My dissertation focuses on designing marketing strategies to improve firm performance. My dissertation's first essay focuses on designing a competitive strategy for digital media platforms for tackling AdBlock. Online advertising is a major source of revenue for digital media firms but increasing ad-blocking software usage has a negative impact on such revenues. To avoid losses from AdBlock usage, digital publishers mainly use two strategies. First, publishers can use the whitelisting strategy, which blocks AdBlock users from viewing the publishers' content. Second, publishers can use the sophisticated ad recovery (SAR) strategy that bypasses AdBlock and only shows relevant ads to readers. With an analytical model and duopolistic framework, I identify the conditions under which digital publishers might adopt the whitelisting strategy over SAR strategy and those in which two ex-ante symmetric firms might prefer asymmetric strategies to combat ad-blocking usage. My second essay of the dissertation focuses on developing an empirical strategy to design a Chief Marketing Officer's (CMO's) job, which positively affects firm value. Prior empirical research on the design of a CMO's job and its impact on firm value is scarce. My research focuses on the conceptualization and finds empirical support on this issue. I find that variations in describing the design of a CMO's job can affect the contribution of a CMO to the firm value. I use announcement data for 227 publicly traded firms over the 11-years (2005-2016) to show that the design of a CMO's job when focused on the decisional role creates more firm value. The results of the two essays fill the gap that exists in the digital media platforms and top management and have several theoretical and managerial contributions.


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Graduation Date





Bhardwaj, Pradeep


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Business Administration

Degree Program

Business Administration; Marketing









Release Date

August 2024

Length of Campus-only Access

3 years

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Campus-only Access)

Restricted to the UCF community until August 2024; it will then be open access.