He suggests that investment in a certain relationship before that relationship occurs, providing that the customer does eventually bring more revenue than costs to the company, is warranted. In order to shed more light on this situation, Blolos decided to determine "if and how the costs of managing existing and potential relationships are assessed" (92). Interviewing managers in 20 firms in four countries, the author found that the managers had difficulty grasping a definition for "relationship marketing," although they were aware of the concept of theory. They also had "cynical" views of relationships with other firms, although they identified relationship marketing as a positive practice. Further, Blols found that "a measurement problem exits," meaning it was difficult for managers to find a way to determine which relationships with which clients were worth pursuing (98). Although managers tended to believe that they had formed successful relationships, they could not measure that success.
Anderson, Paul Hourman. "Relationship Development and Communication: an integrative model."
In this article, author Paul Anderson makes an attempt at reconciling market relationship development with the classic elements of rhetorical thinking, as market relationships are a facet of communication. As "communication is a fundamental aspect of relationship development" the author argues that classical rhetorical philosophy is a very important part of relationship marketing, as both are concerned with using communication to persuade others (169). Classical rhetorical philosophy involves three aspects, ethos, logos, and pathos, which have traditionally been incorporated in persuasive writing. Generally, logos applies to logic, ethos applies to credibility, and pathos has to do with emotion. Since marketing relationships involve a great deal of persuasion and communication, the author argues that the model is applicable to business and business relationships. In order to reconcile these theories, the author proposes a model using the Jyske Bank in Denmark as a case study, suggesting that each communication relationship marketing event consists of three important phases -- the pre-relationship phase, the negotiation phase, and the relationship development phase. According to Anderson, "each of these phases involves a number of challenges in terms of the design of communication means and strategies" (171). Anderson goes on to communicate what each of these challenge is in each phase, using the Jyske Bank as a reference point. Based on this information, Anderson concludes that "because communication needs to change during the relationship-building process, relationship marketing management has to adjust its communication strategy accordingly" through the proposed model focusing on the important phases identified earlier, as well as the "interrelatedness of ethos and logos" (178). Further, he identifies implications for management as well as academic implications, suggesting that the implication of this model, including further research and reforming communication methods.
Zaber, Vesna and Brencic, Maja Makovec. "Values, trust, and commitment in business-to-business relationships"
This article was a response to previous research, which focused primarily on business-to-business marketing in "developed countries to the exclusion of international or cross-cultural comparisons in less developed nations" (Zaber and Brencic 202). Thus, the authors consider business-to-business relationships in former Soviet Bloc areas, Serbia and Croatia, which were Yigoslav markets. In considering the Eastern countries, the authors examined the variables of values, trust and relationship commitment on business-to-business relationships. The study both examined cross-cultural business relationships and "extends previous research, done mostly in developed counties, to two developing nations" (Zaber and Brencic 202). The authors identify values, trust, and commitment as important variables in business-to-business relationships because they assure progress as well as mutual success for both the buyers and the sellers, among other positive notions. In their research, the authors collected research from more than 400 companies in different industries in Serbia and Croatia using phone interviews using the "local language" (Zaber and Brencic 205). After examining the results of their study, the authors found that all societies have extreme components that influence business relationships, but that these components were greater when the countries were developing or had political "turmoil" (209). The authors also found differences among the studies of Croatia and Serbia regarding individualism, competitiveness, motivation, and values. In terms of communication, the authors found that the business relationships were mostly concerned fostered through face-to-face interactions, as well as personal connections and networking. Bribes, as well as formal and informal maintenance, were important in the different cultures. Thus, the authors concluded that culture directly influences managerial relationships. It is, therefore, important…