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Using Agency Theory in Understanding Switching Behavior in B2B Service Industries “I”


  • Ehab M. Abou Aish

    () (Faculty of Management Technology, The German University in Cairo)

  • Wael A. Kortam

    (Cairo University, Cairo - Egypt)

  • Salah S. Hassan

    (George Washington University, USA)


Understanding switching behavior is a cornerstone in sustaining customer led marketing efforts especially in services which depend on long-term relationships with the customers and where the switching process is compound and costly for both the customer and the service provider. The issue of understanding the motives and barriers behind agency-brand switching behavior still needs further conceptual support and empirical investigation in service industries context, where the emphasis placed on investigating the actual switching motives without trying to conceptualize the issue, which if done will result in better understanding for the whole switching process. In this paper, the authors attempt to bridge this gap in the literature by examining the criterion validity of the switching behavior model using the agency theory, as the relation between the business company (principle) and an Advertising agency (the agent) could be described as agency relationship. Furthermore, this approach helps in supporting the efforts for retaining the business-to-business customers, strengthening the relationship with them, developing and adopting globally integrated customer led strategies in different countries, a trend which is expected to dominate the marketing field in the future due to the increasing role of the agency brand selection and switching in today’s world markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Ehab M. Abou Aish & Wael A. Kortam & Salah S. Hassan, 2008. "Using Agency Theory in Understanding Switching Behavior in B2B Service Industries “I”," Working Papers 6, The German University in Cairo, Faculty of Management Technology.
  • Handle: RePEc:guc:wpaper:6

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Armstrong, Peter, 1991. "Contradiction and social dynamics in the capitalist agency relationship," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 1-25.
    2. Hunt, Herbert III & Hogler, Raymond L., 1990. "Agency theory as ideology: A comparative analysis based on critical legal theory and radical accounting," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 15(5), pages 437-454.
    3. Barry Mitnick, 1975. "The theory of agency," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 24(1), pages 27-42, December.
    4. Minkler, Alanson P, 1993. "The Problem with Dispersed Knowledge: Firms in Theory and Practice," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(4), pages 569-587.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Brand switching; agency theory; business to business marketing; service marketing; international advertising research;

    JEL classification:

    • M31 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Marketing
    • M37 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Advertising
    • L82 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Entertainment; Media

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