ویژگی های محصول و ارزش ویژه برند در حوزه تلفن همراه : نقش واسطه ای تجربه مشتری
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Journal of Information Management, Volume 32, Issue 2, April 2012, Pages 139–146
There are studies showing that utilitarian (perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness) and hedonic (entertainment and aesthetics) attributes of products are two fundamental resources that ensure brand equity in the mobile domain. However, few studies examine the attributes of products and how and why such resources influence mobile brand equity. In this study, a survey was carried out on 262 mobile users in Taiwan to examine the mediating effects of customer experience on the relationship between product attributes on mobile brand equity. Our findings suggest that utilitarian and hedonic attributes of products affect mobile brand equity through customer experience. In other words, perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness, entertainment, and aesthetics may not be intrinsic value; their value on mobile brand equity is realized through customer experience. However, whereas the effect of perceived ease of use on mobile brand equity is partially mediated, perceived usefulness, entertainment, and aesthetics are fully mediated by customer experience. By showing the differential effects of product attributes on mobile brand equity, this study provides a more refined understanding of the interplay among product attributes, customer experience, and mobile brand equity. The results suggest that by overlooking the mediating role of customer experience, previous research may have provided an overly optimistic view of the value of product attributes in mobile brand equity.
Mobile services, such as short messaging service, mobile data service, and contactless m-payment, have significant potential in serving customers in wireless environments. The rapid proliferation of mobile devices including mobile phones, web-enabled personal digital assistants, and other handheld computers is resulting in the growth of such items at an astonishing rate. In terms of mobile domain, consumers consider both hedonic and utilitarian product attributes. The literature has established brand equity for the mobile domain. Mobile brand equity or m-brand equity is enhanced by two distinct, yet highly complementary, factors: product attributes (Chitturi et al., 2008, Dhar and Klaus, 2000, Kivetz and Itamar, 2002, Okada, 2005, Strahilevitz and John, 1998 and Voss et al., 2003) and customer experience (Gentile et al., 2007, LaSalle and Britton, 2003 and Shaw and Ivens, 2005). Product attributes refer to utilitarian (practical, functional) and hedonic (playful, joyful) benefits of products. Customer experience refers to the interaction with customers that ensures the derivation of utilitarian and hedonic value. Although the contributions of previous studies are substantial, extant research is lacking in three aspects. First, the brand equity underscores the importance of several different attributes of products in brand equity, namely, entertainment and aesthetics, particularly in the mobile domain. There is, however, little insight into the relative importance of the different attributes of products as drivers of brand equity. This study makes contributions in highlighting entertainment and aesthetics of product attributes in mobile brand equity. Second, previous studies have focused almost entirely on the effects of product attributes on brand equity. No detailed explanations are, however, offered as to how and why customer experience matters in these relationships. Yet it is often implicitly assumed that customer experience is a salient factor in transforming product attributes into brand equity. The current state of the literature is lacking and inconsistent because a key assumption is that it is not the product itself, but rather its interaction with customers, that drives brand equity. This study offers the empirical evidences of how and why customer experience mediates the relationship between product attributes and brand equity in the mobile domain. Third, customer experience has traditionally been positioned as a moderator in the relationship between product attributes and brand equity. However, because product attributes may make communication difficult, interaction becomes a key factor that determines the nature of customer experience designs. This view implies that product attributes affect brand equity through their effects on the design of customer experience. The extant research has paid little attention to these different perspectives of the role of customer experience. The moderating view suggests that product attributes are inherently valuable, so that customer experience determines the strength of their effect on brand equity. In contrast, the mediating view suggests that product attributes are not inherently valuable and that the product attributes could affect brand equity through their effects on customer experience. If the role of customer experience is that of a mediator rather than a moderator, we may need to reevaluate our stance toward the role of product attributes in brand equity. In examining the mediating view of customer experience, our findings also shed light on the level of importance researchers and managers need to place on the inherent value of product attributes.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This study contributes to mobile brand equity in three main ways. First, the study shows that customer experience plays an important role in mobile brand equity by partially mediating the effect of perceived ease of use and by fully mediating the effects of perceived usefulness, entertainment, and aesthetics on mobile brand equity. In other words, four product attributes may not be intrinsically valuable; their value on mobile brand equity is realized through customer experience. This is an important finding as it indicates that customer experience is an important mediator in the relationship between product attributes and mobile brand equity. Second, four product attributes have different effects on mobile brand equity. The full mediating role of customer experience on the mobile brand equity indicates that perceived usefulness, entertainment, and aesthetics are completely through customer experience. The partial mediating role of customer experience on the mobile brand equity indicates that perceived ease of use by itself, does contributes directly to mobile brand equity. The direct effect of perceived ease of use on mobile brand equity sheds light on the importance ascribed to the perspective of customer experience in mobile brand equity. Third, the objective of our study is to develop and validate a model for brand equity in a mobile domain. Our model builds on past literature by combining validated utilitarian, hedonic construct, and customer experience in a new context of mobile domain. 5.1. Managerial implications Our study calls on managers to consider the attributes (perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness, entertainment, and aesthetics) they use in developing new products and in properly designing customer experience. These attributes of products appear to influence the design of customer experience, which in turn affects mobile brand equity. Thus, the new insight for managers is that product attributes are inherently valuable for mobile brand equity, but emphasizing the customer experience may be detrimental to mobile brand equity. In this respect, our measures of product attributes could serve as guides for managers who want to collect and use utilitarian and hedonic benefits in line with these attributes. From a practitioner's perspective, the objective of this study has been to provide practical insights into ways of enhancing brand equity in the mobile domain. In addition to utilitarian attributes, hedonic attributes of products also play a critical role here. Accordingly, the design of the interface may be central in determining the level of entertainment (to meet the motivation of escapism, mood management, and achievement) and aesthetics (to reach formal, symbolic, and expressive quality) and thereby establish holistic customer experience. Our study also provides some insights into the relative importance of various product attributes in enhancing customer experience and mobile brand equity. Specifically, hedonic attributes are more important than utilitarian attributes in determining customer experience (as shown in Model 1). In contrast, when we consider the direct effects of product attributes on mobile brand equity (Model 2), utilitarian attributes appear to be more salient than hedonic attributes. 5.2. Limitations and future research directions This study has several limitations that should be considered in the interpretations of the findings. First, only mobile phone was investigated. Services that are more utilitarian in nature (such as mobile banking) may result in different relationships between the constructs of our model. Second, it may be worthwhile for future research to assess the role of individual differences in the ability to judge the entertainment and aesthetic attributes of products. Third, the data was collected in a single country. There was no evidence of sampling bias, but future studies would benefit from inclusion of a wider geography scope. Our findings also underscore the need for researchers to examine other factors that may also be antecedents of brand equity and customer experience.