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Title: Mitigating the negative effects of service failure through customer identification
Authors: Song, J
Huang, J
Jiang, Y 
Issue Date: 2021
Source: Psychology and marketing, 2021, Early view, p. 1-11,
Abstract: This study investigated the effect of numerical customer identification (i.e., assigning numbers to identify customers) in the service context on the numbered customers' reaction to service failures. We manipulated numerical identification in different ways (room number, customer number, table number, and order number) and measured customers' tolerance of services across various settings (in a restaurant, a spa, and a cafĂ©) in four studies. The results demonstrated that after being identified by a number, customers tend to exhibit a higher tolerance of service failures (Studies 1 and 2), and this effect is mediated by a sense of self-dehumanization among the numerically identified customers (Study 3). Moreover, the investigated effect diminished when customers had heightened individuation (e.g., by disclosing personal information) to buffer against dehumanization (Study 4). Our findings contribute to the underexplored research area on customer identification, broaden the numerical research and dehumanization literature in marketing, and bring practical implications for firms to mitigate the negative effects of service failures and decrease customer dissatisfaction.
Keywords: Customer identification
Numerical identification
Service failures
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
Journal: Psychology and marketing 
ISSN: 0742-6046
DOI: 10.1002/mar.21615
Appears in Collections:Journal/Magazine Article

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