Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Advertising, personal selling, and sales promotion have been the primary communication approaches used in marketing. However, these tested and proved methods of reaching customers have recently been coming under increasing cost pressures. Of foremost importance to industrial marketers, rising fuel costs and salary costs have increased substantially the cost of the personal sales call.;Managers are increasingly turning to new approaches such as telemarketing and demonstration centres as adjuncts to the more traditional communications approaches. There is little experience in industrial marketing practice that managers can draw upon when designing communication programs incorporating the new adjunct approaches. There is also little in the marketing literature. This study investigates the effective use of telemarketing and demonstration centres in tandem with field sales and direct mail advertising for the purpose of new account development.;The theoretical communications approach taken in this study is a behavioral influence one as opposed to a traditional persuasion approach. Two experiments in an actual industrial marketing field setting were carried out to determine the relative effectiveness of alternative telemarketing program communication strategies. The organization in which the study was carried out markets telecommunications products and the study sample exposed to the communications strategies consisted of potential customers--general managers and marketing managers representing industrial firms in the wholesale trade sector.;The study found that the behavioral influence strategy known as the Foot-in-the-Door (FITD) strategy obtained a higher rate of compliance with a critical request for attendance at a sales seminar with an FITD treatment consisting of a telephoned request to accept sales literature in the mail. The FITD effect was found at the behavioural intentions level (enrollment), as well as at the actual behavioural level (attendance). Mixed evidence was found with regard to the sustainability of the effect into other dependent measures of interest to managers. The FITD effect was not found when the FITD treatment was a request to answer three short market research questions over the telephone.;The thesis is concluded with a discussion of the implications of the findings for both behavioural influence-based marketing research and for industrial marketing managers.
Vredenburg, Harrie, "Improving Industrial Sales Productivity: A Field Experimental Study Of A Telemarketing And Demonstration Centre Application Of Behavioural Influence Strategy" (1986). Digitized Theses. 1568.