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Tell Me Your Story and I Will Tell Your Sales: A Topic Model Analysis of Narrative Style and Firm Performance on Etsy

Cutolo, D., Ferriani, S. ORCID: 0000-0001-9669-3486 and Cattani, G. (2020). Tell Me Your Story and I Will Tell Your Sales: A Topic Model Analysis of Narrative Style and Firm Performance on Etsy. Advances in Strategic Management, 42, pp. 103-122. doi: 10.1108/S0742-332220200000042005

Abstract

Strategy scholars have widely recognized the central role that narratives play in the construction of organizational identities. Moreover, storytelling is an important strategic asset that firms can leverage to inspire employees, excite investors and engage customers' attention. This chapter illustrates how advancements in computational linguistic may offer opportunities to analyze the stylistic elements that make a story more convincing. Specifically, we use a topic model to examine how narrative conventionality influences the performance of 78,758 craftsmen selling their handmade items in the digital marketplace of Etsy. Our findings provide empirical evidence that effective narratives display enough conventional features to align with audience expectations, yet preserve some uniqueness to pique audience interest. By elucidating our approach, we hope to stimulate further research at the interface of style, language and strategy.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright © 2021 Emerald Publishing Limited. Chapter 5 ‘Tell Me Your Story and I Will Tell Your Sales: A Topic Model Analysis of Narrative Style and Firm Performance on Etsy’ Donato Cutolo, Simone Ferriani, and Gino Cattani. Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This chapter is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial & non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen at http://creativecommons.org/licences/by/4.0/legalcode
Publisher Keywords: Topic modelling; narrative; conventionality; digital market; craftsmanship; Etsy
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HG Finance
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Departments: Business School > Management
Date Deposited: 05 Nov 2020 12:45
URI: https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/25200
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