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Article
Publication date: 15 June 2010

Nancy J. Miller, Terry L. Besser and Sandra Sattler Weber

The paper examines the building of a new business network by women apparel retailers operating in small Midwest US communities to better understand the network development process…

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Abstract

Purpose

The paper examines the building of a new business network by women apparel retailers operating in small Midwest US communities to better understand the network development process and the contributions to small business marketing strategy.

Design/methodology/approach

Work draws upon the theoretical and empirical tradition of network studies using prior research for considering current small business owners. This case study approach involved documenting the evolution of relationships among retailers over a five‐year period by means of primary data collection from multiple sources.

Findings

Two theoretical network development frameworks were supported in the identification and description of critical transformation phases and the implicit impacts on retail member firms.

Research limitations/implications

The case study involves a limited number of business owners in the same retail sector operating in small towns. It may not be representative of retail operations of different size, in different sectors, and in different sized communities. However, insights are gained that can be used to build studies that focus on a variety of business types, geographic locations, and owner demographics.

Practical implications

The paper shows that networking is a viable market strategy for small community retailers and that economic as well as social benefits are accrued from interactions with network members.

Originality/value

Given the unique challenges of operating a small independent business, this work provides suggestions for building networks that generate collaboration as a marketing strategy.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 19 April 2011

This paper reviews the latest management developments across the globe and pinpoints practical implications from cutting‐edge research and case studies.

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper reviews the latest management developments across the globe and pinpoints practical implications from cutting‐edge research and case studies.

Design/methodology/approach

This briefing is prepared by an independent writer who adds their own impartial comments and places the articles in context.

Findings

According to one well‐entrenched belief, it is not what, but who, people know that enables them to get on in life. These sentiments can be applied to the world of commerce too. Business annals will testify how many companies developed links with powerful others and completely transformed their fortunes as a result. For the little guys, any chance to build such associations can be a godsend. In the retail sector, for instance, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) often face considerable challenges in their quest to succeed. Resources are naturally limited, as is the time to engage in important market research. Then there is the level of competition. Discount stores frequently muscle in and threaten their already modest customer base. Some analysts predict that changes within the business environment will make things even tougher for smaller concerns over the next few years. In the face of this apparent adversity, how can SMEs respond? One possibility is to join with similar operators and create a network.

Originality/value

The briefing saves busy executives and researchers hours of reading time by selecting only the very best, most pertinent information and presenting it in a condensed and easy‐to digest format.

Details

Strategic Direction, vol. 27 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0258-0543

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 15 June 2010

Len Tiu Wright

343

Abstract

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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