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Building Reputational Stocks Through Strategic Action Flows:
Lessons From amazon.com And Its Competitors In Internet Retailing


Violina Rindova


University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business

Suresh Kotha


University of Washington - Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

June 2000


Abstract:     
A growing body of strategy research has recognized that a firm's reputation is one of its most valuable intangible assets. For Internet firms, unprotected by traditional barriers to entry and locational advantages, reputation is a key source of competitive advantages. Drawing on the premise that a firm?s reputation is an asset stock that is accumulated through a flow of strategic actions (Dierickx & Cool, 1989), we analyzed the actions of Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com and CDNow to develop a framework about reputation building by Internet retailers. Our framework proposes that these firms relied on three types of actions: symbolic, competitive, and relational. Amazon.com, the firm that accumulated a superior reputational stock, took a greater number of more diverse and synergistic actions earlier than its competitors. Based on this analysis, the framework links the types of strategic of actions and their pattern over time to the accumulation of reputation stock.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 54

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Date posted: October 29, 2000  

Suggested Citation

Rindova, Violina and Kotha, Suresh, Building Reputational Stocks Through Strategic Action Flows: Lessons From amazon.com And Its Competitors In Internet Retailing (June 2000). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=242989 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.242989

Contact Information

Violina Rindova
University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business ( email )
Dept. of Management
College Park, MD 20742-1815
United States
Suresh Kotha (Contact Author)
University of Washington - Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship ( email )
Seattle, WA
United States
206-543-4466 (Phone)
206-683-9392 (Fax)
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