Attempts have been made to develop theory in marketing over the years, both from a broad perspective (‘general’ theories of marketing) and from more specific viewpoints (theories that address narrower marketing issues). Other researchers have employed theories from marketing's ancestor disciplines, such as economics, psychology and sociology, to explicate marketing problems and issues. However, efforts to allow different theories to compete in terms of explanatory power with regard to a specific marketing problem have been less prevalent in the marketing literature. This article considers a fundamental marketing exchange problem, namely heterosexual partner seeking behaviour or the search for personal relationships, from the perspectives of three competing theories: social exchange theory, evolutionary psychology and feminist theory. Based in these theories, various propositions regarding the exchange of resources in the partner-seeking process are made, and an extensive comparative table of hypotheses constructed. Then, a research agenda is outlined that would permit the testing of these hypotheses and a determination of the relative predictive power of the three theories.

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Marketing Theory

Murgolo-Poore, M.E. (Marie E.), Pitt, L., & Berthon, P.R. (Pierre R.). (2003). Three theoretical perspectives on one of marketing's most fundamental exchanges: Propositions on personal relationships. Marketing Theory, 3(2), 235–265. doi:10.1177/14705931030032003