Online from: 1987
Subject Area: Marketing
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|Title:||The role of cause and affect in service failure|
|Author(s):||L. Jean Harrison-Walker, (University of Houston – Clear Lake, Houston, Texas, USA)|
|Citation:||L. Jean Harrison-Walker, (2012) "The role of cause and affect in service failure", Journal of Services Marketing, Vol. 26 Iss: 2, pp.115 - 123|
|Keywords:||Behavioral outcomes, Causal attribution, Consumers, Emotions, Reconciliation, Service failures, Share-of-wallet|
|Article type:||Conceptual paper|
|DOI:||10.1108/08876041211215275 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
Purpose – The primary purpose of this paper is to explore the role of emotions that consumers experience as a result of assigning causal attributions to service failures. The secondary purpose is to consider the effects of each of these emotions on behavioral outcomes.
Design/methodology/approach – This paper extends the work of Wetzer, Zeelenberg, and Pieters regarding emotions and draws upon the existing literature to present a series of research propositions tying attributions to emotions and emotions to behavioral outcomes.
Findings – When a service failure occurs, customers experience any of a variety of negative emotions. The particular emotional reaction depends on the customer's perception of why the service failure occurred in the first place. Behavioral outcomes associated with service recovery therefore depend directly on the negative emotion and indirectly on the customer's perception of the cause.
Practical implications – To the extent that marketing managers can frame the cause of the service failure in their post-failure communications, recovery satisfaction may be increased leading, in turn, to more positive customer response outcomes. The specific managerial implications depend upon the emotional response experienced by the customer.
Originality/value – Research to date looking at causal attributions in service failure is limited to attributions based on stability and controllability and ties them to very few emotions; this paper identifies six attributions and ties each to a specific emotion. The behavioral outcomes of reconciliation and share-of-wallet are added to the traditional outcomes of repatronage intentions and negative word-of-mouth.
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