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    Scale development for the inter-firm market orientation concept

    Francescucci, A, Henneberg, SC and Naude, P (2018) Scale development for the inter-firm market orientation concept. Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing, 33 (3). pp. 253-264. ISSN 0885-8624

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    Purpose: The objective of this paper is to develop and validate a scale for inter-firm market orientation (IMO) based on an original conceptualization by Elg (2008). Building on the MARKOR scale development work, the inter-firm market orientation (IMO) scale is introduced in order to better understand the market orientation efforts that occur within business relationships. Design/methodology/approach: After establishing a conceptualization of IMO, an initial list of scale items was developed by adapting the original MARKOR scale. Several phases of qualitative pre-tests were conducted with both academic experts and several manufacturer and reseller partner executives in order to assess the applicability and clarity of the instrument. Using a quantitative survey design, the survey instrument was validated with relationship partner managers in a combination of both manufacturer and reseller companies. Findings: The results of the analysis reveal that IMO is a second-order formative construct consisting of two first-order reflective constructs labelled joint intelligence cooperation and joint customer responsiveness. Practical implications: The operationalization of IMO suggests to manufacturers and their partners that the market intelligence cooperation efforts between them should be more focused on intelligence about the end-users, and less on the general market trends. Furthermore, the customer responsiveness efforts between the partners tend to be more reactive in nature, unlike the proactive stance in intra-firm market orientation. 2 Originality/value: The paper extends the notion of focal firm market orientation to IMO, which exists between partners in business relationships, and does so by developing a conceptualization and measurement items for IMO. This newly developed construct and scale can be used in future research to explore in greater depth the interplay between IMO and firm performance.

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