Relationship Marketing Theory: Marketing And Purchase Intention

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Relationship marketing theory states that brand is an important relational tool in a firm 's consumer relationship management. Relationship marketing refers “to all marketing activities directed towards establishing, developing, and maintaining successful relational exchanges” (Morgan and Hunt, 1994). Relationship marketing theory posits that consumer perceptions of the strength of the relationship (e.g., commitment) shape consumers ' behavior in that relationship (Hunt et al., 2006). The most frequent perception representing the strength of the relationship is affective commitment (Morgan and Hunt, 1994; Verhoef, 2003), which refers to the psychological attachment to the relationship partner and is associated on feelings of loyalty and…show more content…
Purchase Intention is defined as “predisposition to buy a certain brand or product” (Belch & Belch, 2004, p. 120). Purchase Intention also indicates how likely it is that the individual would purchase a product (Phelps & Hoy, 1996). Previous studies examine the relationship of attitude with purchase intentions in specific dimensions, such as attitude towards advertiser (Lutz et al., 1983), attitude towards advertisement and attitude towards brand (MacKenzie et al., 1986; MacKenzie & Lutz, 1989). The current study focuses on the concept of attitude toward brand. Attitude toward brand has profound and important role in affecting consumer’s purchase intentions (Gresham & Shimp, 1985; Goldsmith et al., 2000). Similarly, Batra and Ray (1986) suggest that attitude toward brand significantly affect intentions of consumers. Till and Busler (2000) investigate the source credibility (endorser) dimensions, such as expertise and likeability impact on attitude toward brand and purchase intentions of consumer and propose that both dimensions are positively associated with purchase intentions. Choi and Rifon (2002) argue that attitude toward brand and purchase intentions are positively associated with each other. Several studies in adult (Machleit & Wilson, 1988; Homer, 1990) and children samples (Phelps & Hoy, 1996) support that attitude toward brand has positive and significant effect on purchase intentions of consumers. In addition, previous research empirically investigates the…show more content…
As proposed in the previous sections, brand credibility has three components, trustworthiness, expertise and attractiveness. Relationship marketing theory suggests that trust leads to affective commitment (Morgan and Hunt, 1994). If consumers believe that the company can deliver on its promise of service or product quality (i.e., high trustworthiness), they tend to have higher affective commitment, since trust in a company justifies consumers ' positive feelings towards and reliance on the company (Erkmen and Hancer, 2015; Hunt et al., 2006).
H3. Brand credibility positively affects consumers ' affective commitment.
Relationship marketing theory suggests that affectively committed consumers believe they are connected to the company (Bolton et al., 2004; Morgan and Hunt, 1994). Such consumers want to continue their relationship because they like the company and enjoy the partnership (Verhoef et al., 2002), and are unlikely to buy from other companies (Evanschitzky et al., 2006; Verhoef,2003). Therefore, this paper proposes that affectively committed consumers are likely to purchase from the SMEs.
H4. Affective commitment positively affects a consumer 's purchase

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