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Using Your Imagination to Pursue Goals: Diminishing the Effects of Visceral Temptations

Description: Consumers consistently set goals for themselves. Despite good intentions, consumers often deviate from their goals. If consumers understand the benefits that arise from goal success, then why do most consumers fail to accomplish goals? Often, temptations are more appealing than achievement of goals; temptations are tangible while the benefits of a goal are difficult to grasp. An individual who uses his/her imagination to visualize goal success makes the goal more present-minded and attainable (Oettingen 2000). Thus, imagination facilitates self-efficacy, the belief in one’s ability to reach a goal. Higher self-efficacy, then, provides an individual with the willpower to achieve a goal (Taylor, Pham, Rivkin, and Armor 1998). Whereas previous work has examined temptations’ relationship with goals (e.g. Fedorikhin and Patrick 2010; Wilcox, Vallen, Block, and Fitzsimons 2009; Zhang, Huang, and Broniarczyk 2010; etc.), the scope of this dissertation study differs. Rather, the research aim is to identify how consumers can overcome visceral temptations. Thus, the main objectives include: contributing new perspectives on goal research by merging the literatures on imagination and visceral cues, outlining how imagination regulates the impact of visceral temptations, and identifying the underlying mechanism that explains how imagination regulates the relationship between visceral cues and ad-evoked thoughts, through self-efficacy.
Date: August 2015
Creator: Cowan, Kirsten
Partner: UNT Libraries

"I Speak, Therefore I Am:" Identity and Self-Construction as Motivation to Engage in Electronic Word of Mouth

Description: To paraphrase an old bromide, "you are what you consume." Consumers derive their sense of self through products, brands, performances and a host of other meaning-laden materials that they consume. The marketing literature has long recognized possessions as an extension of the self-concept. Although hundreds of studies have examined the linkage between consumption and the self, surprisingly few have examined a related phenomenon - the relationship between the self-concept and word of mouth (WOM). A handful of studies have demonstrated the use of WOM to enhance the consumer's self-image, but most extant research focuses on how the act of engaging in WOM is used to build the self-concept. To date there has not been an extensive examination of the process by which WOM transfers the meaning of a product, brand, advertisement or narrative from one consumer to another as part of identity construction. This dissertation attempts to answer the following research questions: 1. Do self-concept and identity motivate consumers to engage in electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM)? 2. Is there a conceptual model to represent the effects of message characteristics, product/brand characteristics and individual personality differences on the self-enhancement value of eWOM and resulting eWOM behaviors? A conceptual model was proposed and, using an experimental research design, hypotheses were tested using structural equation modeling (SEM). The results suggest that self-concept and identity indeed motivate consumers to engage in eWOM, and a number of brand and message traits comprise eWOM's self-enhancement value. This dissertation both contributes to the theoretical understanding of eWOM and assists managers in developing marketing strategy. The use of WOM for identity construction remains an understudied area in marketing when compared to the consumption of products as self-expression. This research provides suggestions for practitioners in harnessing the potential of eWOM as a marketing strategy through message development and targeting of ...
Date: August 2010
Creator: Taylor, David George
Partner: UNT Libraries

Civility Matters

Description: While the proliferation of literature on the subject of growing incivility in society demonstrates the increasing importance given to civility by corporate America, there has been little academic investigation of the concept. The limited number of academic studies on civility reveals immense negative consequences for uncivil behavior. One question for marketers of businesses is whether lack of civility among front-end personnel can negatively influence sales. This dissertation is an attempt to fill this research gap by exploring responses to uncivil behavior under the theoretical framework of attribution theory. Using the CDSII scale based on attribution theory, experimental research design was used with current civil and uncivil behavior by the store employees and past experiences (positive, negative, and no-experience) with the store as stimulus. The consumers' perception of civility, attributions and behavioral intentions were measured and used as dependent variables. The results of the experiment showed that when a customer discerns employee behavior to be uncivil, the customer's perception of the level of the ability of the employee to control his own behavior decreases. The results of the study enhance the knowledge of two important consumer behaviors, namely complaining and switching behaviors by empirically studying their antecedents in a particular market interaction context. The results imply that it is important to eliminate or minimize any experience that the customer may construe as negative at a store. If practitioners can work towards eliminating or decreasing certain attributions of consumers, they can reduce the switching behaviors and thus impact customer retention rates and future sales. Though this study contributes to marketing theory and provides vital insights to practitioners, this study is but a starting point for further examination of the role of civility in consumer behavior and decision making.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Vahie, Archna
Partner: UNT Libraries

In-store Event Needs and Technology Use Among Half Price Books Customers

Description: Half Price Books, Records, Magazines, Inc. (HPB), fills a unique niche by selling a variety of new, used and rare merchandise primarily in their chain of 116 stores in sixteen states and online. The company has noticed increased mobile device use among customers in their stores while sales have declined in recent years. To remain viable HPB is attempting to adapt to market forces in a timely manner while remaining continually interested in growth and innovation. A major part of adapting, growing, and innovating is the adoption and astute utilization of technology in-store and a more complete understanding of their customers’ activities and preferences. The goal is to make Half Price Books a more technologically savvy destination for shopping, community events, and entertainment. One purpose of this study is to give the company a better idea of how customers use technology in searching for merchandise including information searches generated in-store from mobile devices and how customers use the internet to find merchandise prior to and following their experiences in HPB’s stores. Another important purpose is to also determine what kinds of events such as book signings, poetry readings and other special events customers would like to see at Half Price Books, since the company has indicated a strong desire to provide fun and memorable experiences as well as products. The major research aims of this study are (1) To explore how customers use technology in searching for books in relation to two Half Price Books locations in Arlington, Texas and (2) To determine what customers want in terms of in-store events at these same locations.
Date: December 2013
Creator: Wilson, Steven K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Supply Chain Learning: A Grounded Theory Analysis

Description: Under the unifying theme of supply chain learning, this three essay dissertation extends scholarship by investigating these multi-tier relationships. Theory is emerged, grounded in data, gathered from functioning supply chains in an effort to provide scholars and practitioners with an increased understanding of the SCL phenomena. Essay 1, entitled "Supply Chain Learning: An Exploratory Literature Review" examines the current literature in an attempt to address the shortcomings and emerge areas that have been less explored and less understood. By exposing these areas of research opportunities using a grounded theory methodology, a framework was emerged allowing identification of the limitations of extant literature and providing a springboard for future research. This framework also allowed further investigation into the SCL processes and expansion of the current understanding by providing academia with a comprehensive review of the literature and revealing the shortcomings that exist related to SCL. Using the framework emerged in Essay 1, Essay 2 entitled "Toward Supply Chain Learning: A Focus on the Customers of Logistics Service Providers" explores the rationalization and cognitive processes of senior level executives of firms utilizing national or global supply chains. These respondents are directly engaged in creating, establishing and operating relationships with third party logistics (3PL) providers within a functioning supply chain. By examining the relationships and processes from the point of view of customers of third party logistics providers, a unique perspective provides insight into these relationships. Using semi-structured interviews with these executives, grounded theory was once again used to emerge theory explaining the phenomena of SCL. In particular, this research examines the elements studied from the perspective of customers of third party logistics providers as they seek to develop new processes and solutions in hopes of obtaining a competitive advantage by adaptive learning with the help of their providers and trading partners. In ...
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Date: August 2018
Creator: Morgan, Thomas V
Partner: UNT Libraries

Three Essays on Regulatory Focus, Consumer Creativity and Co-Creation

Description: Co-creation has been conceptualized in a number of ways but is generally referred to as an ongoing partnership between a firm and stakeholders (i.e. consumers) to collaboratively identify and solve mutually beneficial issues. While current scholarship has deepened our knowledge about the process of including consumers in the co-production of value, much remains to be learned. This is particularly true with respect to the consumer behavior side of the discipline as it pertains to creativity and motivation. Thus, the focus of the following three essays is to investigate how customer participation in the ideation of products and advertising influences down-stream responses, depending upon an individual's regulatory focus. According to regulatory focus theory, individuals are motivated to pursue their goals based upon two distinct self-regulatory systems known as promotion and prevention. Promotion-focused consumers are most concerned with the achievement of accomplishments and aspirations, which often results in approach oriented behavior. In contrast, prevention focused individuals seek to avoid negative end states, such as losses, and therefore are concerned with their security, duties, and obligations, resulting in avoidance-related behavior. These two distinct motivational states influence the way these individuals approach creative goals, which shares commonalities with co-creation. By its very nature, the goal of co-creation is to develop novel output, which often requires creativity. However, the way promotion versus prevention consumers approach creativity significantly varies, and therefore, the purpose of the present research is to understand how regulatory focus interacts with co-creation across three specific contexts to influence consumer responses. Essay 1, titled "From Ordinary to Extraordinary: Using Analogies to Increase Consumer-Brand Outcomes," finds across two studies that when engaging in co-creation, promotion focused individuals have significantly greater purchase intentions if first given an analogical reasoning task prior to a co-creation activity. Prevention-focused consumers (who are often considered less creative) can also ...
Date: August 2018
Creator: Naletelich, Kelly
Partner: UNT Libraries

Saving Face: A Cross-Cultural Investigation of Retail Patronage in Consumers' Skincare Purchase Decisions

Description: The skincare sector is among the fastest growing consumer branded products, boasting unprecedented growth rates in emerging markets, as well as steady growth in developed and post-developed markets. Yet, a more relevant question to marketers of branded skincare products is what factors influence consumers’ decisions about where to buy such products, and whether or not to spread positive word-of-mouth (WOM) about products and store preferences. Sirgy’s (1982, 1985) self-congruence theory postulates that the greater the match between a consumer’s self-image and the image of a retailer’s typical patron, the greater the likelihood that the consumer will prefer and patronize that retailer. However, a review of the literature on self-image congruence shows a lack of consensus with respect to: 1) the effect of self-image congruence on retail patronage, and 2) the relative strength of the four dimensions (i.e., actual/ideal self- and social/ideal social self-image) of self-image congruence on consumer preferences and choices (e.g., Ibrahim & Najjar, 2008; Kang, Tang, Lee, & Bosselma, 2012). Further, Sirgy, Grewal, and Mangleburg (2000) suggested that the more a consumer matches a retailer’s store attributes with those of an ideal store, the more likely the consumer will prefer and patronize the retailer. Thus, an integrative model (Sirgy et al., 2000) that captures the effects of retail environment and self-image congruence on retail patronage served as the theoretical foundation of this study. The purpose of this study was to examine interactively the effects of retail environment and self-image congruence on retail shopping experience and patronage behavior of Generation Y-aged (Gen Y) consumers with respect to skincare products (i.e., a sub-sector of cosmetics). Primary data were collected through online surveys from 336 American and 325 Chinese Gen Y consumers. Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was used to test the hypothesized relationships between self-image congruence, functional congruence, retail shopping experience, ...
Date: August 2015
Creator: Dai, Bo
Partner: UNT Libraries

Size Framing: Conceptualization and Applications in Consumer Behavior

Description: Size information is vital in many consumer contexts, but currently, no central framework or conceptual model exists for a thorough understanding of the underlying process of how consumers interpret size information and form size judgments. Thus, the purpose of this three-paper dissertation is to introduce such a framework, discuss future research directions based on that framework, and pursue a few of these directions in the second and third papers, both of which focus on a vanity sizing context. The resulting work and findings illustrate the process through which consumers go in forming size judgments and collectively present both scholars and practitioners with a common basis for future study and implementation of findings in contexts in which size information is salient.
Date: August 2017
Creator: Ketron, Seth Christopher
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Quest for Perfect Appearance: an Examination of the Role of Objective Self-awareness Theory and Emotions

Description: Quality of appearance is important in nature and individuals have a basic need to establish the normality of appearance to confirm their acceptability to others. In daily inter-relationships of the same species, for instance, normal-appearing members of a species group reject or kill other members who appear abnormal. In human society, appearance is considered as one of the most direct sources of information about other people, and unattractiveness is often accompanied by negative judgments, which can cause emotional distress and isolation. Accordingly, humans tend to pay great attention to their personal appearance and make improvements to enhance their self-representations. The growth of the beauty and cosmetic surgery industries is an indication of an increasing willingness to enhance physical appearance. However, despite the growing demand for cosmetic procedures, the consumer research literature on this topic is extremely sparse. In fact, little is known about the attitudinal and motivational drivers that facilitate undergoing such procedures. This dissertation enriches our understanding of factors that affect consumers’ motivation to pursue cosmetic procedures and examines the role of emotions in such decisions. To that end, objective self-awareness (OSA) theory is applied and the interplay between the state of public OSA, beauty standards, and self-conscious emotions of shame and pride is explored. The results of two experimental studies indicate that access to beauty standards coupled with the state of public OSA generates self-standard comparison thoughts that may yield self-standard discrepancies. Negative emotions experienced due to such discrepancies move individuals into a self-regulatory cycle with the purpose of discrepancy reduction and impact their motivation to undergo cosmetic procedures. Pride and shame, two central self-conscious emotions, influence self-regulatory strategies and differently impact the approach to discrepancy reduction. These findings contribute to the research advocating the role of emotions in decision making and provide more insights about self-conscious emotions ...
Date: August 2012
Creator: Yazdanparast Ardestani, Atefeh
Partner: UNT Libraries

Nonprofit Advertising and Behavioral Intention: the Effects of Persuasive Messages on Donation and Volunteerism

Description: Nonprofit organizations are dependent on donations and volunteers to remain operational. Most rely on persuasive communications to inform, educate, and convince recipients of their messaging to respond in order to raise funds and generate volunteers. Though the marketing and psychology literature has examined charitable giving and volunteerism, the effectiveness of persuasive messages to affect philanthropy, gift-giving, and fundraising is a gap in the cause marketing literature (Dann et al. 2007). Because consumers rarely enter a situation without preexisting attitudes or beliefs, it is expected that individuals exposed to an advertisement by a nonprofit organization will look for ways to compare the messages within the ad to their own beliefs and attitudes. Two theories help explain the processing that takes place in relation to attitudes, beliefs, and persuasive communications – elaboration likelihood model (ELM) and the theory of planned behavior (TPB). The research presented here combines these theories to answer questions regarding behavioral intention related to donating and volunteering when individuals are exposed to certain persuasive messages from a nonprofit organization. Results show that one’s involvement with the advertisement combines with one’s attitude toward donating to help determine propensity to donate and the amount of the donation. However, this is dependent upon the message in the ad. When messages indicate that others are supportive of the cause, donations increase when one is more involved with the ad and is generally agreeable to donating. But these messages have the opposite effect when one is not involved with the ad – donations decrease when the message indicates others support the cause. And when messages indicate that even a minimal donation is possible, the attitude driver has no effect on donation behavior. However, when involvement is low, one’s age plays a role in driving individuals toward action, with older people more driven to give ...
Date: August 2013
Creator: Van Steenburg, Eric
Partner: UNT Libraries

Social Exclusion and Green Consumption

Description: Social exclusion has garnered much attention from researchers across the social sciences, especially among social psychologists. However, given the fact that social relationships and consumption are two of the central activities in daily life, there is surprisingly little research on the impact of social connection threats within the realm of consumer behavior. This study examines the effect of social exclusion on proenvironmental behavior and green consumption. More precisely, the objectives of this study are threefold. The first objective is to examine whether the findings in social psychology literature on how excluded individuals respond to exclusion when they are exposed to proenvironmental consumption behavior. The second objective of this research is to find the underlying mechanism and to rule out some of the possible explanations (e.g., mood) for this effect. The final objective of this study is to establish some of the boundary conditions (individual differences and situational factors) for the proposed effect. The hypotheses of this study were developed based on two main theoretical bases borrowed from social psychology literature: empathy-altruism hypothesis (Batson 1991) and social reconnection hypothesis (Maner et al. 2007). Overall, it was proposed that while social exclusion decreases individuals’ inclination to engage in proenvironmental activities, socially excluded people are motivated to use green consumption behaviors to establish new social bonds with others. These propositions were tested and supported across four experiments. Across these experiments, the findings demonstrated that social exclusion causes people to express lower tendency to engage in proenvironmental behaviors. The findings also consistently suggest that mood does not explain why social rejection leads to negative environmental outcomes. Additionally, social exclusion appears to cause a temporary absence of empathic concern toward others, which leads to less green behavior with altruistic motivation. Further, the role of emotional empathy as a boundary condition was tested in this study ...
Date: August 2013
Creator: Naderi, Iman
Partner: UNT Libraries

Phantom Menace: the Effect of Narcissism on Word-of-mouth Communications

Description: Previous empirical research and anecdotal accounts suggest that “subclinical narcissism” or “average Joe’s narcissism” is one of the most prevalent social phenomena in many parts of the world. Research also suggests that there will be an unprecedented escalation “in average Joe narcissists” among future generations of consumers. The objective of this study is two-fold. The first objective of this study is to explore the moderating effect of the individual’s level of narcissistic personality on their word-of-mouth (WOM) communications. The second objective of this study is to explore the boundary conditions of the first objective. The data were collected from a large number of consumers through Amazon Mechanical Turk. The results support many of the hypotheses accordant with the characteristics of the subclinical narcissistic individual. Specifically, the moderating effect of an individual’s level of narcissistic personality trait on the decision to engage in different types of WOM communications varies across the tested contexts. This study is intended to respond to social scientists' recent call for studies that investigate the fundamental motives behind the individual’s propensity to engage in WOM communication as a function of individual characteristics. The results of this study provide some prescriptive guidance to help companies target appropriate consumers to increase the effectiveness of WOM communication. In addition, this study explores the effect of individual and contextual differences on consumers’ willingness to engage in different types of WOM communication.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Ngamsiriudom, Waros
Partner: UNT Libraries

No-thought Shopping: Understanding and Controlling Nonconscious Processing in Marketing

Description: This dissertation explores how nonconscious thought processing might be affected and activated in ways that influence consumer decision making. To activate nonconscious thought processes, this dissertation relies on priming—the unobtrusive activation of mental representations by stimuli in a social context, which occurs without participants' conscious awareness. Three dimensions of consumer decision making are investigated: purchase intention, product evaluation and arousal. The dissertation is based on the auto-motive model of nonconscious goal pursuit and somatic marker hypothesis. The dissertation is driven by three experiments, which respectively explore crucial areas in priming effects and addresses the following research question: can primes be shaped or controlled by marketers? Specifically, the dissertation examines whether shopping behavior can be primed. Second, the dissertation also examines how facial primes displaying basic emotions (happiness, anger, contempt, disgust, fear, sadness, and surprise) can prime emotion and arousal. Finally the dissertation examines the effect of the interaction of the buying prime with the primes of faces displaying basic emotions on the dependent variables of purchase intention, product evaluation, emotion, and arousal. Results from three experimental studies show that shopping behavior can be primed, and primed participants will exhibit higher product evaluation than those exposed to a control prime. Second while exposing participants to primes of faces displaying emotions did not elicit those emotions, the priming with faces did reveal a marginal activation of arousal in the participants. Third priming with faces was not found to interact with primed buying behavior such that the interaction would affect the level of arousal. The results indicate that Bargh's auto-motive model of nonconscious goal pursuit can be applied to marketing. Thus priming shopping behavior can affect product evaluation though the effect of this prime appears to be too weak to be applied in the field. Priming with faces was found not to interact ...
Date: December 2012
Creator: Fabrize, Jr., Robert O.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Supply Chain Network Evolution: Demand-based Drivers of Interfirm Governance Evolution

Description: Which form of exchange governance performs better in a dynamic environment? This remains an unanswered question in the transaction cost analysis (TCA) and relational exchange literatures. Some researchers purport that transactional governance provides superior performance by providing firms the flexibility to change suppliers. Others suggest that relational governance leads to superior performance because of the willingness of both parties to adapt. Reviews of TCA have turned up ambivalent empirical findings with regard to the effects of uncertainty despite a track record of strong empirical support for other predictions. Because most of TCA and relational exchange theories' predictions enjoy strong support, this research builds upon these theories to propose a theoretical modeling framework for a dynamic environment in a supply chain network (SCN) setting. This dissertation extends TCA and relational exchange to a dynamic, network environment. It uses the approach of building a simulation in order to study in detail the relationship between key exchange factors and the selection of transactional and relational exchange governance over time. This research effort extended TCA theory with a complex adaptive model of supply chain network governance evolution that attempts to link environmental, network, production, firm and exchange factors in a continuously evolving loop. The proposed framework expands transaction cost analysis' explanatory power. Results partially support past scholarly proposal that uncertainty functions as an antecedent of asset specificity rather than as an independent construct affecting governance outcome dependent upon which form of uncertainty is being considered. The successful simulation of supply chain networks as complex adaptive systems shift the focus from deterministic, confirmatory models of exchange to an exploratory, positive model. Instead of exchange governance as an outcome, it is the catalyst of the evolutionary process.
Date: August 2007
Creator: Gravier, Michael J.
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Empirical Examination of Service Dominant Logic: The Theory of the Network

Description: Marketing scholars question the ability of the 4Ps to explain higher order phenomena in modern marketing. Scholars contend that marketing's historical framework, based in product centric economic theory, constrains the 4Ps ability to form a foundation for a general theory of marketing. The focus on value embedded in product fails to explain knowledge-based intangible sources of competitive advantage. In response to this concern a new dominant logic for marketing called service-dominant logic (S-D Logic) has been proposed. However, not all scholars are supportive of S-D Logic. Still nescient, S-D Logic lacks a theoretic model, operationalized constructs, and relationships between those constructs. This study addresses those deficiencies by: (1) generation of a grounded theory of a performance-oriented network; (2) empirical assessment of the S-D Logic literature; and (3) development of an inductively generated theory of S-D Logic to include constructs, relationships, outcomes, and hypothesis. This investigation provides an important set of research findings. The resultant service-oriented network theory suggests a theoretic structure for S-D Logic. Use of grounded theory provides a strong empirical foundation based in a leading edge multi-national market segment composed corporations and programs worth hundreds of billions of dollars. The analysis drew upon 44 field interviews and follow-up exchanges. Multiple member checking sessions generated practitioner confirmation of the research conclusions. The work provides actionable theoretical and practical implications. This investigation provides a link between S-D Logic as a foundation for a general theory of marketing and initial model of suggestive of such theory. For the practitioner the service-oriented network model provides actionable constructs. The antecedents identified are largely influencable by inter-firm leadership and provides them a mechanism to tailor the specific service-oriented strategy to support the desired network value propositions.
Date: August 2007
Creator: Randall, Wesley Spencer
Partner: UNT Libraries

An empirical investigation of the salient dimensions of Baby Boomer and Generation Y consumers' health care decision choices.

Description: The purpose of this research is to empirically investigate consumers' health care decision choices in a dynamic market setting. The unprecedented demands on the U.S. health care system coupled with the mounting controversies surrounding health care reform suggest that consumers' health care decisions warrant empirical research attention. Toward this end, this dissertation empirically explored (1) the characteristics of consumers who possess a willingness to use non-conventional treatments over conventional treatments, (2) the characteristics of consumers who elect self-medication in lieu of health care practitioner-directed medication, and (3) the salient dimensions of consumers' channel choice for the procurement of health care products. Each of these decision choice factors were tested across two U.S. generational segments to assess whether differences existed across Baby Boomers' and Gen Yers' health care decision choices. The conceptual framework for empirical assessment is Bandura's (1986) social cognitive theory. From Bandura's social cognitive theory, a general model of healthcare decision choice is proposed to assess consumers' states of mind, states of being and states of action (decision choice). Results indicate that social cognitive factors (e.g., self-efficacy, objectivism) play an important role in each of the decision domains explored in this dissertation. Moreover, health value was found to be an important moderator between the social cognitive factors and health care decision choices. The predictors of the health care decision choices were found to vary across the Baby Boomers and Generation Yers on several dimensions, confirming the notion that generational differences may be a salient dimension of consumers' health care decision choice. The research offers several implications for practitioners, academicians and policy makers. Both descriptive and normative implications are gleaned from the research findings. Most notably, the results indicate that consumers' social cognitive factors and health value may be mechanisms for managing health care decisions.
Date: August 2006
Creator: Krishnankutty Nair Rajamma, Rajasree
Partner: UNT Libraries

Symbolic visuals in advertising: The role of relevance.

Description: Relevance has been applied to various conditions in the marketing literature but no single definition has been developed. A single clear definition will be helpful to researchers investigating relevance in the marketing and consumer behavior fields. Confusion also exists in the literature regarding to what extent a symbolic visual in an advertisement is relevant. Many researchers are also calling for empirical evidence of a linkage between relevance and response through a theoretical measure of relevance. The central theory used in this dissertation is Sperber and Wilson's (1995) theory of relevance (TOR). TOR can help researchers and marketing managers by explaining how consumers may interpret visuals in advertising. TOR explains why some visuals thought to be unconnected with the product become relevant in advertising. This study makes the assertion that TOR has been underutilized and even ignored by some researchers in past marketing literature. Thus, TOR is used to provide greater explanatory power of consumers' interpretation and response to advertising visuals than what is currently realized by researchers and marketing managers. A reliable measure of relevance was developed using TOR as a foundation. Experiments were conducted to empirically test TOR and support was found for most aspects of the theory. This dissertation makes several contributions to the consumer behavior literature. These contributions include: 1) clarifying the definition of relevance in advertising, 2) developing a tentative measure of relevance, 3) providing an explanation of how non-relevant visuals produce effects expected for relevant visuals as occurred in experiments conducted by Mitchell and Olson (1981) and Miniard, Bhatla, Lord, Dickson and Unnava (1991), 4) showing how relevance of symbolic visuals in advertisements relates to specific consumer responses, and 5) offering suggestions for how the theory of relevance can be used by researchers and marketing managers to gain a better understanding of consumers' interpretation of ...
Date: August 2008
Creator: Holmes, Gary R.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Impact of Visceral Influences on Consumers' Evaluation of Weight Loss Advertising

Description: The weight loss industry has come under fire from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in recent years due to consumer claims that many firms, marketing weight loss products, are using advertisements in an attempt to deceive consumers. Illegitimate weight loss claims have created so much concern that a White Paper call-to-action to investigate misleading weight loss advertisements has been filed. Despite recent interest, little attention has been garnered concerning the understanding of why consumers respond to potentially misleading weight loss claims. Intuitively, an understanding of why consumers fall prey to weight loss claims may aid academics, practitioners, and policy makers as they make important decisions relative to the weight loss industry and its practices. This study fills that void by applying a theory of visceral influences (TVI) to the context of weight loss advertising. Loewenstein's TVI was developed to aid in explaining why consumers make decisions contrary to their long-term self-interest. Visceral influences are drive states that have a direct hedonic impact, have an effect on the relative desirability of various goods and activities, and consequently, have a strong influence over the decisions consumers make. Common visceral cues (cues associated with any reward linked to a visceral factor) include proximity of reward, vividness of reward, and visual priming. To adequately test TVI in the context of weight loss advertising, a two step approach was used. First, advertiser intent was assessed through content analysis of weight loss advertisements. Second, composite advertisements were created from the content analysis to assess subject response to visceral cues common in weight loss advertising. MANOVA results show that the presence of visceral cues affected subjects' thoughts, buying impulse, affective reaction, intentions, and product evaluation. This research makes the following contributions. First, it addresses an area of public policy where there is a need for research to ...
Date: May 2008
Creator: Amos, Clinton L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Stereotypes in Retail Print Advertising: The Effects of Gender and Physical Appearance on Consumer Perceptions

Description: The retail sector spends millions of dollars each year advertising to consumers. This is a considerable investment for companies seeking effective ways to inform and persuade the consumer. Consequently, retailers need to develop creative message strategies and tactics that will positively affect consumer attitudes. One particular tactic available to retailers is the use of a spokesperson in the advertisement. Salespersons are used in numerous advertisements and can provide key benefits to an advertiser. However, to maximize these benefits, retailers need to carefully select the spokesperson that will be most effective for their store and product. This purpose of this research is to examine the characteristics that influence consumers' perceptions of print advertisements that include a spokesperson in the advertisement. Most of the past literature concerning spokespersons has concentrated on the consumer perspective of meeting and interacting with a living, breathing person. This research seeks to use the past research on salespeople to examine the spokesperson as a cue in a print advertisement. In this perspective, the consumer views the spokesperson from a visual-only perspective. The proposed experiment will utilize print advertisements from two retail businesses. More specifically the study will investigate how consumers react if the individual viewed in the advertisement is typical (matches with their preconceived stereotype) or if the salesperson is atypical (does not match with their preconceived stereotype). This research also examines how men and women are viewed differently in the spokesperson role and how changes in physical appearance may impact consumers' perceptions. The research also studies the influence of spokesperson stereotypes on consumers' cognitive responses.
Date: December 2001
Creator: Allen, Charlotte
Partner: UNT Libraries