Research Seminars

Valuing Non-Contractual Firms Using Common Customer Metrics

Marketing

Speaker: Daniel McCarthy
Ph.D. candidate in the Statistics Department , Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania

3 March 2017 - Room T04 - From 10:30 am to 12:00 pm


Valuing Non-Contractual Firms Using Common Customer Metrics

There is growing interest in the notion of “customer-based corporate valuation,” explicitly tying the value of a firm's customers to the firm's overall financial valuation. While much progress has been made in building a well-validated customer-based valuation model for contractual (or subscription-based) firms, there has been less progress for non-contractual firms (e.g., retail, travel/hospitality, and mobile gaming). Non-contractual businesses have more complex transactional patterns than contractual ones for a variety of reasons, including (1) they are characterized by latent attrition instead of observable churn behavior, (2) they often have irregular purchase incidence timing and spend amounts. These factors make it harder to reconstruct granular purchase behaviors from aggregate data, and to understand what metrics would serve as the best inputs for such a model. Despite this lack of guidance, a number of non-contractual firms regularly report a variety of different aggregate measures to their shareholders (e.g., the number of active users). We use a novel methodology based upon “indirect inference,” a well-established generalization of generalized method-of-moments procedures, to draw a connection between these common aggregate metrics and the underlying parameters of latent variable models for repeat purchasing. We show how the overall predictive validity of the models varies as a function of the combination of metrics used to train the models; this allows us to better understand both how many and which metrics are needed to achieve adequate predictions of future revenues. We apply this methodology to quarterly data from the largest subsidiary of an e-commerce retailer, valuing the subsidiary as a whole, decomposing this valuation into existing and yet-to-be-acquired customers, and analyzing the profitability of newly-acquired customers.

To Look Like a King or Feel Like a King? Power and the Desire for Experiential vs. Material Luxury

Marketing

Speaker: David DUBOIS
Assistant Professor of Marketing , INSEAD

26 January 2017 - Room T030 - From 10:30 am to 12:00 pm


To Look Like a King or Feel Like a King? Power and the Desire for Experiential vs. Material Luxury

By David DUBOIS

This work proposes that power shifts consumers’ desire for different types of luxury options (i.e., experiential vs. material luxury) due to a change in sensitivity to the kind of benefit consumers expect a luxury option to deliver (i.e., the experience or appearance of status). Specifically, building on findings that high power activates a propensity for agency and performance, we posit that high power increases consumers’ sensitivity to status experience. In contrast, because low power activates a propensity for communion and visibility, we posit that low power increases consumers’ sensitivity to status appearance. As a result, we hypothesize that high power triggers a desire for experiential luxury (but not material luxury), and that low power triggers a desire for material luxury (but not experiential luxury). Six studies provide converging evidence for the effect across online, lab and field settings using multiple power manipulations and measures. They also show that the effect is muted when consumption options are nonluxury, and unexplained by differences in feelings of financial deprivation, expected feelings of uniqueness, or options’ perceived riskiness or longevity. Finally, a causal chain design and a mediation provide evidence for the underlying shift in sensitivity to status experience vs. appearance.


Affective Boundaries of Scope Insensitivity

Marketing

Speaker: Hannah H. Chang
Assistant Professor of Marketing , Singapore Management University

25 October 2016 - Room T015 - From 10:30 am to 12:00 pm


Affective Boundaries of Scope Insensitivity

Hannah H. CHANG
Singapore Management University

Abstract: When making valuation judgments, people can be surprisingly insensitive to the quantity of the objects in question—a phenomenon called scope insensitivity that is generally attributed to the operation of affective processes in judgment. Building on recent research showing that affect is inherently a decision-making system of the present, we propose that scope insensitivity is more likely to be observed in decisions that are psychologically proximate to the immediate self. Consistent with this proposition, results from seven experiments show that scope insensitivity is more likely in decisions that are temporally proximate, both prospectively (near future vs. distant future) and retrospectively (recent past vs. distant past), and in decisions that are psychologically proximate in terms of social or physical distance. These findings clarify the boundaries of the scope-insensitivity phenomenon and refine our understanding of the affective system of judgment. The findings suggest that, rather than just a decision-making system of the present, the affective system is more broadly a decision-making system of the immediate self. Any form of distance from the immediate self (in time, social relation, or physical space) tends to attenuate the engagement of the affective system.

Passing the Buck to the Wealthier

Marketing

Speaker: Jonathan Berman
Assistant Professor of Marketing , London Business School

5 October 2016 - Room T025 - From 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm


Passing the Buck to the Wealthier

How much do consumers believe that they and others should donate to charity? We find that judgments of donation obligations are referent-dependent, and are determined by people’s own earnings. This reference-dependence holds across income levels and is driven in part by overestimating the relationship between income and spare money. Individuals expect that richer others have more spare money—and thereby should donate more to charity—than what those richer others evaluate for themselves. As a result, consumers pass donation obligations onto wealthier others, who in turn pass obligations on to even wealthier others.

Playing to Learn and Learning to Play: Effects of SuperstarApp Adoption on Enhancements to Mobile App Proficiency

Marketing

Speaker: Sungho Park
Assistant Professor of Marketing , Arizona State University

6 June 2016 - Building T, Room T030 - From 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm


Despite the massive influx of mobile apps into the market, mobile users substantially differ with respect to their mobile app proficiency, i.e., the advent of mobile digital inequality. Using a dataset on individual mobile app usage, we examine the potential of highly ranked “superstar apps” as stimulants of consumption in terms of volume and extent, especially among less mobile-proficient users. We employ the Gaussian copula-based difference-in-differences framework given that it allows us to construct a flexible joint model of continuous app usage duration and discrete number of apps used. Results indicate that superstar adoption boosts app use variety and volume within the same app category and across different categories. Such spillover effects are more pronounced among less technically knowledgeable groups (e.g., users in their 50s or older and late adopters) and managerially under-represented target segments (e.g., irregular, occasional, and light app users). Use frequency and duration among superstar app adopters increase for newly downloaded apps but decrease for existing apps. We provide valuable implications that marketers can capitalize on to target low-proficiency users. We also recommend that policy makers can use superstar apps as nonintrusive and cost-efficient vehicles for enhancing mobile app proficiency and bridging the mobile digital inequality.