Suntong QI

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Philosophy (MPHIL)


Marketing and International Business

First Advisor

Prof. PENG Ling

Second Advisor

Prof. CHEN Yu-jen


Promotion attributes, such as giveaways, time limitation and exclusivity, are commonly studied separately. Previous studies may focus on how individual attributes (e.g. time pressure or price discounts) affect sales, but seldom consider the integrative effect of them. As individual attributes are often found to have a bilateral effect (both positive and negative) on sales, in this thesis, we explore how different attributes can be aligned with each other and integrated with different level of brand strength according to fit logic. That is how promotion elicits sales and generates word-of-mouth impact in terms of the configuration of promotional attributes and brand strength. We conduct a field study of 625 online promotion campaigns and discover several effective configurations of promotion attributes through qualitative comparative analysis (QCA). Based on the configurations we have found, we hypothesize that strong brands should adopt non-monetary promotion, while weak brands should adopt monetary promotion; exclusivity and time limitation should be kept mutually exclusive in a single promotion for sales stimulation. Three experiments are designed to test these hypotheses. Focusing on the integrative effect of promotional attributes allows researchers to have a holistic view of causally relevant conditions for designing an effective promotion. This study has important theoretical implications that can facilitate marketers’ understanding and predictions of deal recipients’ responses to promotions.

Recommended Citation

Qi, S. (2016). The integrative effects of promotion attributes: Implications for effective promotion design (Master's thesis, Lingnan University, Hong Kong). Retrieved from

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