Outraged Consumers: What Lights Their Fire?

Nada Nasr Bechwati, Bentley College
Maureen Morrin, Rutgers University
EXTENDED ABSTRACT - It seems like outraged consumers are everywhere. They become furious when their flights are cancelled, their telephone bills contain unexpected charges, or the line they must wait in for service is excessively long (Brady, 2000; Appelman, 2001). Considerable research has examined consumer responses to low to moderate levels of dissatisfaction. Researchers have also reported the existence of outraged and highly frustrated consumers who want to get back at firms (Blodgett et al., 1997; Oliver, 1989; Richins, 1983). However, little research has examined in depth the segment of consumers so highly frustrated that they seek to exact revenge on firms or brands. Initial research in this area has documented extreme, and possibly harmful, consumer feelings and behaviors resulting from a consumer desire for vengeance (see, e.g., Nasr and Morrin, in press). In the present paper, we try to better understand the affective experiences of outraged consumers. We particularly focus on what pushes these consumers over the edge, i.e., the main drivers of their outrage.
[ to cite ]:
Nada Nasr Bechwati and Maureen Morrin (2004) ,"Outraged Consumers: What Lights Their Fire?", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 31, eds. Barbara E. Kahn and Mary Frances Luce, Valdosta, GA : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 573-574.