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2-Minute Insights

2-Minute Insights is a timely collection of research summaries based on recently published work to provide managers with awareness and understanding on a wide variety of topics ranging from business strategy and entrepreneurship to international expansion, marketing and pricing. Each 2-Minute Insights article is a short accessible read with links to more details for those who want to learn more.

How to craft social media posts that earn both clicks and profits (2021)
Abhishek Borah and his co-authors liken marketing in social media to jazz music; its beauty is not in the expected notes, it is in the improvisation. They argue that the latest technological and interactive tools are needed to create swift, agile, and interesting content.

Can an advertising algorithm lead to gender-based discrimination? (2021)
Computer algorithms are used to automate decision-making in an increasing number of areas, including the delivery and distribution of advertising. However, there are concerns that algorithmic decision making could lead to outcomes that may disadvantage certain populations, especially minority groups.

Is there a CAGE around cyberspace? How digital innovations internationalize in a virtual world (2021)
This research paper shows that while most digital innovations are globally available from inception via online platforms, substantial user adoption barriers persist in cyberspace as users may find foreign digital innovations less relevant to their specific needs.

What do we need to know about internationalization for ‘born digital’ firms? (2020)
This article discusses how digital firms present challenges to traditional views on how firms expand into international markets.

Do new technology ventures need to adapt when they serve international markets? (2020)
This article examines how the goal orientations of managers are linked to whether new technology firms adapt as they internationalize.

Do consumers’ racial biases affect the bottom line of founders launching new products? (2019)
The authors use experimental methods to survey consumer attitudes towards new products launched by founders when the race of the founder is known.

How can you leverage your work experiences into an entrepreneurial career? (2019)
The majority of entrepreneurs work for companies prior to launching their own ventures. Employing organizations provide employees with opportunities to prepare for entrepreneurial careers by involving them in exploration as well as exploitation activities within the company.

Explore or exploit: Strike the right balance for the best outcome (2019)
Should your marketing activities focus on retaining current customers and sustaining current products? Or, should you spend more time going after new customers and developing new products?

What’s in a logo when it comes to crowdfunding? (2019)
Visual cues such as logos, illustrations, photos, and images are pervasive on digital equity crowdfunding platforms. However, they are perceived to have low or no association with venture survival and profitability. This research dispels this perception by showing that visual cues can influence investors’ funding decisions.

How do alliances formed by technology conglomerates facilitate innovation? (2019)
In this paper, researchers create a new method to measure the extent of a firm’s technology conglomeration. This is then used to offer evidence as to what accounts for the increased innovation output by such a technology conglomerate.

How do you convince someone to take a leap of faith with an early-stage invention? (2019)
This study reveals that language choices alone can determine whether or not early-stage scientific inventions receive resource support.

What should happen to launch timing and production when start-ups compete with established firms? (2018)
This research develops a game theory model to predict how a start-up's timing and production decisions are influenced by whether or not the firm is focuses on maximizing survival vs. profit and how an established competitor behaves.

Do customers across cultures react similarly to experiential value online? (2018)
As e-retailers strive to expand their customer-base by targeting customers internationally, this study looked at how consumers across different cultures react differently to experiential value offered by e-retailers.

What’s the impact of a salesperson’s ‘grit’? (2018)
While grit is usually studied in psychology and education, this research highlights its importance in business-related contexts, such as for salespeople, and shows that grit is a key driver of salesperson performance and job satisfaction.

What do we mean by ‘design thinking’? (2018)
Design thinking promises an effective approach to innovation and problem-solving. However, the term is ill-defined, and thus considerable ambiguity and disagreement regarding the attributes, applicability, and outcomes of design thinking. This research provides a comprehensive analysis of existing conceptualization and study and consolidates the knowledge on the subject.

Can understanding Facebook use help online news providers? (2017)
Understanding the interplay between social networks and online news providers becomes fundamental for digital marketers. This research confirms that online news consumption is a shared experience, with the news consumption activity of social network friends associated with similar behavior by other network members.  

Does the language used in online recommendations lead to worse decisions? (2017)
Word of mouth has become increasingly important for firms as consumers turn to one another online for product recommendations. This research looks at the language consumers use to endorse products, and how this language impacts persuasion.

What impact do new product rumors and pre-announcements have? (2017)
This paper examines the potentially positive role of rumors in generating curiosity about new products. It also shows how prior knowledge generated through rumors affects consumer responses to later official pre-announcements about these products.

How should you bundle services with products? Insights from the Finnish mobile phone sector (2017)
An effective and widespread strategy in many industries is to bundle different products and services together as a package. This study explored how the perceptions and behavior of customers that purchase such bundles differ compared to the ones who buy the components separately.

How do serial entrepreneurs impact a tech ecosystem? (2016)
Technology ecosystems are known throughout the world to be important for generating innovative and entrepreneurial businesses. This research studies entrepreneurs within the Waterloo Region ecosystem to determine similarities in their experiences and share learning from their ventures.

How do foreign ties affect international market attractiveness? (2016)
When considering international expansion, entrepreneurial firms use their network of social ties to gain information about which foreign markets to enter. Their assessment of each opportunity depends on many factors. This research examines three such factors.

How do you set prices in an uncertain environment? (2015)
This research investigates how a firm might set prices when there is uncertainty around demand and costs. The general argument is that managers mobilize their knowledge about this uncertainty and combine it with the firm’s risk attitude to determine price.

What’s the influence of your website’s personality? (2015)
The increasingly competitive landscape in online shopping has set the bar higher than ever before for e-retailers. This research investigated the relationships between website personality and two key outcomes for e-retailers, website involvement and website attitudes.

Is better corporate governance beneficial for firms at IPO? (2014)
When a firm plans to IPO, they must create a prospectus for potential investors. Firms have the option of including an earnings forecast in this document. The goal of this research is to determine whether better corporate governance provides improved information to potential investors.

How new is too new to different types of customers? (2014)
This research studies the differences between independents (people who prefer to feel unique or distinct from others) and interdependents (those who value being part of a group) and the impact of their self-perspective on their adoption of new products.

Can creativity be harnessed in large scale projects? (2014)
Large projects are challenging to keep on time and on budget. When they rely on creativity for success, they become even more difficult. This research considers methods of balancing creativity with control in large-scale projects.

Does venture capital impact firm performance? (2013)
Raising venture capital has become a prominent step in the growth of many companies. VCs have been portrayed as special investors who create unique value for the firms they invest in. This research looks at the relationship between venture capital funding and actual firm performance.

Can founder passion impact employee commitment? (2012)
How an employee perceives the founder’s passions impacts how committed they are to the organization. Employee commitment is also affected by their understanding of firm goals, though to a lesser degree than their perceptions of leadership.

Can customers really contribute to creating major innovations? Yes. (2012)
This research challenges the idea that customers can not help a firm create major innovations. It examines the roles and specific contributions customers provide to major innovation projects in small and young technology firms.

Is innovation always beneficial for SMEs? (2011)
This investigation brings together past research to determine whether evidence shows that innovation has a strong tie to bottom line results.

Can consumers be international entrepreneurs? (2010)
Through technology advances, consumers have become international entrepreneurs in their own right, exploiting opportunities to create and market products across the globe. This article was a first-mover in studying why this occurs and the impact this has on international firms.

Is an acquisition or an alliance better for expanding firm knowledge? (2010)
This research examines whether acquisitions or alliances are better sources for external knowledge.

Can young emerging technology firms disrupt markets? (2009)
This research argues that young tech firms can compete effectively against large existing organizations because of their newness. The paper links four types of innovation – incremental, modular, architectural and radical - with sources of competitive advantage for new firms.

What types of new features add value for technology products? (2008)
Technology firms deliver innovation by adding new features to their base products. These features are either similar in nature to the base, or distinct from base functionality. This research considers the impact on the value of a product based on select factors.

What do young international ventures need to know about their networks? (2006)
This study examines how networks change over time for new ventures serving international markets. It draws on case research to develop propositions regarding the types of change the network will experience, characteristics of these changes, and their impact on the young firm.

Do mission statements matter to employees? (2001)
Companies typically expect a mission statement to address the questions: Why do we exist? What is our purpose? What are we trying to accomplish?  This research considers whether there actually is a link between mission statements and financial performance.

How do small software firms use their networks for international expansion? (1997)
Small firms need to determine when and how to expand internationally, particularly in the global, fast-growing technology sector. Now considered a classic article, this research examines how network relationships influence the small firm’s approach to internationalization. The focus is on software developers.


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