Service Brand Relationship Quality: Hot or Cold?

Nyffenegger, Bettina; Krohmer, Harley; Hoyer, Wayne D.; Malär, Lucia (2015). Service Brand Relationship Quality: Hot or Cold? Journal of Service Research, 18(1), pp. 90-106. Sage 10.1177/1094670514547580

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Customers’ long-term brand relations are crucial drivers of a service brand’s sustainable competitive advantage. This research empirically examines the quality of customer-service brand relationships in the context of an airline’s frequent flyer program. The authors show that service brand relationship quality (BRQ) involves both a hot (based on emotions) and a cold (based on objectrelevant beliefs) component. They find that these two components have different implications for a service brand’s performance and are at least partially driven by different antecedents whose relative importance changes over time. Specifically, cold BRQ is important for word-of-mouth behavior and is strongly driven by partner quality (i.e., the generalized assessment of the brand in its role as a relationship counterpart). Hot BRQ, on the other hand, has a stronger impact on willingness to pay a price premium and consideration set size. In early stages of a customer-brand relationship hot BRQ is more strongly driven by self-congruence (i.e., consumer’s perception of the fit between his/her self and the brand’s personality), in later stages partner quality becomes more relevant. The authors discuss the implications of their findings for the development of BRQ and the implementation of alternative growth strategies in a services context.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Department of Business Management > Institute of Innovation Management > Marketing

UniBE Contributor:

Nyffenegger, Bettina; Krohmer, Harley and Malär, Lucia


600 Technology > 650 Management & public relations








Daniela Herzog

Date Deposited:

19 May 2015 14:20

Last Modified:

15 Sep 2017 23:17

Publisher DOI:





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