The paper “ Dimensions Of Customer Loyalty - Separating Friends From Well Wishers by Baloglu” is a meaty example of an article on marketing. Seamus Baloglu holds the position of associate professor at William F. Harrah College of Hotel Administration at the University Of Nevada. The purpose of this research is to determine the nature of loyalty demonstrated by frequent buyers. This seeks to determine whether loyalty program members are loyal to the company or only appear loyal as they aim to take advantage of the premiums and benefits offered.
The research questions addressed are the distinction between true loyalty of customers and the appearance of loyalty, and the consequences of different kinds of loyalty. It addresses the two major types of loyalty; behavioral and attitudinal loyalty to identify the truly loyal customers hence devise strategies to focus on the rather than waste resources on those who demonstrate behavioral loyalty (Baloglu 2002 p. 47). The article analyses behavioral and attitudinal loyalty in order to distinguish between the two and identify the associated antecedents and consequences. SummaryThe study made use of both quantitative and quantitative methods of data analysis and used a questionnaire as the data collection instrument.
The data analysis involved the use of SPSS Version 10.0 indiscriminate analysis, cluster analysis, and multivariate analysis of variance. It used a proportion of visit measures calculated as a ration of a number of visits made to the casino to which customers feel loyal to the number of visits spent in casinos in general. This measures the purchase frequency of one brand in relation to the others within a similar product category. This helps identify the level of repeat patronage of one brand in comparison to other brands hence enable ranking in relation to behavioral loyalty.
Qualitative measures distinguished loyalty related intentions of players at the casino to eliminate the significance of time spent at the casino not playing any game. This emerged from the number of positive recommendations uttered by customers indicating their level of cooperation. The measure of attitudinal loyalty, on the other hand, uses qualitative measures of commitment or emotional attachment, switching cost, and trust (Baloglu 2002 p. 53). The commitment-trust theory assists in the examination correlation between commitment and trust.
The researcher used cooperation and word-of-mouth to measure behavioral outcomes. The cluster analysis involved the segmentation of the respondents according to attitudinal and behavioral loyalty and clusters1 demonstrated characteristics of truly loyal customers (Cahill 2006 p. 43). Cluster2 had characteristics of the appearance of loyalty by exhibiting high behavioral loyalty characteristics and low attitudinal loyalty. Cluster3, on the other hand, had low loyalty characteristics with low attitudinal and behavioral loyalty. The population in the study involves slot club members created by the sponsors of the research with a selected sample of 1500 attendants of the casino in three months prior to the study.
The study area was Las Vegas with respondents derived from the area to show their attendance patterns of the casino (Baloglu 2002 p. 51). Findings The results indicated that the majority of the population were female above 55 years, retired, married and college degree holders. They frequented the casino for pleasure, entertainment, and monetary gain. Their favorite games involved machines like video poker and quarter slot machine. The truly loyal customers indicated an attendance of 89% while spuriously loyal customers had an attendance of 95% and low loyalty customers 48%.
Both the truly and spuriously loyal customers indicated a similar weekly attendance at the casino of 2.9 and 3.0 visits respectively and the low loyalty customers also indicated a low attendance rate of 1.8. The truly loyal customers spent more hours per visit than the other groups at 4.4 hours, spuriously loyal ones spent 3.0 hours while the low loyalty customers spent the least hours of 2.9 hours (Baloglu 2002 p. 55). The antecedents involved the measurement in relation to switching costs with those of truly loyal customers at 5.6, spuriously loyal at 4.4 and low loyal customers at 3.4.
Truly loyal customers had a positive image of the casino and an overall positive experience. In analyzing the consequences of loyalty, truly loyal individuals had a 6.4 likelihood of spreading positive word of mouth information while spuriously loyal and low loyalty had scores of 4.6 and 4.4 respectively. Truly loyal customers have a high level of cooperation than the other groups at 5.8 while the others have a likelihood of 3.9 and 3.5 respectively.
Truly loyal customers are less likely to look for alternative casinos and spend more on the buffet, gift shops, steak restaurants, coffee shops, and special events than the other groups. Truly loyal customers were 55 years and above and more likely to play on slot machines in comparison to others. Both spuriously and truly loyal customers demonstrated high behavioral loyalty but truly loyal ones exhibited both behavioral and attitudinal (Hayes 2008 p. 69). They also spent more money on the casino’ s products and more time during their numerous visits.