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Article
Publication date: 12 June 2017

Torsten J. Gerpott, Sebastian May and Gokhan Nas

In the field of mobile communications services (MCS), it is of importance to segment MCS users to support operators in better tailoring their offers to the needs of specific…

Abstract

Purpose

In the field of mobile communications services (MCS), it is of importance to segment MCS users to support operators in better tailoring their offers to the needs of specific customer groups. This paper analyzes the suitability of national origin of MCS subscribers to segment residential customers into groups with significantly diverging usage behaviors in a sample living in one of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states with a large share of expatriates in its population, particularly from South Asian countries. If MCS use patterns vary considerably between nationals, South Asian migrants and other foreign nationalities, it makes much sense to segment customers at least into these three groups.

Design/methodology/approach

The investigation applies discriminant and regression analysis on a sample of 4,892 residential postpaid MCS customers in a GCC country. The sample comprises individual usage data of 2,446 national citizens and an equal number of non-nationals between July 2014 and July 2015, living in the focal country. The data set was extracted from the billing and customer management systems of a collaborating mobile network operator (MNO).

Findings

The results imply that national origin is a highly significant predictor of individual MCS usage. Nationals and all expatriates primarily differ in international voice and SMS usage but not in established national MCS and mobile internet use intensity. Among expatriates, South Asians consume more national and international voice minutes than migrants originating from other foreign nations.

Research limitations

The analysis is based on objective MCS usage data retrieved from an MNO’s data warehouse. It lacks information on customer perceptions of the utility of various MNO service categories and on other individual characteristics, such as the customers’ level of education or language proficiency. To overcome this limitation, empirical research is needed that incorporates additional objective customer descriptors as well as subjective perceptual constructs.

Practical implications

MNOs are well advised to develop service bundles and tariff portfolios specifically designed for nationals and for different groups of expatriates.

Originality/value

The paper extends the literature on MCS usage behavior in Arab states in general and on customer MCS usage segmentation based on individuals’ national citizenship in particular.

Details

Digital Policy, Regulation and Governance, vol. 19 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-5038

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 May 2016

Torsten J. Gerpott and Sebastian May

Providers of cloud computing storage services (CCSS) charge offers in several unit bundles for a lump sum per bundle. This non-linear pricing approach is known as a bucket-pricing…

Abstract

Purpose

Providers of cloud computing storage services (CCSS) charge offers in several unit bundles for a lump sum per bundle. This non-linear pricing approach is known as a bucket-pricing plan (BPP). If a customer exploits the purchased bucket, he/she can opt for the next higher bucket or refrain from further CCSS use. CCSS suppliers are faced with an optimization problem concerning the number of buckets as well as their lower and upper storage volume boundaries. The purpose of this paper is to develop a model, which supports CCSS suppliers in deriving a BPP-structure and which maximizes their profit in varying market constellations.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors develop a multi-period model of tariff choice decisions of private customers of CCSS. The model is applied in Monte Carlo simulations to determine profit-maximal tariff structures as a function of different market characteristics such as median demand saturation, demand heterogeneity, average price per storage unit and bucket ceiling allocation (identical size of each bucket within the frame set by the lower and upper overall boundary, varying sizes of the buckets offered, so that the interval between two ceilings consecutively increases for subsequent buckets) and type of a customer’s utility function.

Findings

The simulation analysis suggests that demand heterogeneity and average price per unit are the most influential factors for CCSS tariff structure optimization. Price plans with more than two buckets tend to generate higher profits than simple schemes with two buckets only if demand heterogeneity is low and the average price per storage unit is high and/or median saturation level of customers is low.

Originality/value

Despite the popularity of BPP among providers of CCSS for consumers, there is a lack of scholarly modeling work on the profit implications of the number of buckets entailed in a scheme and the size/ceilings of the various buckets on offer. The model suggested in this paper is a first step toward narrowing this research gap.

Details

Journal of Modelling in Management, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5664

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 17 October 2016

Torsten J. Gerpott and Nima Ahmadi

To better understand the use intensity of e-government service offerings among citizens, a considerable number of studies have examined correlations between various attitudinal…

Abstract

Purpose

To better understand the use intensity of e-government service offerings among citizens, a considerable number of studies have examined correlations between various attitudinal constructs related to such offerings and citizens’ service adoption (intentions). This investigational paper aims to take a different angle by exploring associations between a set of 11 objectively identifiable household and individual behavioral and socio-demographic characteristics on the one side and three levels of e-government services use on the other.

Design/methodology/approach

The empirical analysis is based on survey responses of a random sample of 17,012 individuals residing in Germany.

Findings

Ordinal logistic regression analysis suggests that citizens with low use levels of public e-service offerings are most likely younger male persons with low levels of computer literacy, internet affinity and education, who have a migration background and live in small mid-level-income households located in rural communities.

Practical implications

The findings imply that public institutions may find it difficult to rapidly raise e-government acceptance by distributing only “technocratic” information explaining various service options. Public authorities should consider supplementing “pure” information programs by measures which ensure that the software of e-government service platforms is designed in a way guaranteeing a very high level of “usability”. Furthermore, they should analyze whether the benefits of providing e-government services in specific foreign languages outweigh the costs of such a service extension. If this is the case, an easy-to-use software menu item should be introduced which enables citizens to switch to another common foreign language.

Originality/value

The contribution of this paper results from the analysis of a set of objective predictors of e-government service use in a large random sample of citizens residing in Germany, whereas most prior studies are based on surveys of small convenience samples in other countries.

Details

Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, vol. 10 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6166

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 June 2014

Torsten J. Gerpott and Nima Ahmadi

International roaming (IR) makes it possible to conveniently use mobile communication services (MCS) such as MI access abroad without switching providers, devices or subscriber…

Abstract

Purpose

International roaming (IR) makes it possible to conveniently use mobile communication services (MCS) such as MI access abroad without switching providers, devices or subscriber identity module (SIM) cards. To increase the intensity of competition in the intra-European Union market for IR services, customers will be enabled to buy IR voice and MI access services separately from their existing domestic MCS, as of July, 2014. Specifically, for separated international MI services providers can choose from three different charge types (use-dependent, flat and combination of flat and use-dependent). The purpose of this paper is to empirically examine customer preferences regarding these tariff types for separated international MI services.

Design/methodology/approach

Six research questions concerning antecedents of tariff type preferences for separated international MI access services are derived from a literature review. They are empirically addressed by analyzing survey responses obtained for a sample of 496 German-speaking MCS users.

Findings

Customers who actively seek for IR price information, consider IR services to be useful, exhibit high use intensities of MI services, do not restrict their MI usage when travelling abroad and tend to prefer flat rates to other pricing schemes. In contrast to these rather “active users”, customers favoring strictly use-dependent tariff plans exhibit significantly lower IR price information seeking efforts and comparatively low use intensities of MI services. Pricing schemes with MI allowances are especially liked by customers who are well-informed regarding and satisfied with IR prices, report above average use intensities of MI services, restrict their MI use abroad, are more likely to switch providers and use MCS mainly for job-related purposes.

Research limitations/implications

The study is based on a German-speaking sample, which deviates from the German adult population. Additionally, the analysis is limited to stated instead of behaviorally revealed preferences for cross-border MI tariff types. Price thresholds influencing whether a cross-border MI tariff is entered into a consumer’s relevant set of offerings are not examined.

Practical implications

The research suggests that mobile network operators are well-advised to offer a clearly structured menu of a limited number of tariffs directed to the three profiled customer segments. Notwithstanding the advantages of such a set of rate plans, international MI tariff schemes with a data volume allowance appear to be generally beneficial both from a provider and an end-customer perspective.

Originality/value

To date, little is known about customer preferences concerning the three rate plan categories and on antecedents of such preferences in the field of MI access abroad. The present study takes a first step to narrowing this knowledge gap.

Article
Publication date: 1 May 1992

Torsten J. Gerpott and Brian Bloch

More and more firms view the acquisition of foreign firms as animportant component of their internationalization strategy. An importantbut frequently overlooked condition for the…

Abstract

More and more firms view the acquisition of foreign firms as an important component of their internationalization strategy. An important but frequently overlooked condition for the successful implementation of such a strategy is the consistent and appropriate integration of human resource management into the overall internationalization strategy (global, multilocal, hybrid). Offers guidelines on the significance and contents of human resource management practices in this context. The emphasis is on the strategically appropriate integration of the target organization with the acquiring corporation.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 11 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 January 2008

Torsten J. Gerpott, Sandra E. Thomas and Alexander P. Hoffmann

The purpose of this paper is to investigate intangible disclosure quality (IDQ) in an international sample of 29 stock‐quoted telecommunications network operators (TNOs). IDQ is…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate intangible disclosure quality (IDQ) in an international sample of 29 stock‐quoted telecommunications network operators (TNOs). IDQ is captured separately for annual reports and websites of TNOs using a set of seven intangible asset categories. The article also explores associations between annual report and website IDQ on the one hand and variables interpreted either as IDQ antecedents (e.g. firm size) or as IDQ performance consequences (e.g. market‐to‐book ratio) on the other.

Design/methodology/approach

TNOs' 2003 or 2003/2004 annual reports and TNOs' websites (as of May 2005) were subjected to content analytical procedures in order to quantify sample firms' disclosure quality levels for seven categories of intangible assets derived from a framework suggested by the Deutsche Schmalenbach Gesellschaft für Betriebswirtschaft eV.

Findings

Both annual report and website IDQ levels of TNOs were relatively low. Intangible disclosures were often limited to small pieces of qualitative information. Annual report and website IDQ are significantly positively interrelated. IDQ varies significantly by the home region of the TNO, with European TNOs displaying higher quality levels than their American counterparts. IDQ measures were not significantly related to TNOs' financial performance criteria.

Research limitations/implications

Research limitations result from the study's single industry focus, small sample size and the limited range of variables investigated as potential IDQ antecedents/consequences.

Practical implications

TNOs get insights on IDQ within their industry. Regulators/standard setting accounting institutions are encouraged to encounter industry‐specific intangible characteristics by industry‐focused intangible measurement rules in addition to an overall intangible reporting framework.

Originality/value

This study is the first investigation that simultaneously analyzes IDQ both in a firm's annual report and on its website. Further, it is unique in its use of uni‐ and multivariate analytical techniques exploring IDQ antecedents/consequences and in its single industry/TNO focus.

Details

Journal of Intellectual Capital, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1469-1930

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 7 March 2016

Torsten J. Gerpott and Ilknur Bicak

This paper aims to empirically analyze the extent to which advertising reception among consumers with a migration background (German-Turks) is influenced by a person’s strength of…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to empirically analyze the extent to which advertising reception among consumers with a migration background (German-Turks) is influenced by a person’s strength of national identifications with his/her country-of-origin (COO) and with his/her country-of-residence (COR). The focus is on Turkey-sensitive advertisements (ads) of telecommunication service suppliers in Germany because such communication measures are quite common and about three million German-Turks constitute an economically important group.

Design/methodology/approach

Measures of COO and COR identification as well as of three ad reception criteria were obtained in a survey of 291 German-Turks and analyzed via moderated regression models.

Findings

Strength of COO identification was a significantly positive predictor of the frequency with which participants remembered Turkey-sensitive ads for telecommunication services. Additionally, COO identification related significantly to two criteria that capture facets of attitudes toward such ads. By contrast, COR identification acted partly as a moderator which attenuated links between respondents’ COO identification and two ad reception measures. Nevertheless, German-Turks with a strong COR identification (i.e. “accultured” consumers) were still receptive to Turkey-sensitive telecommunication services ads even if their self-image was simultaneously strongly dependent on their COO. “Alienated” German-Turks who identify neither with their COO nor with their COR were least responsive to ethnic ads.

Practical implications

The research indicates that marketing practitioners should not use uniform communication measures to address migrant consumers with a specific COO but segment this target group further by simultaneously considering their members’ COO and COR identifications.

Originality/value

The contribution of this paper results from the simultaneous inclusion of both COO and COR identifications as factors explaining differences in reactions to communication measures among migrant consumers which share the same COO. Furthermore, the scarcity of empirical work on reactions of German-Turks to ethnomarketing is reduced.

Article
Publication date: 29 June 2010

Torsten J. Gerpott

This paper aims to empirically explore the extent to which actual use intensity of mobile internet (MI) access is influenced by factual use conditions and evaluative perceptions

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to empirically explore the extent to which actual use intensity of mobile internet (MI) access is influenced by factual use conditions and evaluative perceptions of MI adopters. Furthermore, it analyzes relationships between this usage behavior and mobile voice call as well as SMS activity quantities at the individual customer level.

Design/methodology/approach

Indicators of actual MI, voice call and SMS use intensity were obtained for a sample of 443 MI customers of a mobile network operator (MNO) in Germany. The objective behavioral measures were integrated with adopter responses collected through a standardized telephone survey.

Findings

Factual MI use conditions (MI tariff type and appliance class, fixed broadband internet home access) were significant predictors of MI use intensity, whereas MI‐related evaluative perceptions (e.g. MI value assessment) were not. Distributions of MI, voice telephony, and SMS use intensities were highly skewed. A small group of users disproportionately contributed to the total MI traffic generated by the sample. Most customers use MI only to a limited extent after the initial adoption. MI use intensity was not significantly correlated with mobile voice communication or SMS activity levels.

Research limitations/implications

The study included data only from early MI subscribers of one MNO in a single country. The system‐captured MI use intensity indicator did not distinguish between different variants of MI services. Measures of factual MI use circumstances were not very fine‐grained. Common potential perceptual antecedents of MI acceptance (e.g. usefulness, ease of use) were excluded due to constraints imposed by the collaborating MNO.

Practical implications

The research indicates that MNO should consider promoting MI use intensity by offering “packages” that encompass a flat rate and a laptop at special bundle prices. Further, MNO are well‐advised to develop activities which discourage customers who do not already have a fixed broadband access at home from the acquisition of such an installation in the future. Finally, managers are urged to critically reflect the validity of single rater studies on MI acceptance before drawing practical conclusions from this type of work.

Originality/value

The contributions of this paper result from the exploration of actual usage behaviors of MI adopters and the integration of system‐captured use intensity measures with survey responses. This approach is seminal in better understanding limitations of purely questionnaire‐based investigations on use of mobile communication services in general and MI in particular. Additionally, the study demonstrates the importance of considering factual MI use circumstances as factors shaping MI use intensity.

Details

info, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6697

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 March 2016

Torsten J Gerpott and Sebastian May

This paper aims to provide a foundation for firms trying to evaluate the suitability of Internet of Things (IoT)-enhanced offerings against the background of their current…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide a foundation for firms trying to evaluate the suitability of Internet of Things (IoT)-enhanced offerings against the background of their current portfolio. Currently, quite a number of companies consider revising or extending their portfolio of products and services by incorporating IoT components to achieve competitive advantages. However, an unsystematic and autotelic addition of connected sensors and actuators to present offerings does not necessarily lead to substantial market success.

Design/methodology/approach

The approach of this paper is to identify different roles which IoT components can play in offering portfolios; clarify business development objectives, which can be achieved by the combination of products and services with IoT components; and report case examples which help to highlight how business development objectives can be reached with the help of IoT components fulfilling specific roles.

Findings

IoT components may play three different roles when integrated into product or service offerings. This role differentiation is crucial in understanding how IoT amendments can be instrumental in supporting the achievement of specific business development objectives pursued by a firm.

Research limitations/implications

The framework is based on conceptual considerations. To overcome this limitation, empirical research on technology-, cost- and customer-related impacts of IoT-enhanced offerings is desirable.

Practical/implications

Firms need to evaluate three roles which IoT components can play against the background of their present product portfolio when developing new business strategies.

Originality/value

This paper combines literature on the principles of operation of IoT applications and business models with current use-cases to provide implications for IoT-related business development issues.

Article
Publication date: 16 August 2011

Nejc M. Jakopin and Andreas Klein

Diffusion levels of broadband internet access vary across triad countries and emerging markets alike. Major industrialised nations face criticism for allegedly “lagging behind” in

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Abstract

Purpose

Diffusion levels of broadband internet access vary across triad countries and emerging markets alike. Major industrialised nations face criticism for allegedly “lagging behind” in broadband development. This study aims to highlight drivers of broadband take‐up that help explain and properly evaluate the diffusion situation of a country.

Design/methodology/approach

The study investigates worldwide broadband internet access take‐up in terms of fixed and mobile broadband penetration and broadband launch lead time by drawing on a wide range of variables of which some have not been examined in previous studies (e.g. home office workers, service sector activities or local call prices).

Findings

Results show that broadband internet take‐up significantly benefits from economic prosperity and computer penetration. Moreover, general regulatory quality has a significant influence. The effect of other regulatory and market environment variables is declining over time with associations becoming insignificant in 2009 data.

Research limitations/implications

Further research based on findings and limitations of the present study should incorporate quality of broadband, more accurate/differentiated measurement of broadband, conditionality, moderating effects, non‐linearity, as well as broadband implications for economic development.

Originality/value

This study covers a broad set of indicators and includes time lags in multivariate analysis to generate a holistic picture of broadband development drivers and their relevance over time.

Details

info, vol. 13 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6697

Keywords

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