Metaphors and Sales Management: A Review and Research Agenda: An Abstract
The marketing and strategy literatures are rich with research explicating the usefulness of metaphors. For example, metaphors have been shown to be useful in the context of brand communication, leadership, marketing communications, marketing management, marketing research, marketing science, marketing theory construction, organizational knowledge production, and sales message creation. However, in the context of sales management, there is little research that investigates metaphors. Therefore, more scholarly research is warranted in the domain of sales management by drawing from other fields on metaphor-based research. Accordingly, the purpose of this research is to identify and discuss relevant literary and theoretical metaphors for sales management and develop a research agenda for metaphors in the context of sales management. Through “metaphoric transfers,” theoretical metaphors can lead to theory construction and new discoveries. Specifically, future research should focus on (1) investigating new and existing literary and theoretical metaphors in the context of sales management, (2) explicating theoretical metaphors and evaluating their usefulness by examining dimensions of metaphoric transfer and analyzing the metaphors using the comparison model and the domains-interaction model, (3) engaging in theory development with reference to metaphors in the context of sales management research, and (4) empirically investigating the theories developed through metaphoric transfers.
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