Blurring Similarities and Differences: the Role of Category Width on Salient Comparison Orientation

We show that prior exposure to broad categories increases sensitivity to salient comparison focus (similarities or differences), whereas exposure to narrow categories leads to consideration of both similarities and differences. Consequently, broad (but not narrow) categorizers’ conflict, confidence and evaluations are influenced by the salient cues.


Selin Malkoc and Gulden Ulkumen (2012) ,"Blurring Similarities and Differences: the Role of Category Width on Salient Comparison Orientation", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 40, eds. Zeynep Gürhan-Canli, Cele Otnes, and Rui (Juliet) Zhu, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 266-270.


Selin Malkoc , Washington University, USA
Gulden Ulkumen, University of Southern California, USA


NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 40 | 2012

Share Proceeding

Featured papers

See More


Is All That Glitters Gold? The Effect of Product Surface Glossiness on Consumer Judgments

Jiaqi SONG, Hong Kong Polytechic University
Yuwei Jiang, Hong Kong Polytechic University
Gerald J. Gorn, Hong Kong Polytechic University

Read More


G2. You Run When Time Flies: Time Metaphors Affect Inferences from the Speed of Time

N. Alican Mecit, HEC Paris, France
L. J. Shrum, HEC Paris, France
tina m. lowrey, HEC Paris, France

Read More


Walking the Thin Edge: The Dark Side of Brand Communities and Collecting

Emily Chung, RMIT University
Marcia Christina Ferreira, Brunel University
daiane scaraboto, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Read More

Engage with Us

Becoming an Association for Consumer Research member is simple. Membership in ACR is relatively inexpensive, but brings significant benefits to its members.