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Customer Clubs In A Relationship Perspective: A Telecom Case

A. Gustafsson, I. Roos, B. Edvardsson
Published 2004 · Business

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Companies in the telecom industry – and in many other consumer markets – have introduced customer or loyalty clubs over a number of years. Customer clubs have been used as a loyalty‐building measure following the deregulation of telecom markets in Europe. They were introduced as a strategic instrument intended to foster customer retention and to contribute to increased sales and profitability. These clubs are the most recognizable part of many CRM strategies. Their short‐ and long‐term effects on loyalty are not obvious, however. The aim of this article is to explore the effects of the customer club on customer relationships in telecommunications by presenting results from two qualitative studies, which are quantified and reported in terms of responses to the club. The results of this empirical study in a Swedish telecom company reveal that the majority of customer‐club members do not perceive their membership as adding value or contributing to higher commitment and improved loyalty. Nevertheless, there are differences between non‐members and members regarding their perceptions of the service provider. The target group of club members has significantly higher satisfaction with the company than the non‐member customers.
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