Tuesday, August 24, 2010


Article reviewed was referenced from Kumar, A & Lim, H, 2008, “Age differences in mobile service perceptions: comparison of Generation Y and baby boomers”, Journal of Services Marketing, issue 22/7, pp. 568 – 577

The research investigates the differences in the perceptions of mobile service quality and their effects on perceived value, satisfaction and loyalty decisions, with respect to two different customer age groups. The research compares Generation Y (Gen Y) and baby boomers in terms of their mobile service perceptions and loyalty intentions.

The research aims to investigate the effects of age on mobile service quality perceptions and its impact on perceived value, satisfaction and loyalty between two significant mobile service user segments – Generation Y and baby boomers.

Objectives studied include:

O1: Data services will have a greater effect on perceived economic and emotional value for Gen y-ers than for baby boomers.

O2: Functional service quality (billing system) will have a greater effect on perceived economic and emotional value for baby boomers than for Gen-Y.

O3: Perceived emotional will have a greater effect on satisfaction for Gen Y-ers than for baby boomers.

O4: Perceived economical value will have a greater effect on satisfaction for baby boomers than for Gen Y.

The main justification is to help mobile service providers (MSP) use the research to learn how to attract new subscribers as well as retain current customers. It is also to assist MSP in developing effective marketing strategies tuned to the specific needs of these two consumer segments. And to offer insights to MSP’s about effectively targeting their services.

The method was through online surveys and questionnaires with 298 respondents. The questions in the questionnaire were not extensive enough and had limitations. Survey type questions are too general and inflexible (CSU 2010).

The research finding found that:

  • data services showed no significant relationship toward perceived value for both groups;
  • the effect on customer service quality on perceived emotional value was significant for Gen Y and insignificant for baby boomers;
  • perceived emotional value has a greater effect on Gen Y-ers than for baby boomers; and
  • perceived economic value had a significant positive effect on satisfaction for baby boomers and not for Gen Y.

The research provide some insights to mobile service providers but it should also be possible to be inferred for other service organizations regarding the difference in service perceptions between the two different age groups.

The research confirms that the relationship between emotional value and satisfaction is stronger for Gen Y than baby boomers.Thus, marketers need to consider young customers’ emotional responses in their marketing efforts.

The research found that economic value had a significant relationship toward satisfaction for baby boomers. Thus, marketing managers in service organizations may place emphasis on their pricing when targeting baby boomers.

In developing strategies to market services, service organizations have to strive to appeal to the emotional value for Gen Y-ers, and for baby boomers, emphasis should be placed on the economic value that can be obtained from their services.


1. CSU (Colorado State University), 2010 “Advantages and disadvantages of survey method”, retrieved 14 August 2010 from website:

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