Success factors in key accounts

Arun Sharma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Purpose - The paper seeks to present research that examines the success factors for key accounts within firms, i.e. what factors lead to successful versus unsuccessful key accounts. Design/methodology/approach - Data from a consulting firm are analyzed to examine the success factors for key accounts within firms. Findings - The results suggest that marketers' relational assets, personal/social bonds, dissatisfaction, and change in environment are the primary drivers of key account success. Research limitations/implications - The paper summarizes one's understanding in this area and provides additional data that will allow firms to re-evaluate their strategies regarding success of specific key accounts. In the light of the sample, additional studies are suggested. Practical implications - Marketers need to invest more in relational assets, personal/social bonds, and satisfaction activities as well as monitor changes in the environment. Originality/value - Key accounts have become an integral part of most business firms, as key account teams are created to provide extra attention to important customers and to allow a consolidation of selling activities to geographically dispersed large customer firms. Previous research has examined the success factors of key account programs between firms and this paper provides data on the success factors of key accounts within firms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)141-150
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Business and Industrial Marketing
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2006


  • Assets
  • Critical success factors
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Key accounts

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Marketing


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