Conference paper Open Access

BIG DATA ANALYTICS USE IN CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT: ANTECEDENTS AND PERFORMANCE IMPLICATIONS

Suoniemi, Samppa; Meyer-Waarden, Lars; Munzel, Andreas

Customer information plays a key role in managing successful relationships with valuable customers. Big data analytics use (BD use), i.e., the extent to which customer information derived from big data analytics guides marketing decisions, helps firms better meet customer needs for competitive advantage. This study aims to (1) determine whether organizational BD use improves customer-centric and financial outcomes, and (2) identify the factors influencing BD use. Drawing primarily from market information use theory, we advance a model to explain how information quality (IQ), customer orientation and big data analytics culture predict BD use, which in turn influences customer relationship and financial performance.

Empirical findings from a survey of 301 senior marketing executives, representing large US-based firms in B2C industries, support our conceptualization of the performance outcomes and antecedents of BD use. All seven hypotheses received empirical support.

The results highlight that the characteristics of the customer information (IQ) and the characteristics of the user organization (customer orientation and big data analytics culture) strongly predict BD use. The findings also reveal the relative importance of different customer information characteristics to marketing decision-makers.

Practitioners may significantly improve firm performance with BD use, but only if certain antecedent factors facilitate BD use in the organization. We offer managers advice how to overcome challenges specific to BD use by managing the quality aspects of customer information, and by fostering shared customer-oriented and analytics-oriented cultures.

To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first to examine the role of big data analytics use in managing customer relationships. We hope that this contribution motivates more academic research to address the impact of big data on marketing and customer strategies.

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