Research in the area of business services, which include marketing research companies, advertising agencies and consulting firms, has concentrated on service quality, relationship quality, and overall customer satisfaction. In some of the best known models which connect these concepts, customer satisfaction is modelled as a function of customer expectations and perceived quality. Little research has been done, however, to explain the development of relationships between businesses and business services over time. Additionally, research in this area has been almost non-existent in the transition countries. Our study proposes a customer satisfaction model with an integrated time component to be tested on the transition country data. The relationship quality in our model is expected to be paramount for customer satisfaction, loyalty and the long-term success of business services.
1. Concepts of Customer Value, Customer Satisfaction, and Loyalty to Business Services (Advertising Agencies)
Customer satisfaction with business service can be defined with a customer's positive or negative feeling about the value of using a business service in a specific situation.
This feeling can be a reaction to an immediate use situation or an overall reaction to a series of use situation experiences (Woodruff, Gardial, 1996).
Satisfaction is therefore related to customer value. Customer value (or client's value) is a perception of what a customer wants to accomplish with a help of a service, in order to reach a desired goal. Woodruff et al. (1996) argue that customer value describes the nature of the relationship between the firm-customer and the service, while customer satisfaction represents a customer's reaction to the value received from the service.
Furthermore, value identifies which service dimensions are central for a firm-customer to reach desired goals and how these service dimensions are related to one another and to the firm. Satisfaction, however, captures the customer's response...