Two sides to attitudinal commitment: the effect of calculative and loyalty commitment on enforcement mechanism in distribution channels

David I. Gilliland, Daniel C. Bello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Previous conceptualizations of attitudinal commitment are extended by considering two very different components of a manufacturer’s attachment to an independent channel intermediary. Relying on commitment theory, a model is developed that describes how attitudinal commitment may reside in either the instrumental or the social strain of a manufacturer’s relationship with its distributor. For each strain, the developmental role played by key facets of the channel setting—relative dependence, pledges, and trust—are shown. Furthermore, the nature of the attachment bond is posited to motivate very different governance mechanisms as the distribution agreement is enforced by either social or contractual means. Empirical support for the model demonstrates that an expanded view of attitudinal commitment is important in understanding the complex nature of attachment in channel relationships.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-43
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of the Academy of Marketing Science
Volume30
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2002

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Loyalty
Distribution channels
Enforcement
Distributor
Channel relationships
Conceptualization
Intermediaries
Governance mechanisms

Keywords

  • attitudinal commitment
  • manufacturer
  • independent channel intermediary
  • distributor
  • developmental role

Cite this

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AB - Previous conceptualizations of attitudinal commitment are extended by considering two very different components of a manufacturer’s attachment to an independent channel intermediary. Relying on commitment theory, a model is developed that describes how attitudinal commitment may reside in either the instrumental or the social strain of a manufacturer’s relationship with its distributor. For each strain, the developmental role played by key facets of the channel setting—relative dependence, pledges, and trust—are shown. Furthermore, the nature of the attachment bond is posited to motivate very different governance mechanisms as the distribution agreement is enforced by either social or contractual means. Empirical support for the model demonstrates that an expanded view of attitudinal commitment is important in understanding the complex nature of attachment in channel relationships.

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