Putting marketing knowledge to use: marketing-specific relational capital and product/service innovation performance
Peñalba-Aguirrezabalaga, Carmela; Ritala, Paavo; Saenz, Josune (2021-06-04)
Post-print / Final draft
Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing
School of Business and Management
The importance of integrating both internal and external knowledge into the product/service innovation process has been widely recognized in the knowledge management and innovation literature. Likewise, the role of the marketing and sales function as a driver of innovation has been stressed because of its market-facing role. However, limited research has investigated the complementarity of both internal and external knowledge regarding product/service innovation performance in a marketing context. The purpose of this study is to analyze marketing departments’ role in accessing internal and external knowledge resources (i.e. marketing-specific relational capital [RC]) to reach improved product and service innovation performance.
The analysis uses empirical evidence collected by a structured survey of 346 respondents representing marketing and sales functions in Spanish companies.
The survey revealed that marketing-specific internal relational capital at the department and inter-department levels, as well as noncustomer external RC, are directly associated with product/service innovation performance. Further, the analyses show that the relationship between customer-specific RC and innovation performance is mediated by other types of RC, making it a fundamental antecedent to the innovation process. Finally, significant differences in marketing-specific RC subcomponents were found between business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) firms.
This study makes a valuable contribution to marketing and management literature by revealing the types of social interactions in the marketing function that enable access to knowledge sources that promote successful product/service innovation.
Peñalba-Aguirrezabalaga, C., Ritala, P., Saenz, J. (2021). Putting marketing knowledge to use: marketing-specific relational capital and product/service innovation performance. Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing. DOI: 10.1108/JBIM-07-2020-0369
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