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David M. Szymanski, Chair of Retailing Studies, Research Fellow, Director of the Center for Retailing Studies and the Al and Marion Withers Research Fellow Mays College & Graduate School of Business,
Michael Kroff, Doctoral Student, Department of Marketing Texas A&M University,
Lisa C. Troy, Assistant Professor of Marketing University of North Texas
The field of product innovation has expanded rapidly, and insights regarding the relationship between product innovativeness and new product performance have become clouded, as findings are increasingly mixed. To address this issue and add clarity, the authors quantitatively analyze the extant product innovativeness–new product performance findings. They find that while the resulting relationship between innovativeness and performance is small on average, it lacks generalizability because of a number of measurement (e.g. definition of newness and nature of performance data) and contextual factors (e.g. goods versus services) that moderate the magnitude of the product innovativeness effect found. They subsequently discover that the magnitude of the relationship also has diminished over time as competitive conditions have unarguably intensified. The authors explore the implications of these findings and the revised contingency perspective for academic research and business practice.
As a research base expands, it becomes critical to take stock of extant findings to ensure that previous conclusions and perspectives remain valid and to further ensure that the proper approach to research is being pursued. This assessment becomes even more critical when an area is relevant to practitioners and is attracting a growing number of researchers. Such is the case with the literature focusing on the role of product innovativeness in the marketplace performance of new product offerings.
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