Working Paper Session

[ to cite ]:
(2001) ,"Working Paper Session", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 28, eds. Mary C. Gilly and Joan Meyers-Levy, Valdosta, GA : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 135-142.

Advances in Consumer Research Volume 28, 2001     Pages 135-142

WORKING PAPER SESSION

 

THE ROLE OF PRICE IN CHOICE OF BRANDS: A NEW CONJOINT APPROACH

Ron Ventura, Lancaster University

Susan Auty, Lancaster University

The proposed research concerns the role of price in determining consumer choice between brands. Pricing decisions are considered to be the most difficult and sensitive in planning the marketing mix. The difficulty of pricing arises from its different cost and quality effects on consumer perceptions and its impact on other elements of the marketing mix. The conjoint model is unique in its specification of response to price of competing brands, integrated with latent class segmentation. The research aims to contribute by offering a model that will help managers to make more effective pricing and brand management decisions

 

CONSTRUCTING AN INTERPERSONAL INFLUENCE ATTEMPT: AN EXAMINATION OF INFLUENCE STRATEGY CHOICE AND THE EFFECTS OF STRATEGY SEQUENCING

Lynnea Mallalieu, Iowa State University

This research examines the construction of consumption-related influence attempts and the importance of influence strategy sequencing. Study 1 focuses on examining how influence strategies are sequenced within an influence attempt. Existing research indicates that individuals tend to rely on a relatively small set of influence strategies that they combine in some way to attempt influence. The purpose of Study 1 is to examine in detail how influence attempts are constructed. Study 2 examines the importance of strategy sequencing in terms of social acceptability and compliance gaining. Study 2 seeks to ascertain if individuals perceive that influence attempts should be constructed in a certain way and whether or not the sequencing of strategies in a particular way is likely to affect compliance.

 

A THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK FOR MEASURING WITHIN-MICRO-CULTURE-MARKET DIFFERENCES

Denver D’Rozario, Howard University

First, the importance of understanding what the key differences are between individuals in a micro-culture market is highlighted. Next, the concept of assimilation is introduced as a construct by which these differences may be accounted for. Following this, the literature on the measurement of differences within micro-culture markets is surveyed and classified in light of the assimilation construct and a set of conclusions based on this survey are drawn up. Finally, based on these conclusions, a set of recommendations is developed to guide marketers in the future who might wish to rigorously measure the major differences within any micro-culture market.

 

WHEN "EUREKA" FADES INTO "YOU’RE NUTS!"

Terrance G. Gabel, California State University, Northridge

This paper extends previous disciplinary discussions of the scholarly review process via consideration of heretofore neglected obstacles to publication uniquely faced by authors of research deemed controversial on topical grounds. Our discussion of these obstacles suggests the possible existence of a growing conflict of interest which threatens to (continue to) significantly stifle the discipline’s contribution to the understanding of important social phenomena. Implications of the perspective developed are addressed in the context of what might be done to facilitate the improvement of the scholarly review process in marketing and consumer research.

 

THE GREATLY EXAGGERATED GLOBALIZATION-DRIVEN DEATH OF CONSUMER NATIONALISM?: THE IRONIC CASE OF BURTON HELMS AND THE GLOBALIZATION OF NATIONALISM IN MEXICO

Terrence G. Gabel, California State University, Northridge

Gregory W. Boller, University of Memphis

It has been asserted that a major misconception about globalization is that the process has rendered nationalism amongst the world’s consumers a virtual relic of the distant past. The present inquiry empirically supports and extends this critical contention via in situ interpretive analysis of television advertisingCand consumer reaction to itCairing in the context of the 1997 privatization of Mexico’s long-distance telecommunications industry. Data suggest, overall, that although nationalism remains alive and well in Mexico its character has been changed significantly by the powerful forces of globalization.

 

HOW DOES PRIOR KNOWLEDGE INFLUENCE CONSUMER LEARNING? A STUDY OF ANALOGY & CATEGORIZATION EFFECTS

Jennifer Gregan-Paxton, University of Delaware

The purpose of this research is to broaden and refine our understanding of knowledge transfer in a consumer context by comparing and contrasting the impact of analogy and categorization on consumer memory. Consistent with the main assertion of this research, our findings suggest that analogy leads to more restrictive processing of new product information than categorization. The results also shed light on the interaction of the two processes, suggesting that analogy overwhelms categorization when they occur within the same learning episode. Discussion centers on possible explanations for this interaction effect.

 

DIMENSIONAL RANGE OVERLAP MODEL FOR EXPLANATION OF CONTEXTUAL PRIMING EFFECTS

Yi-Wen Chien, Purdue University

Chung-Chiang Hsiao, Purdue University

By proposing the dimensional range overlap model, this study attempts to provide a more complete theory to explain the underlying process for contextual priming effects. This model suggests that the overlap likelihood between target range and prime range on the judgment dimension can determine the occurrence of assimilation and contrast effects. Derived from this key postulate, the dimensional range overlap model further proposes that the interaction effects of three factors, target range width, prime range width, and the relative distance between target and prme, can influence the overlap likelihood so as to influence the occurrence of assimilation and contrast effects.

 

CORRECTION FOR MULTIPLE BIASING FACTORS IN PRODUCT JUDGMENTS

Yi-Wen Chien, Purdue University

Chung-Chiang Hsiao, Purdue University

Consumers’ judgments can be biased by many factors. Some biasing factors may make judgments more favorable than they actually would be, while other biasing factors may make judgments less favorable than they actually would be. This study attempts to examine how consumers correct biases in their judgments, especially when they encounter multiple biasing factors that produce the opposite biasing effects. It is proposed that consumers are more likely to correct only the biasing factors that can be identified, and they will correct these identified biasing factors in a direction opposite to their perceived biasing effects.

 

AGING AND CONSUMER RESPONSES: OPPORTUNITIES, EVALUATION AND A NEW RESEARCH FOCUS

Yany Gregoire, University of Western Ontario

The purpose of this paper is to critically review what is known about the influence of age on consumer responses, and to point out the major contributions and gaps. In order to organize the literature, we propose a framework with two components: age-related changes (e.g., psychological, social and biological changes) and consumer responses (e.g., cognition, affect and behavior). Finally, a new research focus is offered to help to overcome some challenges associated with the existing literature. This research focus is characterized by the development of integrative theory that takes into account several age-related changes.

 

A CROSS-NATIONAL EXAMINATION OF HORIZONTAL AND VERTICAL INDIVIDUALISM AND COLLECTIVISM MEASUREMENT AND IMPACT ON CONSUMER DECISION-MAKING

Eugene Sivadas, Rutgers University

Norman T. Bruvold, University of Cincinnati

Michelle R. Nelson, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Sharon Shavitt, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

This study examines the cultural values of horizontal and vertical individualism and collectivism proposed by Triandis and colleagues (1995, Triandis & Gelfand, 1998). We investigate the dimensionality of the 32-item measure of horizontal and vertical individualism and collectivism developed by Singelis et al (1995), in two cultures: China and the United States. Results indicate that a reduced 16-item measure may be more robust. Logistic regression indicates that HI, HC, VI, and VC can predict country of the respondents. Finally, the impact of individual cultural characteristics on product evaluations and purchase intentions is explored, looking at the impact of information about others’ product attitudes on the judgments of HI, HC, Vi, and VC participants. Results suggest that horizontal collectivists’ product judgments could be favorably influenced by learning of a strong social consensus in favor of the product. In contrast, both horizontal and vertical individualists could be unfavorably influenced by a strong social consensus.

 

GLOBALIZATION AND THE CONSUMER IN EMERGING MARKETS: #INDIA WILL SURVIVE’

Giana Eckhardt, University of Minnesota

Humaira Mahi, University of Minnesota

There exist multiple points of view within academic disciplines as to how much multinationals and the specter of globalization in general harms or helps the developmentCculturally and economicallyCof emerging markets. The role of the consumer has been largely left out of this discussion. By using historical and modern analyses of acceptance and rejection of foreign influences in India we argue that consumers "...may appropriate consumer goods to enhance rather than erode their previous cultural imperatives" (Miller, 1996). By examining the consumer’s role, we contribute to the globalization debate in demonstrating that the consumer can transform the meaning of the `foreign’ offerings to fit in to traditional meaning systems. We find that this process of transformation may involve the consumer rejecting offerings that do not fit into the existing cultural milieu. Consumer behavior literature has not empirically examined this issue, and our analysis suggests a direction for future research that gives the consumer art active role in the globalization debate.

 

THE EFFECT OF WARNING LABELS ON CONSUMERS’ EVALUATIONS OF WAR TOYS

John C. Kozup, University of Arkansas

Elizabeth H. Creyer, University of Arkansas

Many argue that today’s children are desensitized to violence through constant exposure to violent acts on television, in the movies, in video games, and through toys. The state of Hawaii recently attempted to mandate that a warning label be included on any toys that may be considered "war toys." An experiment consisting of a 2 (Australian versus American consumers) X 2 (warning label versus no warning label) X 2 (the price of the war toy was the same as or less than the other toy) X 2 (prior knowledge or no knowledge of product preference) between subjects design was conducted to assess the effects of a warning label and price manipulations on consumers moral judgments and beliefs, attitudes toward the product, purchase intention, and choice process satisfaction. Results indicate war toys, presented in conjunction with a warning label exhibit lower perceived levels of product quality, attitude toward the product, and purchase intention. In addition, warning labels also lead to decreased levels of choice process satisfaction and increased levels of choice deferral. Implications for policy makers, study limitations and additional research opportunities are also discussed.

 

THE REAL THING: CONCEPTUALIZING AUTHENTICITY IN A COMMODITY CULTURE

Dan Fisher, University of Arkansas

Jeff B. Murray, University of Arkansas

This paper examines the important role authenticity plays in our lives and the manner in which authenticity inevitably becomes problematic in a commodity culture. Personal and product identities are established in very similar ways. Often personal identity is constructed through the careful choice of products that have certain associations belonging to them. The system of commodity signs invites us to establish our individuality through acquisition, yet it seems fundamentally inauthentic to buy one’s authenticity. There seems to be no escape. Those who remain outside, or desire exclusion from, the commodity system are targeted as potential sources for authenticity. Incorporation paradoxically leads to a greater sense of alienation. Authenticity becomes a struggle to get beyond the commodity system, but a new set of signs and objects in opposition to the system become prime resources for advertisers and marketers to use to differentiate and authenticate their products in the marketplace.

 

INFORMATION SEQUENCE AND DECISION QUALITY

Dan Ariely, MIT

Sridhar Moorthy, University of Toronto

Ashesh Mukherjee, McGill University

The Internet is opening up the possibility of tailoring information to individual tastes. In this context, an issue arises as to whether the sequence in which information is presented affects the way it is used, with potential consequences for decision quality. Of particular interest is the interaction between information sequence and exposure time the time to which a consumer is exposed to each piece of information.

In a 3-by-2 between-subjects full-factorial experiment, we asked subjects to use the information in a brand-by-attribute matrix to choose the best brand for a principal. Two independent variables were manipulated: information sequence and exposure time. The three levels of information sequence were: simultaneous presentation of all attributes (i.e., no sequence), attribute-by-attribute in increasing order of importance, and attribute-by-attribute in decreasing order of importance. The two exposure time conditions were: low (1.7 seconds per cell) and high (3.4 seconds per cell).

Our results show that, between the two information sequences, decision quality (relative to the simultaneous presentation case) is best when attributes are presented in decreasing order of importance. Further, the lower the exposure time the worse the performance of the increasing-attributes sequence. These results support our theory that in memory-taxing information-processing environments, subjects process information as it comes, making interim judgments as they go along, and adjusting these interim judgments for new data, instead of trying to assemble the entire matrix of information first before beginning the processing. Their final judgments are, therefore, susceptible to primacy effects, favouring the brand that performs best on the first attribute presented.

 

THE IMPACT OF PERCEIVED CONTROL, COUNTERFACTUAL THOUGHTS, AND REGRET ON PRODUCT RETURNS: THE CASE OF E COMMERCE

Carolyn Bonifield, University of Iowa

Catherine A. Cole, University of Iowa

What causes a consumer to return a product that he/she apparently liked well enough to purchase in the first place? Is it a result of a failure to provide the promised benefits, a consumer’s reconsideration of his needs, or something as mundane as a shipping delay (in the case of a catalogue or Web-based order). Clearly, a multitude of possible reasons exist. This paper examines the impact of perceived control on affect, counterfactual thinking, regret and disappointment, and ultimately, on product returns. Specifically, it is postulated that when individuals’ perceived situational control increases, that positive affect increases, and counterfactual thoughts decrease. Once the consumer knows the outcome of the purchase, if perceived situational control was high, the consumer experiences more regret (and less disappointment), which results in an increased likelihood of product returns, but also an increased likelihood of returning to that retailer. This research utilizes a Web-based electronic shopping simulation to manipulate varying levels of perceived control, and demonstrate a broader phenomenon that should have theoretical and managerial applications to both traditional and non-traditional shopping experiences.

 

CONSUMPTION AND THE URBANISED SELF: CONSUMPTION EXPERIENCE OF A GROUP OF PROVINCIAL STUDENTS STUDYING IN THE COSMOPOLITAN BANGKOK

Kritsadarat Wattanasuwan, University of Oxford

Richard Elliott, University of Exeter

This study explores how a group of students from provincial areas exercise everyday consumption to urbanise their sense of selves when they come to study in Bangkok. An interpretive approach via ethnographic fieldwork is employed to achieve an in-depth understanding of the relationship between the self and consumption practices in the consumer acculturation processes. The findings reveal the complexly dynamic and paradoxical selves of these informants. Although they aspire to urbanise their selves in order to assimilate properly into the new social environment, they still wish to persevere their ties with the provincial roots.

 

THE WORLDMINDED CONSUMER: AN EMIC EXPLORATION

Suzanne C. Beckmann, Copenhagen Business School

Gnnther Botschen, Copenhagen Business School

Martina Botschen, Copenhagen Business School

Susan P. Douglas, Copenhagen Business School

Susanne Friese, Copenhagen Business School

Ed Nijssen, Copenhagen Business School

In many cross-national consumer studies, a scale developed in one country or context, often the US, is translated and used in another country or context, assuming that it is equally applicable or relevant. This gives rise to a number of issues relating to construct equivalence and bias. The present study adopts a "decentred, convergent" approach to explicate the concept of worldmindedness, and to develop operational definitions and measures of the construct in different countries and linguistic contexts. The paper reports findings from the first stage of this project, probing the concept of "worldmindedness" in three countries, namely Austria, Denmark and the US.

 

IMAGES OF INTEGRATED SYMBOLS: CONSUMER NEGOTIATION OF BRAND MEANINGS

Anders Bengtsson, Lund University

The occurrence of integrated symbols through affinity partnerships like co-branding and joint promotion raises the question: How do consumers interpret and give meanings to consumer goods that feature several brand names? The creation of brand meanings is here considered as a process of negotiation between several contexts. When two or more brand names appear together in an ad or on a package there may come up additional meanings that consumers use for negotiating brand meanings. The figure/ground metaphor is used to illustrate what consumers perceive when negotiating meanings for integrated symbols.

 

CONSUMING MATSURI: THE LEGACY OF RELIGION IN JAPANESE CONSUMER CULTURE

Rika Houston, California State University, Los Angeles

This cross-cultural conceptual paper explores the notion of religion as a cultural institution and the legacy of religion as a shaping force in contemporary Japanese consumer culture. After first presenting a historical overview of the evolution of religion in Japan as well as its contemporary manifestation, the author explores the heightened level of enthusiasm and consumption that takes place in the context of such religious fetes. Conclusions are drawn in the form of questions for future research and challenges associated with misinterpretation of religion and religious constructs in different cultural settings.

 

PERSONALITY PROCESSING TRAITS AND SHOPPING BEHAVIOR

Jane Sojka, Ohio University

This paper explores differences in shopping behaviors based on two personality processing traitsCneed for cognition and need for affectCwhich have been useful in previous consumer research. Using a grounded theory approach, preliminary results suggest individuals with different traits report different shopping patterns. In comparison to the other groups, Thinkers (high NFC, low NFA) recalled and compared prices, Feelers (high NFA, low NFC) reported more impulsive purchases and brand commitment, while Combiners (high NFC and high NFA) compared prices, compared brands and were most likely to evaluate sales representatives. Exploratory results suggest that linking personality processing traits with specific shopping patterns warrants further investigation.

 

IN THE SHADOW OF DOUBT: ADVERTISER DECEPTION AND THE DEFENSIVE CONSUMER

Robin Ritche, University of British Columbia

Peter R. Darke, University of British Columbia

Despite the prevalence of deceptive and misleading advertising, little is understood about the consequences of deception on consumer response to subsequently presented ad claims. We conducted an experiment to examine these effects, and to determine whether they would generalize to claims made by a different advertiser. Using the heuristic-systematic model as our conceptual framework, we hypothesized that consumers would exhibit negative bias regardless of the source, but that processing would be systematic in the case of the deceptive retailer and heuristic in the case of other retailers. Our experiment confirmed these predictions. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

 

THE EFFECT OF BRAND NAME ON CONSUMERS’ EVALUATION OF PRICE DISCOUNTS AND TIE-IN PRODUCT PROMOTIONS

Rajesh Manchanda, University of Manitoba

Rajneesh Suri, Drexel University

Kent B. Moore, University of Illinois

The focus of this research was to examine the effect of brand name on the evaluation and preference for price discounts versus tie-in product promotions. Findings of an experimental study suggest that for reputable or strong brands (e.g., Sony) price discounts enhance the value of the promotional offer and are preferred to tie-in product promotions. However, for less reputable or weak brands, consumers’ perceptions of value are enhanced by high quality tie-in product promotions, which are preferred to price discounts. The price-quality-value literature and thought measures of participants provide reasons for this finding. Implications for managers are offered and discussed.

 

THE RED-FACED CUSTOMER: INVESTIGATING EMBARRASSMENT IN THE CONTEXT OF CONSUMER PURCHASE

Darren W, Dahl, University of Manitoba

Rajesh V. Manchanda, University of Manitoba

Jennifer Argo, University of Manitoba

While it has been documented in the marketing trade literature that certain products can cause embarrassment when they are purchased (e.g., adult diapers, hemorrhoid creams), relatively little is known regarding when and why embarrassment occurs in consumer purchasing situations. An empirical study seeks to identify when embarrassment occurs in purchase, and to investigate some of the theoretical reasons for purchase embarrassment. This study utilizes a field experiment conducted in a real-world context. Drawing from established psychological theory relating to the causes of embarrassment, a conceptual framework is developed and tested. In this study, previous purchase experience, social presence at the time of purchase, and individual characteristics of the consumer are shown to impact purchase embarrassment.

 

"OH! WOW!" HOW SURPRISE ENHANCES SATISFACTION

Jodlle Vanhamme, UniversitT Catholique de Louvain

Dirk Snelders, Delft University of Technology

Empirical findings suggest that surprise plays an important role in consumer satisfaction, but there is a lack of theory to explain why this is so. The present paper provides possible explanations for the process through which surprise may influence consumer satisfaction. A first explanation is that the arousal that is part of the surprise reaction contaminates subsequent positive affective reactions or emotions about the product or service. An alternative explanation is that the surprise reaction allows for a strong focus on a single product or service aspect. This will create more accessible knowledge that ill have a disproportionate effect on memory-based satisfaction judgements.

 

DAY-OF-THE-WEEK BIASES IN TRACKING SURVEYS

Lance-Michael Erickson, New York University

Vicki G. Morwitz, New York University

This paper examines whether the results of tracking surveys vary systematically with the day-of-the-week the survey was conducted. Responses to surveys conducted daily during the 1996 and 1992 U.S. Presidential elections, and the 1996 Congressional election conducted by CNN, USA Today, and Gallup are analyzed. The results suggest that surveys conducted during weekdays overstate support for the Republican candidate relative to the results of surveys conducted during weekends. This paper reports the difference in results of tracking surveys by day-of-the-week, suggests why such differences may occur, and discusses the implications of the results for survey research practice.

 

IF IT’S A QUESTION OF LIFE AND DEATH DOES "HOW OFTEN" MATTER? FREQUENCY JUDGMENTS IN AFFECTIVELY VALENCED MESSAGES

Sucharita Chandran, New York University

Research has shown that with respect to day-to-day affective behavior, a shorter reference period (implying more frequently performed behavior) implies lower intensity of the affective behavior. The current study attempts to reverse that result in the context of behavior that has severe affective consequences in domains such as personal safety and heath. Consumers are often confronted with affectively valenced messages on life threatening or life saving issues. In order to create a maximal impact, these messages usually carry statistics on lives lost or lives saved, represented in some reference period e.g., per day or per year. In this context this study tests the hypothesis that when differential reference periods of the same event are embedded in affectively valenced messages, the shorter reference period elicits the greater event likelihood and intensity of occurrence. The results of the first study provide support for this hypothesis.

 

ARE YOU A LARK OR AN OWL? THE EFFECTS OF TIME OF DAY AND CIRCADIAN TYPE ON CONSUMER INFORMATION PROCESSING

Suresh Ramanathan, New York University

This paper examines the effect of varying energy levels resulting out of biological rhythms on the type of processing strategies used by consumers: We demonstrate that people adopt a peripheral mode of processing under non-optimal conditions, where their own biological rhythm does not match with the time of day. On the other hand, people find the subjective resources to elaborate on information when their biological rhythm matches the time of day. A key implication of these findings is that the same individual, with a stable level of involvement, can process information differently depending on what time of day the information is presented. These states of mind act in the same manner as constraints placed on cognitive resources, but are more systematic than temporary cognitive loads. These findings are discussed within the framework of the Elaboration-Likelihood Model.

 

A MODEL FOR CONSUMER DEVOTION: WHAT WE CAN LEARN FROM FOOTBALL FANS

Ronald W. Pimentel, University of Central Florida

Kristy Reynolds, University of Central Florid

We present a model of the consumer devotion process, based on findings from qualitative research. We propose that the process begins with several antecedent factors, which then may motivate the consumer to develop either calculative or normative commitment. Consumer who move through a "transition" phase may then progress to affective commitment. Several important outcomes then result. We illustrate our findings in a football context, offering rich examples from the data. Managerial implications are offered, as well as future research directions.

 

AN EMERGENT MODEL OF INTRA-HOUSEHOLD RESOURCE ALLOCATION

Suraj Commuri, University of Nebraska

Several household structures are dominant today prominent among them is the dual income family. In addition, it is estimated that one in three working wives earns more than her husband. Yet, this emerging household form has not been researched. The current understanding of the household in marketing rests on research conducted on the "traditional" household structure and many assumptions are contained within resource theory. This paper presents data that suggest that resource theoretic assumptions about family consumption behavior may need revision. A revised resource theory model is presented that reveals more than one pool of resources in dual income families.

 

BEYOND REFERENCE PRICE: THE ROLE OF UNMET PRICE EXPECTATIONS IN CONSUMERS’ PERCEPTIONS OF VALUE

Joan Lindsey-Mullikin, Babson College

This manuscript posits a new approach for understanding the reference price phenomenon. It is proposed here that Festinger’s (1957) theory of dissonance reduction provides a practical framework for studying situations in which consumers’ encountered prices are significantly different from their expectations. The three modes of dissonance reduction initially proposed by Festinger (to change one’s attitude or cognition, to seek consonant information, or to trivialize some element of the dissonant relationship) are experimentally manipulated. These three modes of dissonance reduction are then evaluated for their impact on consumers’ perceptions of value and consumers’ purchase intentions. A computer-controlled shopping experiment is utilized to test the hypotheses.

 

EFFECTS OF PRODUCT CONGRUENCY ON DIMENSIONS OF ENDORSER EXPERTISE

Scott Smith, University of Arkansas

Jennifer Christie, University of Arkansas

Thomas Jensen, University of Arkansas

This research investigated the effects of product/endorser congruency and endorser familiarity on perceptions of endorser credibility and attitudes. Another purpose of this study was to extend and revise Ohanian’s (1990) scale to measure endorser credibility, distinguishing between product and expertise and professional-related expertise. Subjects were able to make the distinction. Product congruency affected both expertise and credibility. Endorsers were perceived as more credible when advertising a product congruent with their area of expertise. Endorser/product congruency also resulted in more favorable attitudes toward the brand, the ad, and purchase intentions.

 

HOSPICE VOICES: ATTITUDES ABOUT PHYSICIAN ASSISTED SUICIDE

Kathleen S. Micken, Roger Williams University

Jamie Goldstein-Shirley, University of Washington

Physician assisted suicide is one of the more contentious health care issues in our society. The opinions of physicians, nurses, pharmacists, and of the general public have been assessed. The opinions of hospice professionals, those on the front line of the assisted suicide issue, have so far gone unreported. This paper helps to rectify that omission. It presents the results of an initial investigation of hospice professionals’ comments on a survey about physician assisted suicide. While the comments generally echo the positions articulated in the media, they also present very personal pictures of the debateCand thereby expand its consideration away from the polar extremes.

 

COMPARISON OF THE POPULARITY OF 9-ENDING PRICES IN THE U.S. AND POLAND

Rajneesh Suri, Drexel University

Ralph E. Anderson, Drexel University

Vassili Kotlov, Drexel University

American multinationals, when deciding pricing strategies for their culturally diverse foreign markets, usually have to debate whether to change or to keep the pricing strategy that they have been using at home. The recent move towards standardization in global markets has only raised the importance of this issue. This research addresses this issue by comparing the effectiveness of 9-ending prices or just below prices in the US and in an eastern bloc country like Poland. A conceptual framework was developed to predict why there might be differences in preference for such 9-ending prices in Poland and US. Result from the first study shows that 9-ending prices, which are popular in the US market, are not well received in the Polish market. The second study provided further insights by determining reasons for differences in perception and preference for such prices in the two countries.

 

THE EFFECT OF UNCERTAINTY AVOIDANCE ON INFORMATION SEARCH, PLANNING AND PURCHASES OF INTERNATIONAL VACATION TRAVEL SERVICES

R. Bruce Money, University of South Carolina

John C. Crotts, College of Charleston

Academics and marketers know relatively little about haw national culture affects the way people plan and spend in the $448 billion international travel and tourism economy. From a patched sample of 1,213 German, Japanese, and Taiwanese visitors to the U.S., this research explores the relationship between the cultural dimension of uncertainty (or risk) avoidance with information search, trip planning time horizons, travel party characteristics (e.g., size of group) and trip characteristics (e.g., length of stay). Results show that consumers from national cultures characterized by higher levels of uncertainty avoidance use information sources that are related to the channel (e.g., travel agent), instead of personal, destination marketing-related, or mass media sources; they also more frequently purchase prepackaged tours, travel in larger groups, and stay on average a shorter time and visit fewer number of destinations. Contrary to expectations, they do not spend more time making the decision to travel or making their airline reservations. Implications for future research and marketing practice (e.g., segmentation and standardization) are also discussed.

 

EXPANDING THE BOUNDARIES OF SELF-PROPHECY: THE USE OF PREDICTION REQUESTS IN ADVERTISING

Bianca Grohmann, Washington State University

Eric R. Spangenberg, Washington State University

David E. Sprott, Washington State University

Based on research surrounding the self-prophecy phenomenon (whereby the prediction of one’s own behavior elicits future actions consistent with the prediction), we explore whether the inclusion of a prediction request in an advertisement affects recycling behavior. A pretest, field study, and a laboratory experiment indicate an advertisement with prediction request ("Ask yourself...will you recycle?") can enhance recycling behavior. The current research provides optimism for the wide-scale use of self-prophecy to affect behaviors in a socially beneficial manner. Implications for social marketing, business and research are provided.

 

THE SEARCH FOR INFORMATION: MULTIPLE MEASURES OF SEARCH & INTERDEPENDENCY OF SEARCH ACTIVITIES

Jinkook Lee, University of Tennessee

Jeanne M. Hogarth, Program Manager, Federal Reserve Board

The difficulty of measuring consumer’s information search behavior has long been acknowledged and continuously discussed in the literature. We investigate consumers’ information search patterns using multiple measures and the potential interdependencies among search activities. Using the 1997 University of Michigan Survey of Consumers, we find consumers have diverse patterns of information search that cannot be captured by a macro-measure or a few single measures of search. In addition, strong interdependencies exist among search activities.

 

COMPOSITE PRODUCTS AS CONCEPTUAL COMBINATIONS: COMBINATORIAL PROCESSES AND BRAND EVALUATIVE EFFECTS

Tripat Gill, McGill University

Laurette Dube, McGill University

Composite products are new products that are combinations of multiple existing product concepts (e.g., Web-TV or Sports-Utility Vehicles). We view composite products as a conceptual combination (e.g., Web, as modifier and TV, as header). In this paper, we build on the most recent developments in this literature to develop a set of research propositions on consumer perception and evaluation of composite products. Following Wisniewski’s theorizing, we propose that composite products are formed by one of three processes: mapping of the modifier’s property on that of the header (e.g., digital camera); linking the header and modifier with a plausible relation (e.g., underwater camera); hybridization with mapping of central properties of the modifier on central properties of the header (e.g. watch camera). We identify moderators of these processes (header modifier similarity, visual imagery instructions, momentary mood), and specify how brand effects on consumer evaluation of composite products may vary as a function of the underlying combinatorial process.

 

CAN PRODUCT ATTRIBUTES BE REDUCED TO AFFECTIVE AND COGNITIVE DIMENSIONS IN MEASURING ATTITUDE BASES? A CROSS-CULTURAL CONFIRMATORY FACTOR ANALYSIS

Marie Cecile Cervellon, McGill University

Laurette Dube, McGill University

Han Jingyuan, Hebei University of Science and Technology

This paper reports a multi-sample confirmatory factor analysis to test the theoretical structure of a multi-item scale developed to capture the affective and cognitive basis of product (food) attitude. 329 participants (divided in 3 samples, 118 French from France, 100 Chinese from People Republic of China, and 111 Chinese from Canada) completed the measurement scale. Results of multi-sample confirmatory factor analyses show that across samples, reducing the product attributes scales to the two basic affective and cognitive dimensions did not provide an acceptable structure. Superior fit was obtained for a four-attribute model, encompassing emotional, sensorial, health and convenience, and for a second-order model preserving a hierarchical structure between the two basic dimensions and their corresponding product attributes. The degree of fit did not differ between these two models. The implication of the results for product attitude measurement is discussed

 

CONSUMER PERCEPTIONS OF AND ATTITUDES TOWARD BRAND NAMES: THE EFFECT OF MORPHEMIC FAMILIARITY

Dawn Lerman, Fordham University

A morpheme is the smallest unit of language that carries information about meaning or function (O’Grady, Dobrovolsky, and Aronof, 1989). English contains more than 6,000 morphemes ranging from full words (free morphemes) such as "man" to small parts of words that cannot stand alone (bound morphemes) such as "-ly." These 6000+ morphemes can and have been combined to form the tens of thousands of words found in today’s English language dictionaries. Similarly, managers create new morphemic combinations to be used as brand names. This paper discusses two types of names generated by this morphemic approach and examine their influence on consumer perceptions and attitudes. More specifically, this paper argues that no one name type is consistently superior in eliciting positive consumer perceptions thus making explicit some of the tradeoffs involved in brand naming.

 

CONSISTENCY IN CONSUMER PREFERENCES: CONNECTING PERCEPTIONS OF THE PRODUCT, THE PERSON, AND THE SITUATION IN PREFERENCE SCHEMAS

Inge Brechan, Norwegian School of Management

Even J. Lanseng, Agricultural University of Norway

The purpose of this paper is to examine the extent to which we may enhance the prediction of actual purchase by conceptualizing personal and situational variables in terms of schema theory. It is argued that consumers combine features from products with situational and personality elements to form preference, and that the resulting preference appears at a different level of aggregation than features related to nominal product categories. To come up with such a conceptualization of preference we emphasizes literature on social cognition and categorization theory. Based on a review of this literature, we derive to propositions concerning the efficiency of such preference schema. The paper also outlines two studies that may be conducted to examine theses propositions.

 

IS THERE A "GOLDEN" AD? THE EFFECT OF AD SHAPE AND SPATIAL LAYOUT OF AD ELEMENTS ON AD PREFERENCE

Johan de Heer, Tilburg University

Esther Noble, Tilburg University

The focus of the present study is on the effects of advertisement spatial layout on ad preference. In an experimental study we manipulated ad shape (external layout) and the spatially arrangement of the ad elements (internal layout): headline, body-text, picture, and logo. We found that ad shapes conform to a complex height/width ratio, and in which the ad elements were spatially arranged according to a simple ratio, were preferred over other ads. Content analyses, based on 1356 ads, revealed that a complex height/width ratio is applied frequently in real ads. A theoretical rationale was found in the most recent developments in neurobiology on the subject of aesthetic preferences. We conclude this paper by some theoretical, methodological and practical implications for consumer and advertising research.

 

INFORMATION? YES! PROCESSING? NO! CONSUMERS’ USE OF ETHICAL PRODUCT LABELING

Soren Askegaard, SDU Odense University

Dannie Kjeldgaard, SDU Odense University

Reflecting an increasing interest from consumer policy agencies to provide information about such issues as "ethically correct products" on top of the existing product information on various types of labeling, this work-in-progress paper summarizes the present results and conclusions of an ongoing investigation of consumers’ uses of product labeling, with specific focus on labeling for ethical issues. The study uses a variety of methods, but the focus in this paper is mainly on results from the depth interviews with families. A second round of interviews using also experimental designs for conjoint analysis are scheduled for this spring and results of these experiments as well as label tests made with the interviewed families will be shown at the poster presentation. The study is sponsored by the Danish State Consumer Policy Board.

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