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Inward internationalization of consumer services: lessons from Australian firms

Constanza Bianchi (School of Advertising, Marketing and Public Relations, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia)

Journal of Services Marketing

ISSN: 0887-6045

Article publication date: 5 July 2011

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Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to explore the inward internationalization process of consumer services. It also aims to conduct a review of the service internationalization literature and use the resource‐based view of the firm as a theoretical approach.

Design/methodology/approach

Case study methodology is used to explore the internationalization process of five different consumer service sectors: tourism, education, accommodation, transport and entertainment. The main data collection method was interviews conducted with top managers of 12 Australian consumer service firms from these sectors.

Findings

Findings of this study show that inward internationalizing services confront most of their barriers, such as immigration policies, exchange rate fluctuations, and cultural differences, in the domestic market where the service is provided. The findings also suggest that superior intentional performance for consumer service firms combines firm‐specific resources and capabilities, such as market orientation, service quality, cultural sensitivity, international communicational activities, partnerships and networks, with country‐specific resources and capabilities, such as country‐of‐origin image and government support.

Research limitations/implications

This is one of the few studies in the academic literature that directly addresses the issue of inward internationalization of consumer services. Limitations derive from the qualitative nature of this study.

Practical implications

The process of inward internationalization applies to a broad range of service industries and can assist firms to develop more effective international marketing strategies.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the international services literature by identifying the main barriers and drivers of international performance for inward internationalizing consumer service firms, which is a topic that has been neglected in the literature.

Keywords

Citation

Bianchi, C. (2011), "Inward internationalization of consumer services: lessons from Australian firms", Journal of Services Marketing, Vol. 25 No. 4, pp. 282-293. https://doi.org/10.1108/08876041111143113

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited