The copycat CMO: firms’ imitative behavior as an explanation for CMO presence
The present study adds to the CMO literature the perspective of firms’ imitative behavior on why firms have CMOs in their TMT. We propose that a firm’s decision to have a CMO on its TMT is driven not only by contingency-reated considerations but also by social ones, as the decision is significantly influenced by industry peers. Empirical findings based on 505 large US firms from 2000 to 2012 indicate that firms’ imitative behavior is a significant driver of CMO presence, especially when firm uncertainty is strong and inference uncertainty is low. Post hoc analyses indicate that this imitation behavior tends to be performance neutral at best.
KeywordsChief marketing officer Imitation Neoinstitutional theory Herding Uncertainty
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