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Open access

Susana Costa e Silva, Adriana Monteiro and Paulo Duarte

Abstract

Shoes are probably one of the most difficult products to sell online due to the high need-for-touch (NFT) displayed: people need to experiment the product before buying it, more than in any other item. On another hand, women are more prone than men to buy fashion and apparel products through the web channel. This paper investigates the factors driving women consumers to shop footwear products online. A qualitative research method was used grounded on semi-structured, in-depth interviews that were conducted to corroborate the constructs defined in the proposed conceptual model namely: convenience, recreation, NFT and social e-shopping. The interviews were focused on the demand side to understand the female consumers’ perspective and on the top managers of women’s shoes companies representing the suppliers’ viewpoint. The results show that women highly appreciate the convenience that shopping shoes online provides as well as its recreational nature. The NFT also stands out in the shoe market context mainly due to the particularities related to shoe size. Additionally, social e-shopping was found not be as important for women as anticipated as they see social networks more as a communication platform for brands, and less as a factor that influences their predisposition to shop shoes online. On the suppliers’ side, the interviews revealed that managers believe in bloggers and social media influence and its consideration as part of the overall marketing strategy.

Open access

Mduduzi Biyase and September Rooderick

Abstract

We empirically investigates the factors that affect Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflows in five BRICS countries for the period 1990–2015. We address the selection bias and unobserved heterogeneity by estimating a panel Heckman selection method and attempts to account for both selection and endogeneity within the new two-stage method. After addressing the above mentioned econometric issues, the infrastructure and GDP per capita variables under the new two-stage method remain positive and significantly similar to the coefficient of infrastructure and GDP per capita under the panel Heckman selection model. In addition, the inverse Mills ratio maintain its level of statistical significance, confirming the presence of both sample selection bias and endogeneity.

Open access

Chip Walker

Abstract

In today’s world, knowing more about a brand can make people think worse of it. Rather than helping a brand, increased familiarity can actually add risk. This is a phenomenon referred to as “negative knowledge.” It happens when the more consumers know about a brand, the less they like it. Possible reasons can be that consumers feel embarrassed by the brand, that they have bad brand experiences or learn about them in the media or from friends, or that they dislike a company’s business motives.

Once consumers know something about a brand, it is hard for them to “un-know” it. During a time of media fragmentation when all managers are struggling to gain more fame for their brands, it’s critical to realize that brand knowledge comes with a potential dark side. While it’s always wise to avoid brand obscurity, marketers must be ever cognizant that what customers know about a brand really can do more harm than good.

Open access

Ivana Ilijašić Veršić

Abstract

Changes in understanding and interpretation of decision-making processes have shed more light on complex interplay given the different settings, and different actors. The limitations in human decision-making and their significance and long-term implications on organizational management or policy making inspired a large body of evidence and research. Exploration of decision-making processes spans over decades, and is closely connected to the role of power; the amount of power in organizations is usually joined by the knowledge and prior experience, which together play a significant role in decision-making process, as well in selection of candidates for the job. However, there is an evident void concerning publications on decision-making processes in academic institutions, and it rapidly becomes the focus of interest due to a specific opposition contained in its core; positions of high level administrators are held by the university professors with no mandatory previous experience and/or knowledge in organisational management.

Open access

Marc Fischer, Hyun Shin and Dominique M. Hanssens

Abstract

If company revenues fluctuate, the resulting volatility makes it more difficult to project the company’s future revenues and earnings and ensure steady cash-flow. This lessens investor confidence and, as such, can harm the financial health of a brand. So, effective marketing can have undesired financial side effects.

The optimal marketing behaviors derived with and without volatility calculations will be quite different. Analytically savvy companies will be able to gain competitive advantage from this realization.

Open access

Susan Fournier and Giana Eckhardt

Abstract

The physical and social realities, mental biases and limitations of being human differentiate human brands from others. It is their very humanness that introduces risk while generating the ability for enhanced returns. Four particular human characteristics can create imbalance or inconsistency between the person and the brand: mortality, hubris, unpredictability and social embeddedness. None of these qualities manifest in traditional non-human brands, and all of them present risks requiring active managerial attention. Rather than treating humans as brands and making humans into brands for sale in the commercial marketplace, our framework forces a focus on keeping a balance between the person and the personified object.

Open access

Dina Korent and Silvije Orsag

Abstract

The idea that working capital management impacts profitability and risk of a company is generally accepted and in last 10-15 years has acquired a substantial interest. Accordingly, from the aspect of the measure of efficiency of working capital management, the objective of this paper is to evaluate working capital management impact on profitability of Croatian software companies. This impact was examined using descriptive and correlation as well as panel regression analysis for six-year period (2008-2013). The results show that after controlling for characteristics of the company and macroeconomic conditions working capital management significantly affects the profitability of Croatian software firms. Moreover, the results imply the existence of a nonlinear, concave quadratic relationship between the net working capital and return on assets. This suggest the existence of an optimal level of net working capital that balances costs and benefits and maximizes profitability of analysed companies.

Open access

Pierre Berthon, Emily Treen and Leyland Pitt

Abstract

Brands can interact both directly and indirectly with fake news. In some instances, brands are the victims of fake news and, other times, the purveyors. Brands can either finance fake news or be the targets of it. Indirectly, they can be linked via image transfer, where either fake news contaminates brands, or brands validate fake news.

To control the risk of negative image transfer, the authors propose technical actions to address false news and systemic steps to rethink the management of brands in order to inoculate against various forms of “fakery” and to reestablish stakeholder trust. Systemic solutions involve a rethinking of brands and branding. Too often, brands have become uncoupled from the reality of the offerings they adorn. But brands are not ends in themselves, they are the result of outstanding offerings. They can act as interpretive frames, but they don’t unilaterally create reality, as many seem to believe. Brands should not be seen and managed as objects but as perceptual processes.

Open access

Alokparna Basu Monga and Liwu Hsu

Abstract

Understanding consumers’ ways of thinking can help identify strategies to limit brand damage and elicit more favorable reactions from disapproving consumers. Analytic thinkers’ beliefs about a brand are diluted when they see negative information; those of holistic thinkers remain unaffected. While both analytic and holistic thinkers blame the brand equally for quality and manufacturing problems, holistic thinkers are more likely to blame contextual factors outside of the brand than analytic thinkers. This ability of holistic thinkers to focus on the outside context is the reason why their brand beliefs are not diluted.

State-of-the-art crisis management should be proactive vis-à-vis potentially negative events. Crisis communications that highlight contextual factors as triggers of negative incidents offer a powerful mechanism to restrict brand damage. Additionally, elaborational messages that clarify the nature of the brand extension can curb negative thoughts from analytic consumers and boost their responses.