Brand Reputation: Does it Help Customers Cope with Service Failure?

Aditi Sarkar, Balaji C. Krishnan, Makam S. Balaji

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedingBook Chapterpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


When service failure occurs, customers experience disconfirmation and feel displeased (Smith, Bolton and Wagner, 1999). Prior studies indicate that customers maintain different levels of service expectations for high and low reputed brands (Roggeveen, Bharadwaj, and Hoyer. 2007). For high reputed brands, customers have high expectations, and view them as delivering superior services. The brand name acts as a predictive cue enabling customers to anticipate more accurately the service delivery process and outcome (Selnes, 1998). Research findings have confirmed that customers positively relate to brand reputation affecting the perceptions of service performance and benefits (Brodie, Whittome and Brush, 2009). Customers evaluate the characteristics of the service failure and assess the perceived stress in the given situation (Lazarus and Folkman, 1984; Gabbott, Tsarenko and Mok, 2011). This appraisal process influences the use of different coping strategies in managing the negative emotions. The stress encountered is contingent upon the expectations one has from the service provider. This indicates that customers might use different coping strategies depending upon the expectation associated with the brand that fails to serve appropriately. However, there is little systematic research on the linkages between brand reputation, customer coping strategies and failure outcomes. The primary goal of this study is to conceptualize the different coping strategies that customers use in managing service failures and to determine the role of brand reputation in determining the coping strategies and service failure outcomes. The current study uses expectancy-disconfirmation and uncertainty management theory to build the conceptual model of customers coping strategy to deal with the service failure. More specifically, the present study highlights the presence of “buffering effect” of brand reputation following the service failure. This study uses coping mechanism to propose that brand reputation reduces the negative effects of failure severity on customer satisfaction. Finally, the study proposes that coping mediates the relationship between failure severity and customer satisfaction.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDevelopments in Marketing Science
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the Academy of Marketing Science
PublisherSpringer Nature
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameDevelopments in Marketing Science: Proceedings of the Academy of Marketing Science
ISSN (Print)2363-6165
ISSN (Electronic)2363-6173


  • Brand Equity
  • Coping Strategy
  • Customer Satisfaction
  • Service Encounter
  • Service Failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Marketing
  • Strategy and Management


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