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Published By Sage Publications

0022-2429, 0022-2429
Updated Friday, 22 October 2021

2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110575
Author(s):  
Daniel Fernandes ◽  
Nailya Ordabayeva ◽  
Kyuhong Han ◽  
Jihye Jung ◽  
Vikas Mittal

This article examines the effect of political identity on customers’ satisfaction with the products and services they consume. Recent work suggests that conservatives are less likely to complain than liberals. Building on that work, the present research examines how political identity shapes customer satisfaction which has broad implications for customers and firms. Nine studies combine different methodologies, primary and secondary data, real and hypothetical behavior, different product categories, and diverse participant populations to show that conservatives (vs. liberals) are more satisfied with the products and services they consume. This happens because conservatives (vs. liberals) are more likely to believe in free will (i.e., that people have agency over their decisions) and therefore to trust their decisions. We document the broad and tangible downstream consequences of this effect for customers’ repurchase and recommendation intentions and firms’ sales. The association of political identity and customer satisfaction is attenuated when belief in free will is externally weakened, choice is limited, or the consumption experience is overwhelmingly positive.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110540
Author(s):  
Julian R. K. Wichmann ◽  
Nico Wiegand ◽  
Werner J. Reinartz

Digital platforms that aggregate products and services, such as Google Shopping or Amazon, have emerged as powerful intermediaries to brand offerings, challenging traditional product brands that have largely lost direct access to consumers. As a countermeasure, several long-established brands have built their own flagship platforms to resume control and foster consumer loyalty. For example, sports brands like Nike, adidas, or ASICS launched tracking and training platforms that allow for ongoing versatile interactions among participants beyond product purchase. The authors analyze these emerging platform offerings, whose potential brands struggle to exploit, and provide guidance for brands that aim to platformize their business. This guidance comprises the conceptualization of digital platforms as places of consumer crowdsourcing (i.e., consumers drawing value from platform participants such as the brand, other consumers, or third-party businesses) and crowdsending (i.e., consumers providing value to platform participants) of products, services, and content along with a well-defined framework that brands can apply to assemble different types of flagship platforms. Evaluating the consequences of crowdsourcing and crowdsending for consumer–platform relationships, the authors derive a typology of archetypical relationship states and develop a set of propositions to help offline-born product brands thrive through platformization.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110530
Author(s):  
Lingrui Zhou ◽  
Katherine M. Du ◽  
Keisha M. Cutright

Consumers have grown increasingly skeptical of brands, leaving managers in a dire search for novel ways to connect. The authors suggest that focusing on one’s relationships with competitors is a valuable, albeit unexpected, way for brands to do so. More specifically, the present research demonstrates that praising one’s competitor—via “brand-to-brand praise”— often heightens preference for the praiser more so than other common forms of communication, such as self-promotion or benevolent information. This is because brand-to-brand praise increases perceptions of brand warmth, which leads to enhanced brand evaluations and choice. The authors support this theory with seven studies conducted in the lab, online, and in the field that feature multiple managerially-relevant outcomes, including brand attitudes, social media and advertising engagement, brand choice, and purchase behavior, in a variety of product and service contexts. The authors also identify key boundary conditions and rule alternative explanations, further elucidating the underlying mechanism and important implementation insights. This work contributes to our understanding of brand perception and warmth, providing a novel way for brands to connect to consumers by connecting with each other.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110478
Author(s):  
Xin (Shane) Wang ◽  
Jiaxiu He ◽  
David J. Curry ◽  
Jun Hyun (Joseph) Ryoo

Sales, product design, and engineering teams benefit immensely from better understanding customer perspectives. How do customers combine a product’s technical specifications (i.e., engineered attributes) to form abstract product benefits (i.e., meta-attributes)? To address this question, the authors use machine learning and natural language processing to develop a methodological framework that extracts a hierarchy of product attributes based on contextual information of how attributes are expressed in consumer reviews. The attribute hierarchy reveals linkages between engineered attributes and meta-attributes within a product category, enabling flexible sentiment analysis that can identify how meta-attributes are received by consumers, and which engineered attributes are main drivers. The framework can guide managers to monitor only portions of review content that are relevant to specific attributes. Moreover, managers can compare products within and between brands, where different names and attribute combinations are often associated with similar benefits. The authors apply the framework to the tablet computer category to generate dashboards and perceptual maps, and provide validations of the attribute hierarchy using both primary and secondary data. Resultant insights allow the exploration of substantive questions, such as how successive generations of iPads were improved by Apple, and why HP and Toshiba discontinued their tablet product lines.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110469
Author(s):  
Shreyans Goenka ◽  
Stijn M.J. van Osselaer

People hold strong moral objections to commercial bodily markets – the buying and selling of the human body and its components (e.g., prostitution; commercial surrogacy; trade of kidneys, blood plasma, sperm, ovum, and hair). This research takes a descriptive approach to understand why people object to the marketing of the human body and how their moral objections differ across the political spectrum. The authors propose that liberals and conservatives find bodily markets to be morally wrong; however, the two groups object to bodily markets for different reasons. Liberals are more sensitive to exploitation concerns, but conservatives are more sensitive to violation of sanctity concerns in these markets. Real-world observational data and controlled experiments test these predictions. The findings show how socio-political leaders utilize the different moral objections to persuade their respective audiences, such as how conservative versus more liberal pastors sermonize differently on prostitution. Second, results show how targeted marketing campaigns encourage liberals and conservatives to participate in consumer advocacy and donate to political causes. Third, findings outline how liberals and conservatives support different regulatory laws that penalize buyers versus sellers. Finally, results show how the different moral objections manifest for live bodily products but not for dead bodily products.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110472
Author(s):  
Samuel D. Hirshman ◽  
Abigail B. Sussman

US Households currently hold $770 billion in credit card debt, often managing repayments across multiple accounts. We investigate how minimum payments (i.e., the requirement to allocate at least some money to each account with a balance) alter consumers’ allocation strategies across multiple accounts. Across four experiments, we find that minimum payment requirements cause consumers to increase dispersion (i.e., spread their repayments more evenly) across accounts. We term this change in strategy the dispersion effect of minimum payments and provide evidence that it can be costly for consumers. We find that the effect is partially driven by the tendency for consumers to interpret minimum payment requirements as recommendations to pay more than the minimum amount. While the presence of the minimum payment requirement is unlikely to change, we propose that marketers and policymakers can influence the effects of minimum payments on dispersion by altering the way that information is displayed to consumers. Specifically, we investigate five distinct information displays and find that choice of display can either exaggerate or minimize dispersion and corresponding costs. We discuss implications for consumers, policy makers, and firms, with a particular focus on ways to improve consumer financial well-being.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110456
Author(s):  
Cammy Crolic ◽  
Felipe Thomaz ◽  
Rhonda Hadi ◽  
Andrew T. Stephen

Chatbots have become common in digital customer service contexts across many industries. While many companies choose to humanize their customer service chatbots (e.g., giving them names and avatars), little is known about how anthropomorphism influences customer responses to chatbots in service settings. Across five studies, including an analysis of a large real-world dataset from an international telecommunications company and four experiments, the authors find that when customers enter a chatbot-led service interaction in an angry emotional state, chatbot anthropomorphism has a negative effect on customer satisfaction, overall firm evaluation, and subsequent purchase intentions. However, this is not the case for customers in non-angry emotional states. The authors uncover the underlying mechanism driving this negative effect (expectancy violations caused by inflated pre-encounter expectations of chatbot efficacy) and offer practical implications for managers. These findings suggest it is important to both carefully design chatbots and consider the emotional context in which they are used, particularly in customer service interactions that involve resolving problems or handling complaints.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110441
Author(s):  
Dionne Nickerson ◽  
Michael Lowe ◽  
Adithya Pattabhiramaiah ◽  
Alina Sorescu

Consumers are increasingly mindful of CSR when making purchase and consumption decisions. While extant research suggests small, positive effects of CSR on measures of firm financial valuation, consumers' behavioral response to CSR initiatives in the form of actual purchase decisions remains undocumented. This paper introduces a framework categorizing firm-initiated CSR efforts as “Corrective,” “Compensating,” or “Cultivating goodwill” actions, and documents the influence of these different types of CSR on brand sales. Leveraging a database of CSR press releases and sales data from leading CPG brands, the authors examine the effect of CSR announcements on brand sales. The findings suggest that CSR initiatives that genuinely seek to reduce a brand's negative social or environmental impact (“Corrective” and “Compensating”) produce the greatest sales lift, while CSR actions consisting of purely philanthropic-type efforts (“Cultivating goodwill”) can actually hurt sales. The experimental results show that, conditional on CSR reputation, consumers perceive varying degrees of sincerity in the different CSR types, which mediate the effect of CSR type on purchase intentions. Overall, the results suggest that consumers are more inclined to reward firms that directly reduce the negative by-products of their own business practices than to be impressed by public goodwill gestures.


2021 ◽  
pp. 002224292110428
Author(s):  
Ewelina Lacka ◽  
D. Eric Boyd ◽  
Gbenga Ibikunle ◽  
P.K. Kannan

Firms increasingly follow an ‘always on’ philosophy, producing multiple pieces of firm-generated content (FGC) throughout the day. Current methodologies used in marketing are unsuited to unbiasedly capturing the impact of FGC disseminated intermittently throughout the day in stock markets characterized by ultra-high frequency trading. They also neither distinguish between the permanent (i.e. long-term) and temporary (i.e. short-term) price impacts nor identify FGC attributes capable of generating these price impacts. In this study, the authors define price impact as the impact on the variance of stock price. Employing a market microstructure approach to exploit the variance of high frequency changes in stock price the authors estimate the permanent and temporary price impacts of the firm-generated Twitter content of S&P 500 IT firms. The authors find that firm-generated tweets induce both permanent and temporary price impacts, which are linked to tweet attributes; valence and subject matter. Tweets reflecting only valence or subject matter concerning consumer or competitor orientation result in temporary price impacts, while those embodying both attributes generate permanent price impact; negative valence tweets about competitors generate the largest permanent price impacts. Building on these findings, the authors offer suggestions to marketing managers on the design of intraday FGC.


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