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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Journal of Research in Marketing, Volume 30, Issue 1, March 2013, Pages 36–45
Data on 19,653 firms from 73 emerging economies on four continents were analyzed to examine how a firm's marketing capabilities affect its performance. The results show that the relationship is systematically moderated by the level of institutional development in an emerging market. Economic conditions, legislative institutions and social values all have an impact. Superior marketing capabilities have a stronger performance impact in countries with higher levels of economic development and in individualistic societies. These capabilities have a weaker impact in countries with strong legislative systems.
This study examined whether the relationship between a firm's marketing capabilities and its performance is systematically moderated by the institutional context in which it competes. Data on 19,653 firms in 73 emerging economies suggest that marketing capabilities positively affect firm performance and that the impact is differentially conditional on the market's economic development, legislative institutions, and social attitudes. Marketing capabilities have a greater effect on firm performance in countries with higher levels of economic development and in individualistic, rather than collectivist, societies. Marketing capabilities have a weaker effect in countries with a strong legislative system. These findings provide broad support for the conceptual model and for the relevance of including country-level institutional constructs when explaining the relationship between marketing capabilities and performance. These conclusions extend previous scholarly work on this topic by examining the role of firm capabilities in emerging economies. Previous extensive studies on firm-specific capabilities such as marketing capabilities (e.g., Kotabe et al., 2002), technological capabilities (e.g., Song et al., 2005) or operations capabilities (e.g., Worren et al., 2002) have been conducted in Western countries, particularly in the United States, and insufficient attention has been paid to emerging markets heretofore (Steenkamp, 2005). Emerging markets present significant departures from the assumptions of theories developed for Western economies and provide natural laboratories to test those theories’ assumptions and underlying mechanisms and to generalize their findings and identify boundary conditions (Burgess & Steenkamp, 2006). Unlike previous studies that have focused on firms in developed markets (Morgan et al., 2009 and Vorhies et al., 2009) or in a limited number of cases in emerging markets (Fahy et al., 2000), this study examined the interplay of capabilities and institutions using a comprehensive sample of 19,653 firms in 73 emerging economies. The results clearly show that marketing capabilities have a positive relationship with firm performance and that the impact is contingent on a market's economic, legislative, and social conditions. These findings thus generalize previous academic work to a much broader context by showing the importance of firm capabilities in emerging markets and complement the findings of previous studies by pointing to the limitations of firm capabilities. These results also extend the institution-based view of competition by developing a contingent perspective. In response to calls for examining the moderating role of institutional contexts (Burgess & Steenkamp, 2006), this study has developed a contingent view of capabilities by assessing how economic, legislative, and social conditions help determine their value. The results show that the effect of good marketing becomes stronger when economic development is more advanced. This finding suggests the importance of economic development in enabling market-based capabilities to function effectively. With the development of the economy, customer purchasing power increases, and customer preferences diverge. Firms can achieve better performance through investing in marketing capabilities. The results also show that the development of the legislative system weakens the effect of marketing capabilities. As laws and regulations become more transparent, and contract enforcement is more predictable, firms are motivated to invest more resources in developing new products and technologies to attract customers and gain market share. The role of marketing capabilities declines. In addition, marketing capabilities have a stronger effect in individualistic societies. Such societies have diversified preferences, and good marketing enables a firm to sense customers’ specific needs and address them by investing more resources and recruiting and training employees to satisfy them. Taken together, the findings enrich the development of a contingent IBV of capabilities, explaining how they interact with the institutional environment to affect firm performance.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
In recent decades, there has been an unprecedented interest in capabilities and their effect on a firm's competitive advantage. Capabilities are the accumulated, complex bundles of skills and knowledge embedded in organizational processes (Eisenhardt and Martin, 2000 and Helfat and Peteraf, 2003). Previous scholarly research has identified technological capabilities (e.g., Song, Droge, Hanvanich, & Calantone, 2005), operational capabilities (e.g., Worren, Moore, & Cardona, 2002), marketing capabilities (e.g., Kotabe, Srinivasan, & Aulakh, 2002) and management capabilities (e.g., Desarbo, Di Benedetto, Song, & Sinha, 2005) as important. That work has shown empirically that all such capabilities can significantly affect a firm's performance (e.g., Krasnikov & Jayachandran, 2008). In spite of the growing consensus that capabilities are critical sources of superior firm performance, the previous research has two important deficiencies. First, most studies have been conducted in developed markets, and only a few were undertaken in emerging markets (Burgess & Steenkamp, 2006). This lacuna is surprising because emerging markets offer a fertile ground for establishing the generalizability of the research findings obtained from developed markets and to assess the extent to which they are specific to the institutional context (Steenkamp, 2005). Emerging markets not only provide a natural laboratory for testing theories and developing new ones, but they also offer practical relevance because success in emerging markets is crucial to the future of many companies (Burgess & Steenkamp, 2006). The second problem with the body of scholarly work to date has been inattention to the role of institutional environments in shaping the effects of capabilities. Researchers have long recognized that the utility of capabilities is likely to vary with the nature of the market and the social environment (Eisenhardt & Martin, 2000), but previous studies have nevertheless overwhelmingly focused on developed markets where the institutional context can be assumed to vary relatively slightly. This focus represents a serious limitation because institutions in emerging markets normally differ markedly from those typical of developed markets (Burgess & Steenkamp, 2006). Compared with developed markets, emerging markets are characterized by rapid changes in their economic, political and social institutions (Hoskisson et al., 2000 and Peng, 2003). This volatility renders it less obvious whether firms operating in an emerging market should build market-based capabilities to achieve competitive advantage, considering how fast the institutional environment can change (Kim, Kim and Hoskisson, 2010 and Peng et al., 2008). It is important, therefore, to look at the hidden assumptions and examine how institutional variations condition the role of firm capabilities. To address these gaps, this study was designed to link marketing capabilities with firm performance and to examine how the role of marketing capabilities varies among different institutional environments. The study hypothesized that marketing capabilities have a stronger performance impact in more developed countries and in individualistic societies and have a weaker impact in countries with stronger legislative systems. These hypotheses were tested using comprehensive survey data on 19,653 firms from 73 emerging economies. The contribution of this study is threefold. First, this study develops a contingent, institution-based perspective on firm capabilities. This study extends prior academic work to emerging markets and examines to what extent and within what limits capabilities matter in emerging markets. Second, this study contributes to an institution-based view of capabilities by theoretically arguing and empirically showing the moderating effect of economic, legislative and social institutions on the utility of a firm's capabilities. Third, the findings provide empirical evidence relating capabilities and institutional factors with firm performance in a large number of emerging economies, which generalizes the findings to a broader context.