Customer Poaching and Brand Switching

Posted: 8 Dec 2000

See all articles by Drew Fudenberg

Drew Fudenberg

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Jean Tirole

University of Toulouse 1 - Industrial Economic Institute (IDEI); University of Toulouse 1 - Groupe de Recherche en Economie Mathématique et Quantitative (GREMAQ); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Abstract

Firms sometimes try to "poach" the customers of their competitors by offering them inducements to switch. We analyze duopoly poaching under both short-term and long-term contracts assuming either that each consumer's brand preferences are fixed over time or that preferences are independent over time. With fixed preferences, short-term contracts lead to poaching and socially inefficient switching. The equilibrium with long-term contracts has less switching than when only short-term contracts are feasible, and it involves the sale of both short-term and long-term contracts. With independent preferences, short-term contracts are efficient, but long-term contracts lead to inefficiently little switching.

Suggested Citation

Fudenberg, Drew and Tirole, Jean, Customer Poaching and Brand Switching. RAND Journal of Economics, Vol. 31, No. 4, 2000. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=244838

Drew Fudenberg (Contact Author)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) ( email )

77 Massachusetts Avenue
50 Memorial Drive
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
United States

Jean Tirole

University of Toulouse 1 - Industrial Economic Institute (IDEI) ( email )

Place Anatole France
21 Allees de Brienne
F-31042 Toulouse Cedex
France
+33 5 61 12 8642 (Phone)
+33 5 61 12 8637 (Fax)

University of Toulouse 1 - Groupe de Recherche en Economie Mathématique et Quantitative (GREMAQ) ( email )

Manufacture des Tabacs
21 Allees de Brienne
Toulouse, 31000
France

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

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