Consumer Interests and the Ethical Implications of Marketing: A Contingency Framework

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Journal of Consumer Affairs, ISSN: 0022-0078, Vol: 37, Issue: 2, Page: 364-387

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CUI, Geng; CHOUDHURY, Pravat
Wiley-Blackwell; Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
Social Sciences; Economics, Econometrics and Finance; Marketing
article description
The increasing efforts by marketers to target diverse groups of consumers call for a closer examination of the ethical implications of market segmentation and differentiated marketing. Previous research suggests that marketers and consumers often differ in their perceptions of marketing ethics. Based on contingency theory, this research proposes an integrated framework-which includes the nature of the product, consumer characteristics, and market selection - to analyze the ethical complexities of the marketing exchange. Interactions among these factors lead to various contingencies with different ethical implications for marketing managers and public policy makers. Marketers should assess consumer interests and the ethics of marketing programs before their implementation.