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Informing a new business-to-business relationship: corporate identity and the emergence of a relationship identity

Simoes, Claudia and Mason, Katy (2012) Informing a new business-to-business relationship: corporate identity and the emergence of a relationship identity. European Journal of Marketing, 46 (5). pp. 684-711. ISSN 0309-0566

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Abstract

Purpose: Firms face the challenge of working with other firms in their business network so as to increase the value of products and services offered to end customers and consumers. This often requires managers to investing in developing strong and effective business-to-business relationships. While an extensive literature examines the different dimensions of successful business-to-business relationships, little research examines how perceived corporate identity is likely to influence market relationships. The paper explores how a buyer and supplier draw on their own identities and the identities of each other in ways that enable them to develop a basis on which to conceptualise and operationalise a strategic sourcing relationship. Specifically, the paper investigates the emergent relationship identity that results from buyer-seller interactions. Methodology/Approach: An in-depth, longitudinal case study of a buyer-supplier relationship which involves an engineering buyer and design services supplier. Findings: The study suggests that the corporate identity of companies involved in a relationship has a prominent role in informing and moulding the relationship. Further, the strategic scope of the analysed business relationship adds to the significance of corporate identity in informing the relationship and, ultimately, the business policy. Finally, a key contribution is the notion of ‘relationship identity’. Relationship identity conveys the idea that when companies develop a continuous relationship, the relationship itself has a unique identity. Value of paper: This paper addresses a gap in the literature concerning the areas of the role of corporate identity in business relationship development. The findings are important to research and practice with regard to how companies develop successful business-to-business relationships.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: European Journal of Marketing
Uncontrolled Keywords: Corporate Identity ; Market practices ; identity construction ; Supply Networks
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
Departments: Lancaster University Management School > Marketing
ID Code: 55671
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 09 Jul 2012 10:59
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2014 05:28
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/55671

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