the expectations of their customers.
    Keywords: Service Quality; Perception; Customers’ Satisfaction;Internet Banking Service
    JEL: G2
    Date: 2011–12–10
  5. By: Juan Luis Jiménez (Facultad de Economía, Empresa y Turismo. Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria); Jordi Perdiguero (Faculty of Economics, University of Barcelona)
    Abstract: Difference-in-Difference (DiD) methods are being increasingly used to analyze the impact of mergers on pricing and other market equilibrium outcomes. Using evidence from an exogenous merger between two retail gasoline companies in a specific market in Spain, this paper shows how concentration did not lead to a price increase. In fact, the conjectural variation model concludes that the existence of a collusive agreement before and after the merger accounts for this result, rather than the existence of efficient gains. This result may explain empirical evidence reported in the literature according to which mergers between firms do not have significant effects on prices.
    Keywords: Mergers, Gasoline Market, Difference-in-Difference, Conjectural Variation. JEL classification: L12, L41, L44
    Date: 2012–02
  6. By: Mather, David; Jayne, T.S.
    Abstract: Despite the resurgence of parastatal marketing boards and strategic grain reserves over the last decade in eastern and southern Africa, there is little empirical evidence about how their activities affect smallholder input use and cropping decisions. This paper uses panel survey data from 1997-2007 on Kenyan smallholders to investigate the effect of Kenyaâs National Cereal Produce Board (NCPB) activities on farm-gate maize price expectations, output supply, and factor demand.
    Keywords: Kenya, Marketing, Smallholder, Agribusiness, Demand and Price Analysis, Food Security and Poverty,
    Date: 2011–11

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