We apply the three-part practice theoretical heuristic of objects, meanings, and doings to the world of avant-garde fashion to show how new styles emerge through continuous micro-processes. We draw from the online community of avant-garde fashion to demonstrate how
communities converge on particular objects, meanings, and doings. We articulate the ways that the introduction of new objects, meanings, and doings expands the boundaries of a taste regime. We also show how the stabilization of links between objects, meanings and doings results in uniformity-in their case, a material uniform of black and grey boots, gloves, and capes, wrapped and worn. Our work distinguishes between two types of taste regimes- ones that are emergent, in formation, and unsettled, versus ones that have achieved stability. The consumer performance work we highlight in the shaping of taste regimes also suggests that within institutional shifts there exists the force of consumer agency.
Reference: Dolbec, Pierre-Yann and Andre F. Maciel (2018), “In or Out? How Consumer Performances Lead to the Emergence of New Tastes,” Taste, Consumption, and Markets, edited by Zeynep Arsel and Jonathan Bean, Routledge, 95-112.
In this essay, we develop a typology of spaces. We highlight the broader dynamics at play in the structuring of space and its role in marketing and propose that spaces can be characterized as either public, market, emancipating, or segregating. These four types of space are structured along two main dynamics: a contradiction between contestation and consensus and a contrariety opposing participation to privatization. For each type, we map out existing literature and research opportunities in the study of consumption, markets, and space. We also analyze the possible transitions between the spatial types following the transformations in the arrangement of forces in society. We offer a template of how to devise novel research opportunities by providing a detailed account of the dynamics at the center of the transition from public to market spaces.
Keywords Consumption, marketization, markets, market space, production of space, public space, space
Reference: Castilhos, Rodrigo and Pierre-Yann Dolbec (2018), “Conceptualizing Spatial Types: Characteristics, Transitions, and Research Avenues,” Marketing Theory, 18 (2), 154-168. doi.org/10.1177/1470593117732455
Grounded in work on geography and markets, this article offers a conceptual framework to study the dynamics of markets through a spatial lens. The characteristics of four key spatial dimensions (place, territory, scale, and network) are explained and leveraged to provide distinct analytical vantage points and to conceptualize how various types of spaces matter differently in market dynamics. Findings from a qualitative meta-analysis identify 12 unique mechanisms tied to the four proposed spatial dimensions, which offer alternative theoretical avenues for unpacking market phenomena. These four spatial dimensions are then combined with 12 space-based mechanisms to offer novel research avenues for marketing scholars interested in market system dynamics.
Keywords Consumer culture theory, market systems, network, place, scale, space, territory
Reference: Castilhos, Rodrigo, Pierre-Yann Dolbec and Ela Veresiu (2017), “Introducing a Spatial Perspective to Analyze Market Dynamics,” Marketing Theory, 17 (1), 9-29. doi.org/10.1177/1470593116657915
We investigate the participation of engaged consumers in the fashion market through the lens of institutional theory. We develop theoretical insights on the unintended market-level changes that ensue when consumers who are avidly interested in a field connect to share ideas with one another. We find that consumers take on some of the institutional work previously done primarily by paid actors and introduce new forms of institutional work supportive of the field. We show that engaged consumers can precipitate the formation of new categories of actors in the field and the contestation of boundaries between established and emergent actor categories. Further, we propose that new consumer-focused institutional logics gain momentum, even while consumers support and promote preexisting logics through their practices. We compare cases where discontented market actors have brought about market changes with our investigation of one where contented consumers unintentionally precipitated market-level dynamics, and we show that the accumulation of consumers’ micro-level practices can have pervasive and profound impacts.
Keywords: Institutional theory, institutional change, market system dynamics, fashion, influencers, blogosphere
Reference: Dolbec, Pierre-Yann and Eileen Fischer (2015), “Re-fashioning a Field? Connected Consumers and Institutional Dynamics in Aestheticized Markets”, Journal of Consumer Research, 41 (6), 1447-1468. doi.org/10.1086/680671
In the past two decades, participation in online conversations has grown from a relatively marginal activity of hackers, geeks, and early cyberculture members to a mainstream activity recognized and supported by mainstream businesses and media. Starting from tiny numbers of enthusiasts, over a billion people now use social media to communicate, create, and share information, opinions, and insights. Online social spaces have become increasingly recognized as important fields for qualitative social scientific investigation because of the richness and openness of its multifarious cultural sites. At the same time, online data present unique challenges for researchers, as it is voluminous, optionally anonymous, and often difficult to categorize. This chapter introduces readers to netnography, a technique for the cultural analysis of social media and online community data. The purpose of this chapter is to discuss the distinctive cultural features of online, or social media, qualitative data and to overview, develop, and illustrate techniques for their rigorous analysis as they have been developed through the research approach of netnography.
Keywords: Netnography, online methodology, ethnography, qualitative data analysis
Reference: Kozinets, Robert V., Pierre-Yann Dolbec, and Amanda Earley (2014), Netnographic Analysis: Understanding Culture through Social Media Data,” in Uwe Flick, ed. Sage Handbook of Qualitative Data Analysis, Sage: London, 262-275.
How can flagships and brand stores contribute to building brands? We inquire about the relationships between store image, brand experience, brand attitude, brand attachment and brand equity using store intercepts. We find that flagships, due to the powerful brand experiences they allow, have a stronger impact on brand attitude, brand attachment and brand equity compared to brand stores. We provide retail marketers with avenues to offer increased in-store brand experiences by appealing to consumers’ emotions, senses, behaviors, and cognition.
Keywords: Brand experience; Flagship; Brand store; Branding; Retailing
Reference: Dolbec, Pierre-Yann and Jean-Charles Chebat (2013). “The Impact of a Flagship vs. a Brand Store on Brand Attitude, Brand Attachment and Brand Equity”, Journal of Retailing, 89 (4), 460-466. dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jretai.2013.06.003