Good for science, but which implications for business? An analysis of the managerial implications in high-impact B2B marketing articles published between 2003 and 2012

Antonella La Rocca, Enrico Baraldi, Andrea Perna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose – This article aims to analyze a set of features in the managerial implications of the most-cited business-to-business (B2B) marketing articles which are related to their managerial relevance. The purpose is to further identify which are the most recurrent features of managerial implications, as well as the connections between such features. Finally, the articles aim to verify if these features of managerial implications vary depending on the scientific impact of the article. Design/methodology/approach – The 60 most-cited articles were selected from both generalist and specialized academic journals and a content analysis was conducted. Then the article assesses the formal features (e.g. dedicated space), the language (e.g. consulting or normative), the translation of scientific results (e.g. message efficacy) and such other features as time orientation, specificity and abstraction of the managerial implications in these high-impact articles. The article also analyses patterns and associations between the aforementioned dimensions across the 60 articles, also depending on their level of scientific impact (i.e. their number of citations). Findings – The results point that six out of nine features contributing to managerial relevance are the most frequently present in the implications (dedicated section easy to find, balance between academic and consulting language, partly scientific approach, overlap with scientific findings, message neither too complicated nor too simplistic, and long-term orientation). However, three other features reducing managerial relevance afflict nearly half of the articles: non-normative, generic and abstract implications. The ten articles lacking completely managerial implications are slightly more frequent among highest impact ones, which also often include overly complicated implications; while speculative and overly simplistic implications typically appear more among lowest impact articles which, however, also stand for very specific messages. There seems not to be any statistical correlation between the features contributing to managerial relevance and the scientific impact (number of citations) of an article. Instead, several of these features are correlated among each other, meaning that when one is missing, it is likely that the others also are. Finally, when implications are included in a dedicated section of the article, they tend to be specific and consequently also tend to have the other features favoring relevance. Originality/value – The article provides an empirically grounded assessment of features that influence the managerial relevance of scientific research in the areas of B2B marketing. Our results are, in fact, grounded in a detailed examination of the managerial implications of 60 high-impact articles in this disciplinary domain.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)574-592
Number of pages19
JournalTHE JOURNAL OF BUSINESS & INDUSTRIAL MARKETING
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Keywords

  • Content analysis, B2B marketing, Managerial implications, Managerial relevance, Scientific impact

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