The Effect of Systems of Thought on Brand Scandal Spillover: Holistic Versus Analytic Cognition Moderating Scandal Spillover and Denial Effects

Yun Lee, University of Iowa, USA
Nara Youn, Hongik University, Korea
We propose that different systems of thought influence the likelihood of brand scandal spillover, depending on the degree to which the contents of brand scandals are processed as context-based or focal object-based information. We demonstrate that holistic thinkers are more susceptible to brand scandal spillover than analytic thinkers are when a brand scandal is not directly associated with the product itself. Therefore, scandal spillover correction occurs to holistic thinkers when brand scandal denials are issued, but the denials boomerang to analytic thinkers. In contrast, analytic thinkers make more biased judgments than holistic thinkers do when a brand scandal is directly associated with the product itself. Analytic thinkers correct for scandal spillover when brand scandal denials are presented, but denials or no denials are equally effective to holistic thinkers in this case.
[ to cite ]:
Yun Lee and Nara Youn (2011) ,"The Effect of Systems of Thought on Brand Scandal Spillover: Holistic Versus Analytic Cognition Moderating Scandal Spillover and Denial Effects", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 38, eds. Darren W. Dahl, Gita V. Johar, and Stijn M.J. van Osselaer, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research.