Category: News, News Digital Transformation, News Marketing Management, Research News, News Doctoral Program, News Startseite 05/16/2017

Making a Purchase Decision: How Effective Are Online Communication Methods?

From a corporate point of view, a potential customer goes on somewhat of a journey, passing through various points of contact with a product, a brand or the company itself, before buying a certain product. For the online sphere, these points of contact include the company's website, social media channels, e-mail marketing, online PR and others.

The question of the impact of the various communication channels against the background of an effective use of online communication procedures, which are in line with the budget, arises in connection with customer online journeys, especially regarding online marketing practices. Dr. Alexander Kolano examined this issue in his dissertation which he completed under the tutelage of Prof. Dr. Manfred Kirchgeorg at the SVI-Endowed Chair of Marketing, esp. E-Commerce and Cross-Media Management at HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management. He segmented the substantial number of cases to present the enormous amounts of data on customer journeys and analyzing the cross-channel effects. For this purpose, he used so-named binary logit choice models to examine consumer decisions while studying customer online journeys.

Behavioral research, decision-oriented and systems theory approaches from communication politics and consumer behavior research were combined as well as translated and applied to the online sphere to find explanations. This led to conclusions on the decision-making processes of the consumer organism.  

Contact frequency influences purchase probability

As a part of his examination, Dr. Kolano was able to prove that the classic approaches to analyze the communication effects and success, such as, for instance, a differentiation between pull and push communication, can also be applied to online communication. He also found that the contact frequency has a major influence on the purchase probability, which partially justifies investments made in peripheral procedures that do not directly lead to a purchase. Moreover, the initiation of contact significantly affects the effectiveness of the measures. If the consumers decide on their own to use a company's communication offer, it significantly increases the purchase probability. Says Dr. Kolano, "It is a reflection of the consumer's active role regarding the effect and success of online communication procedures."

The book "Effektivität in der Online-Kommunikation – Eine Untersuchung von Customer-Online-Journeys", issued by Springer Fachmedien publishing house, addresses lecturers and students of business administration with a focus on marketing and online communication but also marketing department representatives as well as service providers and agencies from the fields of marketing, and, more specifically, communication.


Kolano, Alexander

Effektivität in der Online-Kommunikation – Eine Untersuchung von Customer-Online-Journeys

Publishing house: Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden GmbH

2017, 196 pages

ISBN: 978-3-658-17567-2 (printed version)

Available as a paperback and e-book.


The Doctoral Program of HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management

With 87 participants currently and 221 graduates so far, HHL's doctoral program has been growing steadily since it was launched in 1996. The well-structured program, which consists of weekend seminars, colloquia and summer courses, allows its participants to complete it while on the job. The majority of candidates hold a job and every third one works as a Research Assistant at HHL.

HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management

HHL is a university-level institution and ranks amongst the leading international business schools. The goal of the oldest business school in German-speaking Europe is to educate effective, responsible and entrepreneurially-minded leaders. HHL stands out for its excellent teaching, its clear research focus, its effective knowledge transfer into practice as well as its outstanding student services. The courses of study include full and part-time Master in Management as well as MBA programs, a Doctoral program and Executive Education. HHL is accredited by AACSB International.



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