Products As Compensation For Self-Confidence: Subtle Actions Affect Self-View Confidence and Product Choice

Leilei Gao, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, China
Christian Wheeler, Stanford University, USA
Baba Shiv, Stanford University, USA
Four studies show that when a confidently held self-view (e.g., “I am an exciting person”) is temporarily cast in doubt, individuals are motivated to choose products that bolster their original self-view (e.g., choosing brands with exciting brand personalities). The results suggest that subtle manipulations can temporarily “shake” one’s self-view confidence and affect choice, but that such effects are attenuated when individuals have the opportunity to restore their self-view confidence prior to the final choice task.
[ to cite ]:
Leilei Gao, Christian Wheeler, and Baba Shiv (2009) ,"Products As Compensation For Self-Confidence: Subtle Actions Affect Self-View Confidence and Product Choice", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 36, eds. Ann L. McGill and Sharon Shavitt, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 131-134.