Shaping customer satisfaction through self-awareness cues

M.T. Pham, C. Goukens, D. Lehmann, J.A. Stuart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Six studies show that subtle contextual cues that increase customers' self-awareness can be used to influence their satisfaction with service providers (while holding the objective service delivery constant). Self-awareness cues tend to increase customers' satisfaction when the outcome of a service interaction is unfavorable, but they tend to decrease customers' satisfaction when the outcome of the interaction is favorable. This is because higher self-awareness increases customers' tendency to attribute outcomes to themselves rather than to the provider. Self-awareness can even influence satisfaction with service interactions that occurred far in the past. The authors demonstrate these effects across a variety of lab and field settings with different simulated retail experiences and with different real-life service interactions, including college courses, meals taken at a university cafeteria, and items purchased at an actual clothing store. The results further show that attempts to shape customers' satisfaction by means of self-awareness are more likely to be effective when there is substantial customer responsibility for the outcome; when customers' responsibility is limited, such attempts may backfire.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)920-932
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Marketing Research
Volume47
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010

Keywords

  • customer satisfaction
  • judgment
  • self-awareness
  • service marketing
  • attribution
  • CONSCIOUSNESS
  • ATTRIBUTION
  • JUDGMENT
  • MODEL
  • DETERMINANTS
  • ATTENTION
  • BEHAVIOR
  • QUALITY
  • ONLINE
  • RECALL

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