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THE IMPACT OF INTERNAL MARKETING EFFORTS IN DISTRIBUTION SERVICE OPERATIONS

S. Keller, D. Lynch, Alexander E. Ellinger, J. Ozment, R. Calantone
Published 2006 · Business

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Frontline employees can have an important impact on the quality of products and services delivered by a firm since they are often in direct contact with external customers or are the last people to handle the customer's product and information before delivery. Marketing efforts can offer firms a greater competitive advantage by overtly stimulating the impact of frontline logistics employees on customer value creation. In such a situation, internal marketing is a good strategy in both service and product support contexts. This paper introduces a broad marketing mix framework that shifts the application from marketing products to marketing the workplace to logistics distribution employees. Research findings support a multidimensional operationalization of internal marketing. Holistic tests indicate that internal marketing on an interpersonal level is associated with satisfied and higher performing distribution center employees and increased interdepartmental customer orientation. Theoretical and managerial implications and directions for future research are discussed.



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