Long-Run Effects of Promotion Depth on New Versus Established Customers: Three Field Studies

Eric T. Andersen*, Duncan I. Simester

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

112 Scopus citations

Abstract

We use the results of three large-scale field experiments to investigate how the depth of a current price promotion affects future purchasing of first-time and established customers. While most previous studies have focused on packaged goods sold in grocery stores, we consider durable goods sold through a direct mail catalog. The findings reveal different effects for first-time and established customers. Deeper price discounts in the current period increased future purchases by first-time customers (a positive long-run effect) but reduced future purchases by established customers (a negative long-run effect). Overall, the results show evidence of several long-run effects: forward buying, selection, customer learning, and increased deal sensitivity. Short run metrics that ignore these effects overstate the overall change in demand for established customers. The implication is that if prices are set based on short-run elasticity, then they will be too low. Among first-time customers, the short-run metrics underestimate the total increase in demand. If prices are set based on short-run elasticity, then they will be too high.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4-20+170
JournalMarketing Science
Volume23
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2004

Keywords

  • Catalogs
  • Deal sensitivity
  • Forward buying
  • Long-term effects
  • Price promotions
  • Pricing
  • Purchase acceleration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Marketing

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