Ran AnFollow




Communication Studies


Master of Arts (MA)


Angela Widgeon


B2B, Chinese Manufacturers&American Distribotors, Interpersonal Communication, Organizational Communication, Relationship Marketing, Third Party Intermediary


Business | Business and Corporate Communications | Communication | International and Intercultural Communication | International Business | Marketing


Relationship marketing has been a heated topic in the communication paradigm. The primary relationship is the one between a supplier or provider of goods or services and buyers and users of those goods or services. In order to facilitate it, other stakeholders in the network of relationships may have to be involved. This thesis examined the relationship between Chinese manufacturers and American distributors by a pilot qualitative study. Social exchange theory was used as a scope to analyze the relationship. Nine participants from both sides answered computer-mediated interview questions. Business ethics and worldviews are important factors that businessmen look for to build up long-term business relationships. Research questions were about the participants' personal values, their corporate values, and their need of a third party intermediary. Themes of similar personal values and corporate values emerge in the data analysis. Trust, family, and happiness are the most important personal values for both parties in this study. Trust is considered as one of the most important corporate values for both sides. As an important part of international trade and the modern service industry, the third party intermediary has specialized features to develop the international market and enhance brand value. This study found that Chinese trading intermediaries has not been able to play an active role in the promotion of foreign trade.