If Looks Could Sell: Moderation and Mediation of the Attractiveness Effect on Salesperson Performance
International Journal of Research in Marketing, Vol. 16, No. 4, pp. 269-284, 1999
16 Pages Posted: 6 Apr 2010
Date Written: 1999
This study empirically investigates the effect of perceived salesperson attractiveness on actual salesperson performance, focusing first on the moderating effect of length of the buyer - salesperson relationship and then on the mediating effects of perceived communication ability, likeability, expertise, and trustworthiness on the attractiveness effect. A sample of 339 physicians was surveyed to obtain their evaluations of pharmaceutical company sales representatives’ attractiveness as well as their perceptions of the mediators. Actual brand-by-brand market share data of the subject physicians’ prescriptions was collected as the dependent variable. The results showed that perceived salesperson attractiveness had a significant positive effect on salesperson performance, but the effect was found to diminish as the length of the salesperson-customer relationship increased. Three of the four proposed mediators were found to partially mediate the effect of attractiveness on sales performance.
Keywords: Relationship length; Attractiveness; Performance; Source effects
JEL Classification: M30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation