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Title: An investigation into factor influencing the use of supermarket loyalty card data amongst small agri-food companies
Author: Ihua, Ugwushi Bellema
Awarding Body: University of Kent
Current Institution: University of Kent
Date of Award: 2011
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The research on which this thesis is based sought to provide new insights into the use of supermarket loyalty card data (SLCD) amongst small agri-food companies; with respect to the factors influencing their use of formalised market information. Given the lack of research in this area and on the key constructs (barriers and enablers) upon which this thesis is focussed, a casestudy approach was adopted. Data was collected in two phases, and it comprised of thirteen in-depth semi-structured interviews for the 1 st phase and two in-depth case studies for the 2nd phase. The qualitative data generated was analysed using thematic analysis. The thesis investigated four interrelated groups of factors influencing the use of supermarket loyalty card data - organisational, individual-related, informational and relationship factors. The results revealed that, amongst the four groups of factors investigated, the individual-related factors seemed to exhibit more influence on the use of the data amongst the small food companies investigated. Components of this group include: education, economic history, administrative familiarity, information- seeking personality and decision-making rationality of the owner-managers; as well as their involvement of staff, desire for growth and networking ability. In summary, whilst the existing body of knowledge suggests that small businesses tend to rely more on informal sources of information, this thesis has provided some evidence to suggest that there are some small businesses making use of formalised market information, and in a structured manner, to enhance their marketing decisions. And those small businesses seemed to perform better than their counterparts who did not avail themselves of such forms of market information. Also, whilst the study provided some evidence of the existence of instrumental, conceptual and selective (as opposed to symbolic) use of SLCD amongst small businesses, it also unearthed the concept of "emblematic use" of market information. This refers to the positive image and credibility gained by some of the small agri- food companies on account of merely possessing supermarket loyalty card data. In this situation, market information is used merely as an emblem, and this dimension has not been previously investigated in the literature.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available