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SAIMS Conference 2017: Science serving practice.
13 October 2017
The 29th Annual Conference of the Southern African Institute for Management Scientists was held from 10 to 12 September 2017. The conference was hosted by the University of the Free State and took place at the Kopano Nokeng Country Lodge and Conference centre in Bloemfontein. The theme for this year’s conference was ‘Management research: Science serving practice’, which relates to the relevance of academic research and the academic-practitioner gap.
Below is a picture of the Marketing Management staff and doctoral student that attended this year’s SAIMS conference.
From right to left: Prof Pierre Mostert, Dr Tania Maree, Mr Munya Mutsikiwa (PhD student) and Prof Yolanda Jordaan
Three papers were presented by staff members of the Department of Marketing Management in UP’s Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. The first paper was titled ‘Does the third-person effect play a role in consumer information privacy perceptions and disclosure behaviour?’. This paper was presented by Prof Yolanda Jordaan, Head of the Department, and investigated the privacy paradox, which is a phenomenon that reports the disconnect between social media users’ concerns and their protective behaviour. This phenomenon was specifically tested through a third-person effect lens by focusing on perceived privacy concern, perceived privacy risk and perceived privacy invasion on Facebook. The findings from this study suggest that awareness of privacy issues may provide a platform on which marketers can base the development of fair information policies to alleviate privacy-related concerns and build trust with their users.
The second paper, presented by Prof Pierre Mostert, was titled ‘Establishing the antecedents of service brand avoidance’. This paper focused on the phenomenon of service brand avoidance, whereby consumers deliberately avoid or reject a service brand even though it is available and financially accessible. Previous qualitative research suggested five antecedents leading to brand avoidance, namely experiential avoidance, identity avoidance, moral avoidance, deficit-value avoidance and advertising avoidance.
However, these antecedents have not empirically been tested. Therefore this study aimed to broaden the current understanding of service brand avoidance by developing a valid and reliable measuring instrument to measure service brand avoidance together with the five antecedents thereof. The study thus developed a first quantitative measure of service brand avoidance and furthermore established that experiential avoidance, identity avoidance, moral avoidance and deficit-value avoidance predict service brand avoidance, whereas advertising avoidance does not.
Mr Munya Mutsikiwa presented a paper (co-authored by his PhD supervisor, Dr Tania Maree) titled ‘The influence of perceived brand personality of Facebook on users’ attitude, motivations, behavioural intent and behaviour’. A plethora of studies on Facebook focused on (among others) attitudes of users, the motives for use and users’ behaviour. However, none could be found that assessed the perceived brand personality in association with these constructs. This study aimed to examine the underlying structure of Aaker’s Brand Personality Scale (BPS) in the context of Facebook, and tested a hypothesised model for the interrelationships between perceived brand personality and attitudes, motives, behavioural intent and behaviour. Although the findings did not conform precisely to the original structure of Aaker’s Brand Personality Scale, the results suggested that the Brand Personality Scale has applicability within a social media context. The findings also illustrate Facebook as an exciting and sincere brand, which are traits that potential users may find attractive.
The 29th SAIMS Conference provided a great platform for all scholars to participate in the important discussion around academic relevance and a way to address the ever-widening gap between academia and practice. All the Department of Marketing Management staff members who attended this year’s SAIMS conference commented that it was a valued opportunity to network with and learn from fellow scholars within the management field. 
- Author Marketing Management
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Last edited by Liesl OosthuizenEdit
Prof Pierre Mostert, Dr Tania Maree, Mr Munya Mutsikiwa (PhD student) and Prof Yolanda Jordaan