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EMAC 2022 Annual

Organizing for Customer Analytics Excellence in Firms of Different Ages: Complementarity of Outside-in and Inside-out Resources

Published: May 24, 2022


Hamed Mehrabi, Kingston University; Abbas Keramati, Ryerson University; Yongjian (Ken) Chen, Trent University


Past research on drivers of customer analytics tends to focus on organizational factors that are considered inside-out. We extend the literature by examining the complementary role of outside-in resources and their boundary conditions. Building on marketing capabilities and resource complementarity theories, our model tests how customer orientation (an outside-in resource) complements data-driven culture (an inside-out resource) in developing customer analytics among firms of different ages. We find that customer orientation is not only positively related to customer analytics, but it also strengthens the effect of data-driven culture. A three-way interaction analysis further shows that the moderating effect of customer orientation is stronger among older firms. Overall, we highlight the importance of an outside-in approach to building customer analytics. In doing so, we also develop a theoretical framework of resource complementarity in marketing.