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Bridging the gap between suppliers and customers through relationship promoters: theoretical considerations and empirical results

Achim Walter (Assistant Professor, Institute of Strategic Management and Corporate Strategy, University of Karlsruhe, Germany)
Hans Georg Gemünden (Head, Institute of Strategic Management and Corporate Strategy, University of Karlsruhe, Germany)

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing

ISSN: 0885-8624

Article publication date: 1 April 2000

Abstract

Despite the pivotal importance of marketing‐oriented boundary spanners for successful relationship development, only a few studies have investigated the influence of these boundary spanners on relationship outcomes. Findings of this study show that relationship advancement through a relationship promoter in the supplier or customer firm have a positive significant impact on the growth of sales within the relationship and the supplier’s share of a customer’s business. Relationship promoters are persons who identify appropriate partners of different organizations, bring them together, and facilitate the dialogue and the exchange processes between them. Relationship promoters support interactive learning processes and solve inter‐organizational conflicts. Furthermore, they fulfil an important social task. Relationship promoters overcome existing distances between partner firms and develop an understanding for the situation and objectives of the respective partner.

Keywords

Citation

Walter, A. and Georg Gemünden, H. (2000), "Bridging the gap between suppliers and customers through relationship promoters: theoretical considerations and empirical results", Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, Vol. 15 No. 2/3, pp. 86-105. https://doi.org/10.1108/08858620010316813

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

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