Language divergence in service encounters: Revisiting its influence on word-of-mouth

M. S. Balaji, Sanjit Kumar Roy, Walfried M. Lassar

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Research on language accommodation highlights the significance of accommodating customers' language requirements during service encounters. This replication study reinvestigates whether language divergence influences word-of-mouth intentions in a continuously-provided service of retail banking. Specifically, this study examines the relationships among language divergence, interaction quality, relationship quality, and positive word-of-mouth intentions. Consistent with previous research, study findings show that customers served in their second language perceive interactions with a service provider to be less responsive, adversely affecting positive word-of-mouth intentions. Additionally, language divergence has a negative influence on customer perception of information quality and empathy with a service provider, which affects the quality of the relationship customers have with the service provider. These results extend the understanding of the process by which language divergence affects positive word-of-mouth intentions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)210-213
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Business Research
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2017


  • Communication
  • Interaction quality
  • Language divergence
  • Relationship quality
  • Responsiveness
  • Word-of-mouth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Marketing


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