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Effects of Popularity Appeals in Advertising on Attitudes toward Brands

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0044823/00001

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Title: Effects of Popularity Appeals in Advertising on Attitudes toward Brands the Moderating Role of Product and Consumer Characteristics
Physical Description: 1 online resource (139 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Kim, Dae-Hee
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2012

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: advertising -- appeal -- attitude -- brand -- conformity -- popularity -- uniqueness
Journalism and Communications -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Mass Communication thesis, Ph.D.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: This dissertation investigates the effects of popularity messages, which are frequently used in advertising, but remains under-explored in academic studies. Previous literature on cue utilization suggests that consumers use extrinsic cues (e.g., price, store, warranty) to form their brand attitudes. However, few advertising studies have investigated the roles of brand popularity as a cue in forming brand attitude, even though several studies on social influence have indicated that information about popularity can significantly influence consumers’ buying behaviors. Drawing upon theories related to attitude function and social influence, the proposed study argues that the effects of popularity appeals in advertising on consumers’ responses vary in degree and direction depending on the product type (utilitarian,value-expressive, and multiple-function products) and the consumer’s individual traits (i.e., consumers’ need for uniqueness). A laboratory experiment was conducted to test the hypothesized three-way interactions among popularity appeals, product types, and consumers’ needs for uniqueness. The results reveal that popularity appeals enhance positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions for the utilitarian product, especially for consumers with low CNFU. On the other hand, the use of popularity appeal for the value-expressive product did not affect to brand attitudes and purchase intentions.For the multiple-function product, consumers with low CNFU showed positive attitudes and purchase intentions for the brands advertised with the popularity appeals; however others with high CNFU were negatively influenced by popularity appeals. This study also suggests a possibility that product involvements determine consumers’ responses toward popularity appeal in advertising. Together with implications of the research findings, limitations and directions for future research were discussed.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Dae-Hee Kim.
Thesis: Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2012.
Local: Adviser: Sutherland, John C.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2014-12-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2012
System ID: UFE0044823:00001

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0044823/00001

Material Information

Title: Effects of Popularity Appeals in Advertising on Attitudes toward Brands the Moderating Role of Product and Consumer Characteristics
Physical Description: 1 online resource (139 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Kim, Dae-Hee
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2012

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: advertising -- appeal -- attitude -- brand -- conformity -- popularity -- uniqueness
Journalism and Communications -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Mass Communication thesis, Ph.D.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: This dissertation investigates the effects of popularity messages, which are frequently used in advertising, but remains under-explored in academic studies. Previous literature on cue utilization suggests that consumers use extrinsic cues (e.g., price, store, warranty) to form their brand attitudes. However, few advertising studies have investigated the roles of brand popularity as a cue in forming brand attitude, even though several studies on social influence have indicated that information about popularity can significantly influence consumers’ buying behaviors. Drawing upon theories related to attitude function and social influence, the proposed study argues that the effects of popularity appeals in advertising on consumers’ responses vary in degree and direction depending on the product type (utilitarian,value-expressive, and multiple-function products) and the consumer’s individual traits (i.e., consumers’ need for uniqueness). A laboratory experiment was conducted to test the hypothesized three-way interactions among popularity appeals, product types, and consumers’ needs for uniqueness. The results reveal that popularity appeals enhance positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions for the utilitarian product, especially for consumers with low CNFU. On the other hand, the use of popularity appeal for the value-expressive product did not affect to brand attitudes and purchase intentions.For the multiple-function product, consumers with low CNFU showed positive attitudes and purchase intentions for the brands advertised with the popularity appeals; however others with high CNFU were negatively influenced by popularity appeals. This study also suggests a possibility that product involvements determine consumers’ responses toward popularity appeal in advertising. Together with implications of the research findings, limitations and directions for future research were discussed.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Dae-Hee Kim.
Thesis: Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2012.
Local: Adviser: Sutherland, John C.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2014-12-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2012
System ID: UFE0044823:00001


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1 EFFECTS OF POPULARITY APPEALS IN ADVERTISING ON ATTITUDES TOWARD BRANDS: THE MODERATING ROLE OF PRODUCT AND CONSUMER CHARACTERISTICS By DAE HEE KIM A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORI DA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2012

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2 2012 Dae Hee Kim

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3 To my wife, Gee Hae and my parents for making this milestone possible

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to express my tr emendous appreciation to all those who have directly and indirectly helped me to gain the knowledge, skills and information necessary to complete my dissertation. First of all, I would like to thank my chair, Dr. Sutherland. Meeting him during my executive training at the University of Florida in 2004 was likely the most fortuitous event in my entire academic career. He inspired me to pursue a doctoral degree, allowed me to become his last doctoral student, and gave me the chance to build my teaching experi ence. Most importantly, he taught me how to conduct dissertation research, from deciding upon the topic to writing the dissertation. I could never have started and done this without his valuable and warm support. Second, I also have to express a deep appr eciation to my committee members for their steadfast support. Dr. Elias contributed much of his time and effort in helping me craft the dissertation topic, guided me regarding methods, and advised on how to report the results. My transformation into a rigo rous researcher was in large part due to his wonderful mentoring and friendship. Regarding the analysis and data interpretation, Dr. Morris provided excellent insights and crucial information. Without his help, I might still be wandering in my attempts to understand and summarize the findings. Regarding the topic and theories in my dissertation, Dr. Ko was key in instilling in me confidence about the value of my study and based on his support, the tough journey of a dissertation was smoothed over. I am sinc erely appreciative of all the members of my committee for their precious input and support, which enabled a nave doctoral student to become an academic scholar. Finally, I would like to thank my wife and parents for their support, belief in me, and love.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 7 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 8 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ..................... 9 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 11 Background ................................ ................................ ................................ ............. 11 Popularity Appeal ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 16 Purpose of the Study ................................ ................................ .............................. 16 2 LITERATURE REVIEW ................................ ................................ .......................... 19 Brand Attitude ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 19 Information Processing Perspectives ................................ ............................... 20 Attitude Function Perspective ................................ ................................ ........... 22 Popularity Cue ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 24 Cue Utilization Theory ................................ ................................ ...................... 24 Brand Popularity as Extrinsic Cue ................................ ................................ .... 29 Social Influence and the Dual Effects of Popularity ................................ ................ 32 Conformity Theory ................................ ................................ ............................ 33 Distinctiveness Theory ................................ ................................ ..................... 35 Individual Differences as Moderators of Social Influence ................................ 36 Product Char acteristics as Moderators of Social Influence .............................. 37 Summary and Hypotheses ................................ ................................ ...................... 40 3 METHOD ................................ ................................ ................................ ................ 44 Overview ................................ ................................ ................................ ................. 44 Internal Validity ................................ ................................ ................................ 44 External Validity ................................ ................................ ................................ 45 Preliminary Procedures ................................ ................................ ........................... 46 Product Selection ................................ ................................ ............................. 46 Stimuli Development ................................ ................................ ........................ 49 ................................ ... 51 Main Experiment ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 52 Participants and Research Design ................................ ................................ ... 52 Procedure ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 52

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6 Dependent Measures ................................ ................................ ....................... 54 4 RESULTS ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 56 Description of Sample ................................ ................................ ............................. 56 Scale Reliability and Manipulation Checks ................................ ............................. 57 Reliability of Measures ................................ ................................ ..................... 57 Manipulation Checks ................................ ................................ ........................ 58 Hypotheses Testing ................................ ................................ ................................ 59 Test of Three way Interaction ................................ ................................ ........... 60 Test of Hypothesis 1: Utilitarian Product ................................ ........................... 61 Test of Hypothesis 2: Value expressive Product ................................ .............. 63 Test of Hypothesis 3: Multiple function Product ................................ ............... 64 Test of Hypothesis 4: Ad Recognition ................................ .............................. 66 Additional Analyses ................................ ................................ ................................ 68 5 DISCUSSION ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 97 Summary of Results ................................ ................................ ................................ 98 Interaction of Popularity Appeal, Product Type, and CNFU ............................. 98 Hypothesis 1 ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 99 Hypothesis 2 ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 99 Hypothesis 3 ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 102 Hypothesis 4 ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 104 Additional Findings ................................ ................................ ......................... 105 Implications ................................ ................................ ................................ ........... 105 Theoretical Implications ................................ ................................ .................. 107 Managerial Implications ................................ ................................ .................. 112 Limitations and Suggestions for Future Research ................................ ................ 114 Conclusion ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 118 APPENDIX A DESCRIPTION OF MULTI ITEM MEASUREMENTS ................................ ........... 120 B EXPERIMENTAL STIMULI ................................ ................................ ................... 123 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ............................. 129 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ .......................... 139

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7 LIST OF TABLES Table page 4 1 Demographics of the participants in the main experiment ................................ .. 73 4 2 Results of one way ANOVA for gender ................................ .............................. 73 4 3 Experimental group descriptions and frequencies ................................ .............. 73 4 4 Group Means of dependent measures ................................ ............................... 74 4 5 Multivariate tests of three way interaction ................................ .......................... 75 4 6 Univ ariate tests of three way interaction ................................ ............................. 76 4 7 Multivariate tests (utilitarian product) ................................ ................................ .. 77 4 8 Univariate tests (utilitarian produ ct) ................................ ................................ .... 78 4 9 Multivariate tests (value expressive product) ................................ ..................... 79 4 10 Univariate tests (value expressive product) ................................ ........................ 80 4 11 Multivariate tests (multiple function product) ................................ ...................... 81 4 12 Univariate tests (multiple function product) ................................ ........................ 82 4 13 Means of recognition score ................................ ................................ ................ 83 4 14 Effect of popularity appeal on recognition score ................................ ................. 83 4 15 Thr ee way ANOVA for recognition score ................................ ............................ 83 4 16 Multivariate analyses of involvement effects (utilitarian product) ........................ 84 4 17 Univariate analyses of involvement effects (utilitarian product) .......................... 85 4 18 Multivariate analyses of involvement effects (value expressive product) ........... 86 4 19 Univariate analyses of involvement effects (value expressive product) .............. 87 4 20 Multivariate analyses of involvement effects (multiple function product) ............ 88 4 21 Univariate analyses of involvement effects (multiple function product) .............. 89

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8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 4 1 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU on: A) Quality Perception. B) Attitude toward the Brand. C) Purchase Intention (Utilitarian Product) ............................ 90 4 2 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU on: A) Quality Perception. B) Attitude toward the Brand. C) Purchase Intention (Value Expressive Product) ............... 91 4 3 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU on: A) Quality Perception. B) Attitude towar d the Brand. C) Purchase Intention (Multiple Function Product) ................ 92 4 4 Effects of Popularity Appeal and Product Type on Advertising Recognition ....... 93 4 5 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU for: A) High Involvement Group. B) Low Involvement Group (Utilitarian Product) ................................ ...................... 94 4 6 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU for: A) High Involvement Group. B) Low Involvement Group (Value Expressive Product) ................................ ......... 95 4 7 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU for: A) High Involvement Group. B) Low Involvement Group (Multiple Func tion Product) ................................ .......... 96

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9 Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy EFFECTS OF POPULARI TY APPEALS IN ADVERTISING ON ATTITUDES TOWARD BRANDS: THE MODERATING ROLE OF PRODUCT AND CONSUMER CHARACTERISTICS By Dae Hee Kim December 2012 Chair: John C Sutherland Major: Mass Communication This dissertation investigates the effects of popularit y message s which are frequently used in advertising but remains under explored in academic studies Previous literature on cue utilization suggests that consumers u se extrinsic cues (e.g., price, store, warranty) to form their brand attitudes How ever, fe w advertising studies have investigate d the roles of brand popularity as a cue in forming brand attitude, even though several studies on social influence have indicated that information about rs. Drawing upon theories related to attitude function and social influence, the proposed study argue s that the effects of popularity appeals in advertising on consumers responses var y in degree and direction depending on the product type ( utilitarian va lue expressive and multiple function products) and individual traits ( i.e., consumers need for uniqueness). A laboratory experiment wa s conducted to test the hypothesized three way interactions among popularity appeals product types and consumers need s for uniqueness. The results reveal that popularity appeals enhance positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions for the utilitarian product, especially for consumers with low

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10 CNFU. On the other hand, the use of popularity appeal for th e value expressive product did not affect to brand attitude s and purchase intentions. For the multiple function product, consumers with low CNFU showed positive attitudes and purchase intention s for the brands advertised with the popularity appeals; howeve r others with high CNFU were negatively influenced by popularity appeal s. This study also suggests a possibility that product involvement s determine consumers responses toward popularity appeal in advertising. Together with implications of the research fi ndings, limitations and directions for future research were discussed.

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11 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Promotional messages that highlight the popularity of a product have often been used in advertising practice (Dean 1999; Hellofs and Jacobson 1999; Mishra et al 1993; Rhoades 1985). Based on the belief that a popularity message will appeal to consumers, marketers have communicated the popularity of advertised brands through advertising copy, brand slogans, press releases, product packaging, and online homepages, among other tools. Current examples Centrum: #1 Selling Multivitamin Brand, Swanson: #1 Broth, and Several theories related to attitude formation (Petty, Cacioppo, and Schumann 1983 ; Shavitt 1990), cue utilization (Olson 1972), and social influence particularly related to conformity (Asch 1951; Bearden and E tzel 1982) and uniqueness seeking (Snyder and Fromkin 1977) suggest the mechanisms about how popularity message s can affect consumers brand attitudes and choices. This chapter introduces theoretical backgrounds key concept and purpose of the present study. Backgro und T he last several decades have seen extensive investigation into consumer attitude s toward brands. The concept of brand attitude which is defined as each is considered an important predictor of c onsumer behavior in the fields of marketing and advertising (e.g. Keller 1993; MacKenzie, Lutz and Belch 1986; Mitchell and Olson 1981 ). In particular the concept of brand attitude is a crucial part of current advertising research in that it is one

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12 of t he most important outcomes of advertising practices and a key determinant of consumer purchase intentions ( Spears and Singh 2004 ) Among many research streams that identify the underlying mechanisms of how consumers form and change their attitudes toward b rands, research in the areas of consumer information processing has found that consumers form their attitude s by using extrinsic cues rather than through fully investigating the actual features of that brand. This phenomenon gains prominen ce when consumers have imperfect information and lack the ability and motivation to process brand information ( Boulding and Kirmani 1993 ; Chaiken 1980 ; Nelson 1970 ; Petty et al. 1983 ; Spence 1974 ). A dvertising research ha s shown that, in general consumers do not have suff icient motivation to process brand messages in advertising ( Krugman 1965 ; MacInnis, Moorman and Jaworski 1991) so the effects of extrinsic cues on brands has bec ome one of the most important topics in several areas including a dvertising research A number of academic domain s have investigated the effects of external cues on consumer behaviors. For example, in persuasion research, a series of empirical studies (e.g. Petty et al. 1983 ) revealed that consumers form their brand a ttitude s by applying the characteristics of message endorsers as a peripheral cue. Another stream of research (e.g. Sirgy 1982) has shown that consumers form their attitudes toward brands based on the images of typical users of th ose brands. However the area w ith the most extensive investigat ion into the effects of extrinsic cues is cue utilization research, which stem s from research on the relations hip between price and perceptions of product quality. Many numbers of c ue utilization studies have continuo usly demonstrated that consumers judge product qualities through external cues including

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13 price (e.g. Leavitt 1954), brand name ( e.g. Allison and Uhl 1964), store image ( e.g. Szybillo and Jacoby 1974 ) and advertising ( Kirmani and Wright 1989; Nelson 19 74 ). S cholars in economics, sociology, marketing, and other areas have argued that, similar to other extrinsic cues, the popularity of a brand serves as a cue in attitude formation and behavioral choice ( Becker 1991; Caminal and Vives 1996; Raj 1985 ). How ever, in spite of numbers of theoretical arguments and frequent use in advertising practice, there remains a lack of theoretical and empirical knowledge about the effects of popularity appeals in advertising as an extrinsic cue for consumers attitudes tow ard brands. This deficient knowledge regarding popularity cues stems in part from the scant numbers of empirical studies conducted on the subject most of which have proposed popularity effects using conceptual arguments without empirical support. In addit ion the existing empirical work (Dean 1999; Hellofs and Jacobson 1999; Dean and Lang 2005) draws inconsistent conclusions about the effects of popularity messages, suggesting several boundary conditions of the popularity effects Further, p ast research ha s focused separately on either product types ( Bearden and Etzel 1982 ) or consumer characteristics ( Snyder and Fromkin 1977 ) as moderating variables of popularity effects. However, due to the lack of empirical studies that investigated the combined effects of these two moderating variables, less is known about when and how popularity appeal works under which conditions. Another reason for the deficient knowledge regarding popularity cues is that most empirical work on brand popularity ha s focused on demonstr ating the effects of popularity cues rather than investigating their underlying mechanisms. For example, recent studies ( Hanson and Putler 1996 ; Huang and Chen 2006 ; Salganik, Dodds, and Watts 2006) about online consumer behaviors

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14 demonstrate d the effects of popularity but did not examine the mechanisms under lying these demonstrated effects. Finally and perhaps most important previous literature has largely paid little attention to the distinctive characteristics of brand popularity as a social cue against other extrinsic cues that are components of marketing (e.g. price, brand name, store image, advertising). In sum, the current academic knowledge is still insufficient to allow the effects of popularity cue s to be theorized so any theoretical suggestions offered to marketing practitioners are incomplete. Further, most studies on cue utilization have focused heavily on enhanced quality perceptions as a single unidirectional and positive effect of extrinsic cues. However, unlike some other extrinsic cues as positive indicators of product quality, brand popularity can signal multiple meanings including higher quality, social acceptance, and loss of uniqueness (Hellofs and Jacobson 1999). Th erefore multiple mechanisms can a ffect ct on consumers brand attitudes in terms of the degrees and directions of th os e effects. The l iterature on social influence and the stream of attitude research provide valuable theoretical frameworks for the distinctive mechanisms of the effects of brand popularity. T he social influence studies concerning conformity behaviors (e.g. Asch 1951; Burnkrant and Cousineau 1975; Deutsch and Gerard 1955) suggest that the effects of popularity can affect brand attitude positively through informational and normati ve influences. On the other hand, studies on individual pursuits of distinctiveness (or uniqueness) suggest that there may be negative effects of popularity on brand attitude (e.g. Brewer 1991, Snyder and Fromkin 1977). In attempt to resolve these oppos ite effects of popularity, one stream of social influence research focused on

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15 demonstrating individual traits (e.g. differences in susceptibility to interpersonal influence and need for uniqueness) as a determinant of these opposite effects (Bearden, Nete meyer and Tell 1989; Tian, Bearden and Hunter 2001) The other stream of research based on theories of attitude function (Katz 1960) focused on the characteristics of advertised products as the determin ant of the directions of popularity effects (Berger a nd Heath 2007; 2008) Theories about the functions of attitudes argue that individuals attitudes have psychological functions that serve several motivations including maximization of utilitarian benefits (utilitarian product ) and expression of self ident ity (value expressive product ). From this perspective, the product characteristic (utilitarian or value expressive) is one of the determinants of attitude, and the effectiveness of advertising is determined by the match between attitude ( based on the produ ct characteristic s) and the advertising claim (Shavitt 1990; Shavitt and Nelson 2002). Therefore, because attitudes toward utilitarian products (e.g. an air conditioner) are formed based on utilitarian benefits, popularity information in advertising can s erve as a quality cue with positive effects to brand attitude. On the other hand in the case of value expressive products (e.g. a wedding ring), a popularity message may signal the loss of distinctiveness and uniqueness. Berger and Heath ( 2007) found th at consumers preferences for brands chosen by other majorities could be changed depending on whether the product characteristic is identity relevant or not. In sum, previous studies in attitude function conformity behavior and need for uniqueness facil itate theoretical predictions of the degrees and directions of popularity effects in advertising.

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16 Popularity Appeal on the subjective desirability of the brand. Ac cording to a preliminary definition offered in studies have operationalized brand or market rank (Dean and Lang 2008; Hanson and Putler 1996; Raj 1985). In advertising, brand popularity has been often presented by providing facts or da claims are based on actual data, appeals to brand popularity are different from pufferies in advertising. In some cases, brand popular ity becomes part of advertising copy, and in other cases, it is presented as a brand slogan. In advertising practice, communicating brand popularity aims to have a normative or informational social influence on rs. that are designed to positively influence consumer responses toward the advertised brand by providing objective information about the high volume of user share, market rank, or number of users of the advertised brand. Purpose of the Study The proposed dissertation applies academic finding about popularity effects in several areas specifically to advertising, and investigate consumer responses toward popularity appeals For se veral theoretical and practical reasons, it is important to build knowledge about the effects of popularity appeals First, increased competition in the

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17 current market and the technological advances in product development have led consumers to rely increas ingly on extrinsic cues when they form their brand attitudes ( Nelson 1970 ). Second, the popularity claim is a common practice in advertising in many product categories ( Dean 1999; Mishra, Umesh and Stem 1993; Rhoades 1985), although theoretical suggestions from academic research about the value and the effects of this claim have been limited and have not been integrated. The third reason for study ing popularity effects is that, in the current marketplace, consumers can gain access to information about brand popularity by using online media more readily than at any time in the past (Hanson and Putler 1996; Zhu and Zhang 2010). The overall purpose of this dissertation is to examine how the popularity cue affect s brand attitudes. S ocial influence perspectives and the functional approach to attitude formation will be applied to investigate the theoretical mechanisms of the different patterns of popularity effects. The specific goal of this dissertation is to demonstrate the differential effects of popularity app eals in advertising on brand attitudes depending on both product and consumer characteristics To achieve th is goal, an experimental research study will be conducted to test effects hypothesized through an extensive literature review. Findings from the s tudy will be significant in several streams of academic research by increasing the precision of theoretical knowledge about popularity effects. The findings from this study can provide new empirical evidence to the literature on attitude function through t he use of peripheral cues. T he popularity cue can also become a valuable addition to cue utilization studies by suggesting a number of theoretical implications. Finally the empirical demonstration of popularity effects can stimulate

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18 further investigation in related fields, especially in advertising by providing a theoretical groundwork for the study of popularity messages.

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19 CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW Brand Attitude In attitude studies, it has been popular to quote claim regarding the co most distinctive and indispensable concept in (p. 15). learned predisposition to respond in a consistently favorable or unfavorable manner with respect to a give n Fishbein and Ajzen 1975, p. 6) and also as tendency that is expressed by evaluating a particular entity with some degree of favor or Eagly and Chaiken 1993 p. 1). This concept of attitude has been populariz ed, together with its academic assumptions and also certain empirical demonstrations of attitude behavior relations (Ajzen and Fishbein 1977; Fazio and Carol 1986). Likewise, a s an important predictor of consumer behaviors, attitude has been adopted widely in applied research that includ es marketing consumer and, especially, advertising research, the primary roles of which are to persuade consumers and form favorable attitude s toward brands (Keller 1993; MacKenzie, Lutz and Belch 1986; Mitchell and Olson 1981; Spears and Singh 2004). Attitude toward brand the focus of this study, Mitchell and Olson 1981). Since this conceptualization, attitude toward brand has beco me a variable that is routinely used in advertising research and ongoing academic endeavors have focused on investigating the precise causal determinants of attitude toward brand (Olson and Mitchell 1975; also see Lutz 1977; Lutz and Bettman 1977 ; Spears and Singh 2004 ). throughout numerous paradigmatic streams of academic research (For recent reviews

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20 see Albarrac n and Vargas 2009; Bohner and Dickel 2011) The f ollowing sections thus review two im portant research streams of attitude formation (or change) directly linked with advertising studies on persuasion mechanisms and relevant to the context of the present study on popularity effect. The first stream focuse s on individuals cognitive processin g drawn by exposure to information (e.g. advertising message s ) about objects (e.g. a brand). The second stream is based on the motivational functions of attitude and the effects on attitude formation. Information Processing Perspectives Many scholars have tried to determine the cognitive mechanisms that will explain how people come to like or dislike a certain brand. A classical account suggest s that consumers form their attitudes toward a brand through cognitive integration of their separate evaluations of multi attributes associated with that brand ( Fishbein and Ajzen 1975 ). Specifically, this account considers brand attitudes as a weighted average related to a brand and its quality (Zeit haml 1988) However, it had continuously found that, in many situations, consumers tended not to spend much cognitive resources on process ing brand information. Explaining the low involvement of consumers in processing persuasive message s several scholars (e.g. Chaiken 1980 ; Greenwald and Leavitt 1984 ; Petty et al. 1983) made significant contributions to knowledge of attitude formation by arguing that consumers use different mechanisms to process a persuasive message and these depend on motivations, abili ties, and opportunities ( Batra and Ray 1986). Specifically, these theories d emonstrate that if consumers possess enough motivations, abilities, and opportunities to process brand information they are more likely to be engaged in elaborated processing. In other cases, however, when

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21 consumers do not possess motivations, abilities, and opportunities, they depend on their past experience (called heuristic by Chaiken 1980 ) or external cues (called peripheral cues by Petty et al. 1983) to form their attitudes to ward the brand. For example, consumers in low involvement conditions may use an expert endorser (Petty et al. 1983) or background music (Park and Young 1986) in advertising as a cue, and thus form a positive attitude toward the brand. This dual processing perspective has bec o me one of the dominant paradigms in attitude research by suggesting important roles of peripheral cue in processing persuasive information. In fact, the idea of u sing cues to form attitudes has been considered important ly in other acade mic areas not limited to the domain of involvement research. In economics, it is posited that consumer information processing is naturally imperfect due to inequality of product information between consumers and manufacturers, so manufacturers need to sig nal their superiority over competitors by using cues (e.g. high price) that consumers utilize (Nelson 1970) Marketing studies have argued that p roducts are co mposed of an array of cues that serve as surrogate indicators of quality to consumers (Cox 1967; Olson 1972) Also, advertising studies have suggested that consumers tend to be little involve d when they process brand information, including advertising; thus, the strategic use of peripheral cues (e.g. an endorser in advertising) is a crucial factor tha t can determine the effectiveness of that advertising (Krugman 1965) In results, understanding the effects of peripheral cues became an important area in advertising studies. Major theories and empirical work related to cue utilization are thus summarized in the following section.

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22 Attitude Function Perspective Another stream of attitude research focuse s on the functional roles of attitude. Proposing the functional approach to attitude study, Katz (1960) argue s that the reasons for holding or for changing attitudes are found in the functions they perform for the individual (p. 163). In other words, attitudes function to serve a variety of psychological goals. Katz list s four major functions of attitude namely, adjustment (utilitarian), ego defense, value expression, and knowledge. Later, most academic research has focused on utilitarian and value expressive functions due to theoretical and methodological concerns related to ego defense and knowledge functions (Spivey, Munson and Locander 1983). According to Katz s conceptualization, the utilitarian function of attitude serves to maximize the utilit y obtained from objects. Therefore, attitude guide s individuals behavioral responses in a direction t hat maximize s their interests. Otherwise, the value express ive function of attitude will help individuals to construct and express their own self identity. Because individuals build and express their identity based on their relation with others, value expressive attitude serve a social role that will affect one s interactions with others. The functional interpretation of attitudes suggests that individual attitude toward an object is formed based on which function or motives that attitude serves for each individual. Empirical works based on this functional approa ch focused on identifying determinants of attitude function including individual traits and characteristics of attitude objects. In terms of individual traits, Snyder and DeBono (1985) found that different degrees of individual self monitoring, the psycho logical tendency to fit into a presumed and desired social environment, can lead to different uses of attitude function. In these results, it was shown that individuals with high self monitor ing who are also concerned

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23 more about social image, preferred im age driven advertising, whereas low self monitors who were more oriented toward their own feelings and judgment, preferred advertising that made quality claims. In a similar vein, Johar and Sirgy (1991) conceptualized the view that value expressive adverti sing would be more effective for those consumers with high self monitoring, and utilitarian advertising would be more persuasive for consumers with low self monitoring. Another research program on attitude function focused on the characteristics of attitud e objects as the determinants of attitude function. Shavitt (1990) argue s that some objects are primarily associated with a specific type of attitude function. In her empirical work, when individuals described the reasons for their attitude toward utilitar ian objects or products (e.g. air conditioners) they focused on product features, attributes, benefits, and risks. However, when they reasoned on their attitude s toward value expressive objects or products (e.g. wedding ring), individuals listed more thoug hts that related to other s opinion s social implications of the attitude, and one s own value system. A further study (Shavitt, Lowrey and Han 1992) revealed an interaction effect between individual traits and object characteristics on the orientation o f attitude functions Specifically, the effects of self monitoring as an individual trait were not significant to types of advertising argument s when the attitude function s toward these products w ere primarily oriented with a single function that was eithe r utilitarian or value expressive. However, when the attitude toward products w as based on multiple functions (e.g. car), high self monitoring individuals preferred advertising with a value expressive appeal, whereas low self monitors preferred a utilitari an claim. In sum, the

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24 main theoretical argument of attitude function referred to as a matching hypothesis is that messages will be persuasive to the extent that they match the functional p. 137). Both perspectives information processing and attitude function offer significant implications to understand the effects of claiming brand popularity in advertising. First, attitude theories in information processing suggest that in many cases c onsumers use peripheral cues to form brand attitude rather than relying on actual product attributes. Thus, the advertising message about brand popularity, if it serves as a cue, can affect consumer attitude toward brands. Second, theories of attitude func tion imply that attitude functions that individual consumers appl y when processing popularity may affect to the effects of popularity appeals. Popularity Cue In the most basic sense, making a brand popular by selling it to many consumers is one of the pri mary goals of marketing; in turn, brand popularity is the marketing outcome drawn from consumer behaviors, including attitude toward the brand and choice behaviors. However, there are feedback effects that suggest that brand popularity can have a reverse i nfluence on consumer behavior (Becker 1991; Caminal and Vives 1996; Hellofs and Jacobson 1999; Raj 1985). This section, therefore, reviews the theories of cue utilization as potential mechanisms of popularity effects together with several arguments and fin dings on popularity effects. Cue Utilization Theory In social psychology, the term cue has been used for studies on impression formation since the 19 6 0s. Those studies show that people tend to form impressions about others by using cues, for example, age a nd occupation ( Kogan and and Shelton

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25 1960 ) and style of dress (Hamid 1968). In a similar vein, scholars in economy and marketing use comparable terms, such as indice (Scitovsky 1945), meaning (Leavitt 1954), and signal (Spence 1974) to refer to product pri ce as an indicator of product quality. The concept of cue and its utilization was popularized in marketing studies conducted by Cox (1967) and Olson (1972), who argue that products consist of an array of cues that serve as surrogate indicators of quality t o consumers. In the theories on cue utilization, cues that are associated with a product are defined as those factors that correlate with a specific product dimension or attribute (Cox 1967). The basic argument regarding theories of cue utilization is that consumers are imperfect at processing product information, so they tend to rely on available cues to evaluate product s and thus make their brand choices (Boulding and Kirmani 1993; Kardes, Posavac and Cronley 2004; Richardson, Dick and Jain 1994). A grou p of scholars (Cox 1967; Olson 1972; Olson and Jacoby 1972) provided theoretical frames to following studies on cue utilization by distinguishing types of cues, and also by introducing specific concepts related to the usefulness of individual cues. With re gard to the different types of cues, these researchers dichotomized diverse cues into intrinsic and extrinsic cues The intrinsic cue is part of the physical product, while the extrinsic cue is not. Thus, if there is a change in the intrinsic cues (e.g., i ngredients), then the product has physically changed. Conversely, the product is views as not physically changed, when there are changes in extrinsic cues (e.g., price). Prior investigations of cue utilization h av e focused more on extrinsic cues than intri nsic cues. Specifically, the previously studied extrinsic cues include price (Leavitt 1954), brand name (Allison and Uhl 1964), color (Olson 1972), store image (Szybillo and Jacoby

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26 1974), advertising (Kirmani and Wright 1989; Nelson 1974), packaging (McDan iel and Baker 1977), country of origin (Hong and Wyer 1989), warranty (Boulding and Kirmani 1993), brand alliance (Rao, Qu, and Rueker 1999), and web site design (Schlosser, White, and Lloyd 2006 ). I n terms of cue usefulness, Cox (1967) suggested two conce pts, predictive value and confidence value as determinants for whether or not a cue is used by a consumer to judge product quality. Olson (1972) defined the predictive value pro confidence value example, based on these definitions, predictive value of price is high when a consume r thinks that price accurately indicates the quality of a product. Confidence value of price will be high if a consumer is confident in his or her ability to perceive and evaluate differences in products in terms of their prices. Olson (1972) argues that c onsumers will use a cue to evaluate products only when the predictive and confidence values of that product are both high. Since the seminal writings (Leavitt 1954; Scitovsky 1945) were published about price quality relations, a series of empirical studies have demonstrated the effects of (1989) conducted a meta analysis of 36 studies with 85 effects of price, brand name, or store name on quality perceptions. This analysis of fered several theoretical and methodological findings. First, the effects of price on quality perceptions were not different between cases where price was a single cue in the study experiments and those where the price was presented along with other cues ( e.g., brand name and store

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27 name). Second, the association between price level and size of effect on quality perception was not significant. Further, the third and fourth results related to methodological issues that showed the effectiveness of within subje ct designs and strong price manipulations. Vlckner and Hofmann (2007) conducted a follow up study with analyzing 23 additional studies published after the prior meta analysis (Rao and Monroe 1989). This new study confirmed several of the findings from th e prior work and added new findings. First, as in the prior study, the number of cues does not affect the relation between price and perceived quality. Second, in this study for more studies that used highly priced products, the price level of the product significantly and positively related to the price perceived quality effect. This finding, not significant in the previous study, suggests the possibility that consumers tend to rely on cues more heavily when they purchase relatively expensive products. Thi rd, as in the previous study, within subjects design produced greater effects. Fourth, price manipulations had no significant effects on price perceived quality relations. Fifth, this study found that consumer familiarity with the test product negatively a ssociated with the effect size of price perceived quality relations. This result implies that predictive value and the diagnosticity of extrinsic cues (e.g., price) will decrease when consumers are familiar with a certain kind of product, in other words, w hen consumers are able to evaluate products without relying on an external cue. Sixth, this study suggests the possibility of individual differences in cue utilization. Specifically, studies using European subjects generated greater effects than those on N uncertainty avoidance (Hofstede 2003) may have caused this difference. Lastly, this

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28 meta analysis drew another important finding that predictive value and diagnosticity of a ce rtain cue are different, depending on the product categories. Predictive value was higher in fast moving consumer goods, especially for subjects with low familiarity with test products, than for durable goods and services. In sum, these two meta analysis s tudies showed that cue effects are moderated by various factors, including the price level of a product, product familiarity, individual difference, and product type. In recent years, one of the primary interests in studying price perceived quality relatio ns has been to identify the conditions under which consumers utilize cues to evaluate products (Bornemann and Homburg 2011). An experimental study (Suri and Monroe 2003), which put time pressure on the experimental groups to evaluate brands, showed that co nsumers rely more on cues when they lack the ability to process brand information in a systematic manner. Another study (Kardes, Cronley, Kellaris, and Posavac 2004) demonstrated that consumers with low levels of involvement in the test product will use pr ice as their extrinsic cue to judge product quality. These results are consistent with the conceptualization about cue utilization as a form of low involvement processing in attitude research ( Chaiken 1980; Greenwald and Leavitt 1984; Petty et al. 1 983 ). M ore recently, two similar studies (Bornemann and Homburg 2011; Yan and Sengupta 2011) applied construal level theory (Trope and Liberman 2003) to the context of consumer price perception. The results from both studies show consistently that price is a qual ity cue when consumers feel psychologically distant from the target brands, because price is global and also a core attribute for product judgment. An interesting perspective in these studies is dual interpretations exist for the consumer

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29 centric meaning o f price as a quality cue and also as a monetary sacrifice. In other words, consumers consider the aspect of price as a quality cue to more important in certain situations (e.g., psychologically distant), and yet they still think more about price as the amo unt they will have to sacrifice in other situations (e.g., psychologically close). These results suggest that a single cue can have multiple meanings and also different effects on consumer attitude. Brand Popularity as Extrinsic Cue A cademic researchers ha ve constantly argued that brand popularity (or information about a brand market share) can serve as an extrinsic cue that affects consumer behavior, especially the perception of product quality, which acts just like price and other quality cues. In econo mic studies that considered consumers as being imperfectly informed, Smallwood and Conlisk (1979) argue that widespread acceptance of a brand serves as information that its quality is superior to other brands with fewer acceptances. When studying the advan tages of market leadership, Rhoades (1985) said that consumers may use a heuristic 349). Becker (1991) provided a modeling that reflected that high volumes of current demand, or popularity, positively rela te to following demands of other consumers. I nclud ing market share as a component in his brand equ ity model Aaker (1996) suggests that brand popularity Although there have been num erous theoretical arguments about popularity effects, little research to date has focused on empirical investiga tions on the effects of the popularity (or market share) cue on consumer behavior and the underlying

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30 mechanisms that produce these effects Moreover, the empirical results from existing studies on popularity cues have not been consistent with the nave ass umption that merely posits the positive relations between popularity (or market share) and consumer perception about the brand and its quality. Applying several potential mechanisms, including network externality and signaling, Hellofs and Jacobson (1999) conducted two other studies, one with modeling using market data and the other, an experiment. Surprisingly, their modeling study on periodical market share and consumer quality perception data showed that, on average, market share negatively associates to quality perception. These negative relations were more prominent in those product categories where people have greater concerns about exclusivity. However, the authors did identify three characteristics of products that shifted the popularity effects to p ositive: (1) products that people have more concerns about for widespread acceptance; (2) premium priced brands; and (3) products whose quality is hard to evaluate. In these cases, increasing market share led to an increase in perceived quality. The resea sunscreen is significantly higher when it is advertised with a 40% market share compared to 3%. These findings strongly suggest that popularity claims will have different effects on consum ers and brands, depending on the product types and the characteristic of different brands. Indeed, brand popularity can be interpreted differently based on its dual meaning, namely, the indicator of quality versus the loss of exclusivity. This issue will b e reviewed extensively in the following section. In an advertising study, Dean (1999) manipulated three advertising cues third party product endorser, brand popularity, and event sponsorship in print

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31 advertisements for a fictitious television brand. Altho ugh he found significant effects of third party product endorser and event sponsorship on multiple dependent variables, including perception of product quality, uniqueness, and manufacturer esteem, the manipulation of brand popularity did not produce any s ignificant results. The author explained this unexpected finding as an outcome from high levels of product knowledge and involvement about the test product, a television, among the experiment participants. Later, Dean and Lang (2006) conducted a similar st as a stimulus, which was an unfamiliar product for the experiment participants, undergraduate students. In this study, the effects of brand popularity, which was ly positive in terms of anticipated satisfaction, the primary dependent variable in the study. Contradictory results in two studies are consistent with cue uti lization theory, which predicts Another empirical effort (Desarbo, Kim, Choi, and Spaulding 2002) with a cription products are heavily influenced not only by the distance of the brand from an ideal point but also by market share. This result implies that enhanced perception of quality may not be a sole mechanism of popularity effects on brand attitude. Recent ly, several online marketplaces, where information about brand popularity (e.g., download counts or sales ranking) is readily available. Those studies show that popularity i nformation can lead to behavioral information for example, software, downloads (Hanson and Putler

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32 1996), music downloads (Salganik, Dodds and Watts 2006) and book choice (Huang and Chen 2006). These studies show that the effects of popularity cues can be strong for experiential goods, whose qualities are difficult to judge without direct consumption ( Nelson 1 970 ) As the underlying mechanisms of popularity effects in online environments, the authors proposed several theories including herding ( Banerjee 1 9 92), conformity behavior (Asch 1 951), and influence of reference group ( Bearden and E tzel 1 982). However, the above studies focused on demonstrating popularity effects rather than theoretically examining the potential mechanisms underlying the popularity e ffects. In sum, the above studies show that brand popularity can serve as a cue in forming brand attitude, and the directions and strengths of popularity effect can be moderated by both product type s and individual differences in product knowledge and inv olvement However, those studies focused on demonstrating popularity effects rather than investigating their underlying mechanisms and the moderating variables of popularity effects. The following section reviews social influence as the underlying mechanis m of popularity effects together with the dual meanings of popularity that can cause differential effects of popularity claims. Social Influence and the Dual Effects of Popularity In the previous studies the t heories of social influence are frequently dis cussed as the underlying mechanism of popularity effects (Caminal and Vives 1996; Dean 1999; Hellofs and Jacobson 1999; Mishra et al. 1993; Zhu 7 Zhang 2010) As a matter of fact, popularity represents the aggregated outcomes of other s choice behaviors. Therefore, when consumers are exposed to information about brand popularity they tend to infer other s judgments, evaluations and attitudes about a brand. In turn, these inference s can influence individuals judgments, evaluations and attitudes toward a brand through

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33 the mechanisms found in social influence, sometimes referred to specifically as interpersonal group or reference group influence. Further, research on several areas of social influence provides theoretical accounts about the possibil ity of the dual interpretation of popularity either as a quality cue or the loss of exclusivity. This section reviews two different social motives, conformity and distinctiveness, as potential mechanisms of the duel effect of popularity cue, and personal a nd product factors that may influence popularity effects through two distinctive motives. Conformity Theory Through a seminal work on social influence study, Asch (1951) demonstrated conformity behaviors by showing that some individuals follow the opinions of the majority, even when that opinion is contradictory to their own opinion. Several marketing studies applied the findings from Asch study and found similar results in the contexts of product evaluations and choices. For example, Venkatesan (1966) sh owed that consumers tend to evaluate the quality of clothes by following the prior evaluations made by other consumers. F rom three suits that are identical consumers tend to pick the clothes previously selected as the best quality by the majority of other consumers. Afterward, conformity studies focused on identifying different types of mechanisms that influence consume conformity to other opinions and choices. One of the first differentiation s for types of social influence was the work of Deutsch and Gerard (1955) whose dichotomiz ation of social influence into normative and informational influence d individual judgments. They defined normative social influence as an influence to conform to the positive expectations of another, and informational s ocial influence as an influence to accept information obtained from another as evidence about reality (p. 629). Kelman (1958) proposed three different processes for attitude

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34 change caused by social influence. First, individuals sometimes change their at titude s to acquire a positive reaction from another person or group. This process is called compliance. The second process is called identification, and it occurs when individuals change their attitude s to create or maintain a desired self concept that is closely associated with another person or a group. T he third process internalization explains those situations when people change their attitude s based on the belie f that others opinion s or choice s a re valid information, judgment s, or solution s In a s tudy on the effects of a reference group, Park and Lessig (1977) suggest that a reference group has three types of influence: informational utilitarian and value expressive First, informational reference group influence occurs when individuals think the opinions or behaviors of the reference group enhance their knowledge and ability to make correct judgments or decisions. Second, the utilitarian reference group influence becomes prominent when there are explicit rewards or punishments for one s behavior choic e Third, the value expressive reference group influence is strong when people try to enhance or maintain their own positive self concepts by adopting opinions, behaviors or images of the reference group. In sum, conformity theories indicate that in dividuals tend to follow others opinions and choices for several reasons. However, the research on conformity has suggested that there are a number of boundary conditions and moderating variables for individual conformity behaviors. Specifically, in an in tegrative study of consumer conformity, Lascu and Zinkhan (1999) identified and grouped the moderating factors of social influence in marketing and consumer contexts into four categories: 1) task/situation characteristics (e.g. ambiguity) ; 2) product char acteristics (e.g.

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35 conspicuousness) ; 3) group characteristics (e.g. similarity of group to individual) ; and 4) personal characteristics (e.g. tendency to conform). Accordingly, the next section discuss ed the opposite motivation of conformity together wi th the differences of individual and product characteristics i nvolved in social influence. Distinctiveness Theory Although Asch s classical study (1951) be came a seminal work for conformity studies, subjects who showed conformity behaviors were only one third of the se participants. Otherwise, two thirds of the subjects were not affected by other s opinions. Instead of studying conformity, several researchers focused on the people who resisted conforming and their motivations for refusing to follow others For example, a study (Duval 1 972) of interpersonal similarity showed that, when people felt highly similar to many others and their personal feeling s of uniqueness diminished, they conformed less to others opinion s Snyder and Fromkin (1977) argued that people desired a sense of uniqueness relative to others, so, when their uniqueness was deprived or hindered they chose to be unique and conform less to other s opinions. The explain ed this uniqueness motiv ation as a coping mechanism for each individual s identity threat, which occurs when peoples perceive they have a high similar it y to others. The effects of uniqueness were also found in advertising studies that investigated the positive effects of scarcity and uniqueness appeals on consumer brand attitud e (Inman, Peter, and Raghubir 1 997; Verhallen and Robben 1 994). Applying the uniqueness theory to the domain of consumer research, Tian and her colleagues (2001) argue that people achieve differentiation goals by purchasing and using those consumer goods t hat consumed by the majority of other consumers.

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36 Reconciling the contradiction between conformity and uniqueness perspectives, Brewer (1991) argues that individuals possess both the need for assimilation and the need to have differentiation from others. S he suggests that individuals strive to reach an optimal distinctiveness by avoiding either too personalized or too inclusive self construal. The results of her experiment showed that when individuals lost the uniqueness of their identity they tended to de value their memberships in majority groups that they believe have caused the loss of that uniqueness. This reconciling view of an opposite social influence has stimulated subsequent research that aims to identify when people conform to others, and when the y diverge from others with seeking uniqueness Individual Difference s as Moderator s of Social Influence Since Asch s study (1951) revealed that individuals differ in terms of their tendenc y to conform, many academic investigations have been conducted to i dentify the psychological traits that moderate individuals susceptibility to social influence. For example, academic findings showed a higher susceptibility to social influence in people who are more submissive (Helson et al. 1 956), low in self confidence (Kelley and Lamb 1 957), less intelligent (Nakamura 1 958), low in self esteem (Allen 1 965), low in assertiveness (Williams 1 984), high in public self consciousness (Davis 1 984), and high in self monitoring (Nantel and Strahle 1 986) or pay more attention t o social comparison information (Lennox and Wolfe 1 984). In addition a recent study (Berger and Heath 2 007) showed that people with a higher need for uniqueness were more likely to change their brand preference when they learned that the majority of other consumers had cho sen the same brand with them than other people with a lower need for uniqueness. In the field of consumer research several measurements of individual difference in social influence have been developed. Bearden and his colleagues (1989) d eveloped

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37 the individual difference scale to measure su sceptibility to normative and informational interpersonal influence In validating th is scale, they found that susceptibility to normative influence positively correlated with measures of attention paid to social comparison information (Lennox and Wolfe 1 984), and when both normative and informational influences negatively correlated with measures of self esteem (Eagly 1 967). Higher susceptibility of consumers with lower self esteem was explained as bein g motivated by a tendency to maintain (or enhance) positive self concept based on feelings of social acceptance and group belongingness (McGuire 1 968; Stafford and Cocanougher 1977). Modifying the original need for uniqueness scales that were proposed by Snyder and Fromkin (1977), Tian and her colleagues (2001) developed measurements for consumer need for uniqueness, defined as the trait of pursuing differentness relative to others through the acquisition, utilization, and disposition of consumer goods f or the purpose of developing and enhancing one s self image and social image (p. 52). In addition they identified three behavioral dimensions of consumers need for uniqueness: C reative choice counter conformity, unpopular choice counter conformity, and avoidance of similarity This scale was found to positively correlate with a desire for unique products, and it negatively correlated with perceived social similarity as a consumer. A more recent study (Ruvio, Shoham and Bren i 2008) developed and validated a short er form of the consumer need for uniqueness scale reducing the scale to 12 items from the original scale using 31 items. Product Characteristic s as Moderator s of Social Influence Besides the individual characteris tics, the other stream of social influence research has studied product characteristics as a determinant of conformity behavior

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38 and uniqueness seeking. A study conducted by Bearden and Etzel (1982) was one of the early studies that compared vari ous types o f social influence for different product categories. They classified 16 products into 4 categories: publicly consumed necessities (e.g. automobile s ) ; publicly consumed luxuries (e.g. skis) ; privately consumed necessities (e.g. mattress es ) ; and privately consumed luxuries (e.g. video game s ). Then they compared Park and Lessig s three types of social influence informational, value expressive and utilitarian in each category by asking respondents to score the relevancy of these three social influence types within each product category. In their results, the relevancy score of informational influence scored the highest in all four categories, and the score was higher for luxury categories than for necessities. This result indicates that consumers take t he informativeness of others opinions and choices more seriously when they purchase expensive and infrequently purchased goods. The relevancy of value expressive and utilitarian influence, a compliance tendency in this context, was higher for publicly con sumed products than for those consumed privately. This result shows that consumers consider the social aspects for their brand choices when the use of a product is highly visible to others. In sum, Bearden and Etzel (1982) show that different types of soc ial influence can co exist, and the relative strength of each influence can var y by product type. However, their study only focused on the assimilation effects of social influence without considering the distinctiveness effects of social influence, which m ay be prominent in publicly consumed products in particular As stated in a prior section, the characteristics of attitude objects can determine the function applied to form ing the attitude toward the se objects (Shavitt 1990). Recent studies by Berger and Heath (2007; 2008) applied this theory of attitude function to the

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39 social influence context and investigated the differential effects of assimilation and differentiation as motives depending on product type. Their results show that when considering functi onal products consumers tend to prefer brands that the majorit y of other consumers have also chose n On the other hand, consumer preferences will switch toward brands not chosen by the majorit y if th ose products are seen as sy m bolic of identity. These res ults are consistent with the present argument about the duality of popularity cues, and also with the prediction of attitude function theory by demonstrating that consumers do use different functions of attitude based on a product characteristics. Specif ically, consumers use utilitarian function of attitude when they choose identity irrelevant products ; thus brand popularity can serve as a quality cue that eventually le a d s to positive responses. However, when consumers evaluate identity relevant products, they use the value express function of attitude w hen interpreting brand popularity as a loss of uniqueness, which in turn then le a d s to divergent choice behaviors. As reviewed, the moderating roles of consumer and product characteristics in studies of so cial influence including conformity behavior and uniqueness seeking have been well documented with empirical supports in multiple studies. However, there are little knowledge about the combined effects of consumer and product characteristics, because most of previous studies had focused separately either on the individual difference or the product type. In fact, few studies investigated the combined effects of consumer and product characteristics on popularity effects including conformity behavior and uniqu eness seeking. In a previous study (Berger and Heath 2007 ), the

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40 interaction effect between individuals need for uniqueness and product types (less vs. more identity relevant products) on brand choices was not significant. Summary and Hypotheses The liter ature review suggests that brand popularity can serve as an extrinsic cue and affect consumers perceptions and attitudes toward brands. Thus, it is expected that consumers responses toward a brand advertised with information about brand popularity, which is called as popularity appeal in the present study, will differ from the ir responses toward a brand advertised without popularity information. However, the effects of popularity appeals are not unidirectional. Instead the strength and direction of the p opularity effects will be differed depending on consumer traits and product characteristics. Specifically, literatures on uniqueness motive suggest the existence of individual differences in pursuing uniqueness ( Snyder and Fromkin 1977; Tian, Bearden, and Hunter 2001 ). Thus, it is expected that consumers with lower need for uniqueness will generate more positive perceptions and attitudes toward the brand advertised with a popularity message compared to other consumers with higher need for uniqueness. Conc erning product characteristics, when advertised products serve utilitarian function in attitude formation, consumers will form more positive perceptions and attitude s toward brand when the brand is advertised with rather than without a popularity message. Otherwise, when advertised products serve value expressive function, the popularity message will affect brand perceptions and attitude s negatively. In a study of quality perceptions (Hellof and Jacobson 1999), the brand popularity affect negatively to prod uct categories where consumers concerns for exclusivity are high. These opposite directions of the popularity effects will be consistent across different levels of the need

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41 for uniqueness (O Keefe 2002) In fact, a previous study (Berger and Heath 2007) s howed that regardless of the level of the need for uniqueness, people tended to switch their brand preference for identity relevant products when they are informed that majority of people preferred the same brand. However, in the case of less identity rele vant products, both consumers with high and low need for uniqueness tended to keep their preferred brands, even though they were informed that the majority prefers the same brand. Additionally, a study (Shavitt et al. 1992) using similar personality variab le, self monitoring, showed that individual differences in self monitoring did not significantly relate to their attitudes toward advertising when the attitude toward advertised products serves a single function, either utilitarian or value expressive. Th e abovementioned findings about the effects of product characteristics are based on the dichotomization of attitude toward products into either utilitarian or value expressive dimension. Even though this dichotomization has been frequently applied in previ ous advertising studies (e.g., Bearden and Etzel 1982; Johar and Sirgy 1991; Rossiter and Percy 1987), it is noteworthy that many products serve both utilitarian and value expressive functions simultaneously ( O Keefe 2002; Shavitt 1990). For example, consu safety) and value expressive function (e.g., style). In this case, the popularity effects can be either positive or negative depending on which function between utilitarian and value expressive consumers are more oriented to. If consumers focused more on utilitarian motives in forming their attitudes toward the product with multiple functions, they would more likely to interpret the information about brand popularity as sign al of quality, leading to positive popularity effects. On the other hand, if consumers formed

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42 their attitudes toward the brand primarily based on value expressive function, loss of uniqueness will become more salient meaning of popularity, which would affe ct brand attitude negatively. Therefore, if a brand selected from product categories with multiple will be moderated by their individual traits. A similar interaction b etween product types and individual traits was found in the previous study (Shavitt et al. 1992) reviewed in a prior section. This study showed that when evaluating advertising for a product (e.g., car) with multiple attitude functions, subjects with high self monitoring preferred advertising with value expressive appeal while others with low self monitoring preferred advertising with utilitarian appeal. Similar to self monitoring, it is presumable that differences in consumer s (CNFU) ( Tian et al. 2001; Ruvio et al. 2008) affect their dispositional uses of one of the attitude functions, either utilitarian or value expressive, when they form attitudes toward products with multiple functions. Specifically, people with high need for uniquen ess will weigh the value expressive function among multiple attitude function, so brand popularity will be considered as loss of uniqueness rather than quality cue. However, if peoples have lower need for uniqueness, they will focus more on the utilitarian rather than value expressive function, so brand popularity will affect positively. In sum, according to the reviewed theories and literatures, we can expect a three way interaction among exposures to popularity appeal, product characteristics, and consume purchase intentions. Hypothesis 1: For a utilitarian product, regardless of the CNFU, subjects exposed to a popularity appeal in advertising will show more positive (a) perceptions of

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43 brand quality, (b) attitudes toward the brand and (c) purchase intentions as compared to subjects not exposed to the popularity appeal. Hypothesis 2: For a value expressive product, regardless of the CNFU, subjects exposed to a popularity appeal in adv ertising will show more negative (a) perceptions of brand quality, (b) attitudes toward the brand and (c) purchase intentions as compared to subjects not exposed to the popularity appeal. Hypothesis 3a: For multiple function products, subjects with higher CNFU will show more negative (a) perceptions of brand quality, (b) attitudes toward the brand and (c) purchase intentions when the brand is advertised with a popularity appeal than when it is advertised with out one Hypothesis 3b: For multiple function pro ducts, subjects with lower CNFU will show more positive (a) perceptions of brand quality, (b) attitudes toward the brand and (c) purchase intentions when the brand is advertised with a popularity appeal than when it is advertised without one In addition to affecting consumers perceptions and attitude s popularity appeals can affect other dimensions of consumers responses toward brands including recall and recognition. As reviewed in the pr evious section, the social influence literatures have revealed t hat social information (e.g., others opinions and choices ) is a significant factor in consumers information processing. Therefore, it can be presumed that consumers pay more attention to advertisements with popularity appeal s than those without them The refore, the following hypothesis was proposed: Hypothesis 4: S ubjects exposed to popularity appeals will exhibit more attentive and elaborated processing of advertising compared to subjects not exposed to popularity appeals as evidenced by superior recall and more accurate recognition of advertised brands and advertisements.

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44 CHAPTER 3 METHOD Overview The primary purpose of the present study is to investigate consumers responses to the popularity appeals in advertising. An experiment was conducted to te st the hypothesized effects of the popularity appeals, which are expected to show differential patterns depending on types of products and consumers need for uniqueness (CNFU) Specifically, a true experiment w as conducted by manipulating conditions of me ssage exposure and product types and by randomly assigning research participants to conditions. Prior to the m ain experiment, p reliminar y p rocedures with several pretests w ere conducted to select products that serve different attitude functions, to develo p the advertising stimuli to be tested, and to collect the CNFU scores. For the main experiment, subjects were exposed to print ads portraying fictitious brands serving either utilitarian, value expressive, or multiple functions. Subjects w ere randomly ass igned to one of the advertising stimuli with or without the popularity claim. Dependent measures included perceived quality of the advertised brand, attitude toward the brand, purchase intention recall, and recognition related to the brands and advertisi ng. Internal Validity The experiment was conducted with taking into account threats to internal validity by following suggestions provided by Campbell and Stanley (1969) and Shadish and colleagues (2002). Above all, the stimuli manipulation and random ass ignment in the present study helped to rule out several threats to internal validity related to ambiguous

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45 temporal precedence, selection, and regression artifacts. To prevent the occurrence of unexpected events and maturations between stimuli exposures and dependent measures, the dependent variables w ere measured right after the stimuli presentations. Even though attrition was not a notable threat due to the simple and relatively short experimental procedure, the rates of attrition in each condition w ere ch ecked to ensure valid inference of the experiment results. By using computers for stimuli exposures and data collecti on the nature of a measure w as not change over time. There was a possibility that a testing effect exist ed between exposures to stimuli advertisements with popularity appeal and the reporting of CNFU after the exposure and answering dependent variables. To avoid this testing effect, CNFU w as collected separately through a preliminary procedure that w as conducted one month before the main e xperiment with the subjects who were recruited for the main experiment Additionally, to avoid other sources of testing effects besides CNFU, subjects who participate d in the pre tests for product selections and stimuli developments were excluded from the recruit ment for the main experiment. External Validity In terms of the external validity, the present study with using an experiment has several limitations just as other experimental studies. Generalizations of the results from the present study across d ifferent units, treatment, outcomes, settings and contexts are significantly limited. In most experimental studies internal validity has the higher priority than external validity because securing internal validity is essentially required to make correct inference about the causality, which is the main interest of experimental studies (Campbell and Stanley 1 969; Shadish et al. 2 002). Thus, using homogeneous respondents, isolated laboratory and limited numbers of variables has merits in testing

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46 causality between manipulated conditions and measured variable ( Calder, Phillips, and Tybout 1981 ). On the other hand, g eneralizability of the results from a single experiment is inevitably limited. The pr esent study, howe ver, measure d several items to enhance exter nal validity across different units, treatments and outcomes. Specifically, participants gender, age and academic major w ere collected and their effects on hypothesized outcomes w ere compared In addition, multiple dependent variables including perceived quality, brand attitude, purchase intention, recall and recognition w ere measure d in order to examine the effects of popularity appeals across different outcome measure s Finally, based on the findings of the proposed study, future research w as suggested with the purpose to increase the generalizability of the experiment results. Preliminary Procedures Product Selection The present study used fictitious brands of existing products as experimental stimuli By using fictitious brands, we can avoid confoundin g effects of previous consumer knowledge and attitudes toward the brand. To select test products in the main experiment, 17 product categories were examined through a pre test. To ensure the relevance of the tes t products to the experimental subjects, the pretest only include d products that are frequently used by both female and male undergraduate student s. To minimize the effects caused by different price levels among the test products, expensive (e.g., car, jew elry) and inexpensive (e.g., chewing gum, pencil) products were excluded The products in the test were blender, microwave, toaster, hairdryer, cookware swimwear, dress suit, dress

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47 shoes, sunglass perfume, laptop case, suitcase, headphone, bicycle, hat, messenger bag and satchel. The purpose of this pre test wa s to identify a set of products about which undergraduate students have : (1) low levels of prior knowledge, (2) different attitude functions, and (3) similar levels of product involvement. Specifica lly, products about which participants ha d low levels of prior knowledge w ere selected because selecting products from unfamiliar categories w ould be more valid ecologically in testing the effects of popularity appeal. If the products are selected from wel l known categories (e.g., cellular phone, jeans and beer) where most participants know which brands are popular in the actual marketplace, there is a possibilit y that subjects may doubt the popularity appeal of fictitious brands. In terms of attitude func tion, products w ere classified as utilitarian value expressive or multiple function products for the purpose of manipulation for product types in the main experiment. Products with similar levels of product involvement were chosen in order to avoid potential confounding effects caused by different levels of product involvement. To choose products that meet above selection criteria, an online survey was conducted with about 71 participants from the sample pool of the main experiment. The participants accessed to the survey webpage individually and each participant answered questions about randomly selected seven products out of 17 products with randomly rotated orders. Questions included their (1) levels of prior knowledge about each product (2) a ttitude function related to the products, and (3) levels of product involvements.

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48 First, following the conceptualization of prior product knowledge as the composite of product familiarity and product expertise (Alba and Hutchinson 1 987), prior product kno wledge w as measured by averaging across item s measuring product familiarity (Rao and Monroe 1 988) and product expertise (Moore and Lehmann 1 980) with seven point scales In addition, participants were asked to recall brands in the given product categories. Second, using two seven point items (LeBoeuf and Simmons 2010) that asked utilitarian and value expressive attitude functions related to products, attitude functions of individual products in the list w ere identified. Specifically, products scor ing high o n utilitarian function but low on value expressive function w ere classified as the utilitarian products. Other products with high value expressive and low utilitarian scores w ere classified as the value expressive products. When products ha d both high in u tilitarian and value expressive function, they will be classified as multiple function products. Lastly, product involvements w ere measured by five seven point items of personal product involvement suggested by Mittal (1995). The scales and items used in t his pretest are presented at Appendix A. Test results showed that the blender was a product that had low level of product knowledge ( M = 2.94, SD = 1.45) and significantly higher score in utilitarian function of attitude ( M = 5.64, SD = 1.64) than value e xpressive function ( M = 2.58, SD = 1.52) ( t = 7.42, p < .001). The hat was low in prior product knowledge ( M = 3.61, SD = 1.83) and significantly higher in value expressive function ( M = 5.66, SD = 1.83) than utilitarian function of attitude ( M = 3 .37, SD = 2.11) ( t = 2.57, p < 001 ). In case of the messenger bag, which was low in prior product knowledge ( M = 3.02, SD = 1.48), both utilitarian ( M = 4.58, SD = 2.14) and value expressive functions ( M = 4.52, SD = 2.09) were higher

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49 than the mid point of the sc ale and those scores were not significantly different ( t = .13, p > .05). The levels of product involvement in these three products were not significantly different from each other ( M (Blender) = 3.96 ; M (Hat) = 3.92 ; M (Messenger Bag) = 3.26) ( p > .05) In a ddition, there was no significant gender difference in involvements for all three products ( t (Blender) = .44, p > .05; t (Hat) = 1.68, p > .05; t (Messenger Bag) = .42, p > .05). Based on these results, the blender was selected as the utilitarian product an d the hat was chosen as the value expressive product. In addition, the messenger bag was used as the multiple function product. Stimuli Development The second pretest w as conducted to develop t hree versions of simulated print advertisements for a blender, a hat and a messenger bag identified from th e first pretest as representing utilitarian, value expressive and multiple function products respectively. In the second pretest, 39 undergraduate student s who did not participate in the first pretest w ere recru ited T hey completed the survey consisted with t wo parts that aim ed to develop a fictitious brand name and to select graphical images in the advertisements. First, in terms of the fictitious brand name, a single brand name w as selected for all three produc ts in order to avoid the undesired effects from brand naming Five brand name alternatives Bamforth, Farleigh, Hoyland, Irving, Leighton w ere randomly chosen from the list of a prior study (Doyle and Bottomley 2004) in which the authors used the phone bo ok and purposively draw t wenty family names with different initial letters that were neither common or odd The participants answered a seven point question that asked how each brand name was well matched with each product type Also, participants answered a seven point question about the overall attractiveness of the brand name for each individual product. In t he results Leighton was the one scored

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50 above mid points of match scores for all three products ( M Blender = 4.05; M Hat = 4.07; M Messenger Bag = 4.60 ) and had similar evaluations in attractiveness across three different product types ( M Blender = 4.36; M Hat = 4.55; M Messenger Bag = 4.52) ( p > .05). Secondly five versions of graphical images w ere presented for each product. S urvey participants took turn s to evaluate individual images by answering multiple seven point scales measuring their attitude toward the product and their purchase intentions (Spears and Singh 2 004). In addition, participants answered a question asking the maximum amount that they we re willing to pay for the product presented in each graphical stimulus. Across three products, the images with similar levels of attitude ( M Blender = 4.77; M Hat = 4.33; M Messenger Bag = 4.56) ( p > .05) and intention scores ( M Blender = 4.62; M Hat = 4.21; M M essenger Bag = 4.10) ( p > .05) were selected as key visuals in advertising stimuli. For the selected stimuli, t he maximum amount that they were willing to pay were $41.3 for the blender, $24.1 for the hat, and $34.28 for the messenger bag. In addition to t he second pretest, five students majored in advertising were interviewed to develop an advertising copy and a brand slogan used in the advertising stimuli. The advertising copies chosen for the popularity appeal were Perfecting your kitchen with the best selling blender, Perfecting your look with best selling hat, and Perfecting your look with best selling messenger bag. Together with these advertising copies, No.1 Blender Brand, No.1 Hat Brand, and No.1 Messenger Bag were added under the brand name as forms of brand slogan in the set of stimuli for popularity appeals. In cases of control conditions without the popularity appeal, the phrase of the best selling were extracted from the advertising copy, and No.1 brand slogans were not presented

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51 Finally, selected fictitious brand name, graphical images and advertising copies with brand slogans were used to develop different versions of the print advertisement s for each of the three products. Appendix B shows the experimental stimuli used in th e main experiment M easure of Consumers Need for Uniqueness (CNFU) T he present study collect ed CNFU scores separately prior to the main experiment in order to control the undesired effects of stimuli exposures and other dependent measures on CNFU scores. Similar procedures have been applied in other studies that measure d subjects psychological traits including need for cognition (e.g. Cacioppo, Petty and Morris 1983) and self monitoring (e.g., Snyder and DeBono 1985). Three to four weeks prior to the main experiment, 320 undergraduate students in several large classes at a large southeastern university in the U.S. completed the questionnaire to measure CNFU in exchange for extra credit. T he se participants then were re invited to participate in the main experiment. The participants individual ly access ed the survey webpage and answer 31 items in the CNFU scale (Tian, Bearden and Hunter 2001). The survey will be introduced as a study on students individual characteristics, and no information will be pr ovided that may induce participants to guess the relations between this preliminary procedure and the following main experiment. Parts of participants names and student identification numbers will be requested for the purpose of matching individual subjec ts CNFU scores from this preliminary procedure with their second CNFU scores in the main experiment.

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52 Main Experiment Participants and Research Design The initial sample of the main e xperiment consisted of 313 undergraduate students recruited from the sam e classes used for the preliminary to collect CNFU The students participated to the experiment voluntarily with exchanging extra course credit. A 2 (popularity appeal: presence / absence) x 3 (product type: utilitarian / value expressive / multiple funct ion) x 2 (consumers need for uniqueness: high / low) between subject factorial design w as used to test the hypotheses. The popularity appeal and product type w ere manipulated, and subjects w ere divided into either high or low CNFU based on the median spli t of their CNFU scores measured in the preliminary procedure. In the main experiment, participants w ere randomly exposed to one of six different versions of advertising stimuli of two popularity appeal conditions by three product types. Procedure Multiple sessions with 4 to 19 participants were run in a research lab where data were collected through Qualtrics, an online survey program Each participant was seated individually at a desk equipped with a computer, and w as given a description of the research an d informed consent forms. At the beginning of the experimental session, participants w ere told that a company wa s trying to expand their business into the State of Florida and in order to test the feasibility of their market expansion the company was col lecting students responses about their brands. After reading and signing informed consent forms participants w ere exposed to three different advertisements on their computer screens. One w as the target stimuli from six different experimental conditions, and the other two w ere filler stimuli. To avoid

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53 order bias, the order in which the three advertisements were presented w as randomized. Su bjects w ere instructed to view the individual advertisements at their normal pace, and to answer the questions present ed on the computer screen More s pecifically, subjects w ere exposed to the first advertisement on the computer screen, and after they finish ed reading the advertisement, they were asked to go to the next page which feature d a series of dependent measures except questions for recall and recognition tests. A f ter they complete d the dependent measures for the first advertisement, the same procedure s were repeated for the second and thi rd advertisements. After assessing three advertisements, subjects involveme nt s for all three products exposed through advertisement stimuli were measured (Mittal 1995) Next, the subjects w ere exposed to a series of questions that check recall and recognition about the advertised brands and advertisements. Subsequently manipulat ion check questions were presented. These include d perceptions of brand popularity ( Mishra et al. 1 993) and attitude function measures (LeBoeuf and Simmons 2 010). On the next page, participants w ere asked to guess the true purpose of the research in orde r to check the demand characteristics ; i.e., the questions assess ed whether the participants recognize d the true purpose of investigating popularity claims. Finally, questions regarding demographic characteristics, including age, gender, ethnicity and aca demic major w ere asked together with parts of their names and school identification numbers in order to match their CNFU scores from preliminary procedure and to be able to compensate students for their participation by giving them extra credit. After all participants in the same session ha d complete d the questionnaire, the debriefing statement w as presented, and the participants w ere thanked and dismissed.

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54 Dependent Measures First, attitudes toward the brand w ere measured using an average of five 7 poin t scales (1 = u nappealing 7 = appealing; 1 = bad, 7 = good; 1 = unpleasant, 7 = pleasant; 1 = unfavorable, 7 = favorable; 1 = unlikable, 7 = likable) that ask ed subjects overall feelings about the brand described in the ad (Spears and Singh 2004). Secon d, purchase intention w ere measured with three 7 point scales (1 = unlikely, 7 = likely; 1 = improbable, 7 = probable; 1 = impossible, 7 = possible) that ask ed the probabilities of purchasing the advertised brands (MacKenzie, Lutz and Belch 1986). Next, t he perceived quality of the advertised brand w as assessed with a two item scale that ask ed : ompared to other brands, what is the likely quality of the advertised brand? (1 = much lower than average quality, 7 = much higher than average quality ) and lease rate the advertised brand on the following dimensions (1 = low quality, 7 = high quality) (Boulding and Kirmani 1993). Lastly, unaided recall and recognition w ere checked with several questions related to advertised brands and advertisements S pecifically, subjects w ere first asked to list all brand names that they c ould recall from previous exposure to three advertisements. Next, subjects w ere asked to undertake three recognition tasks by choosing the correct features ( e.g., brand name, ad copy and ad layout) of the advertisements of the target brands. For the purposes of data analysis, subjects answers for recall and recognition questions w ere coded as individuals recall and recognition scores by following a previous stud y with similar measu res (Zanjani, Diamond and Chan 2011). Specifically, unaided recalls of the name of target brand (e.g., Leighton ) exposed in the stimuli advertisement w as scored as five points for perfectly correct recalls, four points for substantially correct recalls wi th less than three spelling errors (e.g., Leighson ), three

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55 points for incorrect recalls containing recognizable elements of the brand name (e.g., Leicht ), two points for incorrect recalls with only the initial letter correct (e.g., Liaison ), and one point for a completely incorrect recall (e.g., Triana ) or for no response. In terms of recognition scores, the number of correct answers for the three recognition questions w as coded ranging from a recognition score of 0 if no answers are correct to 3 if all ans wers are correct.

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56 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS In this chapter, the data set of the main experiment was analyzed to test proposed hypotheses, and its results a re presented In testing hypotheses s eries of multivariate and univariate analyses was conducted with usi ng IBM SPSS Statistics 19 and a ll statistical testing were conducted at the 95% confidence level or ( p < .05 ). Prior to testing hypotheses, this chapter presents description of sample, scale reliability analysis and manipulation checks. Description of Sam ple The initial sample of the main e xperiment consisted of 313 undergraduate students recruited from the same classes used for the preliminary to collect CNFU The students participated to the experiment voluntarily with exchanging extra course credit. The average time to complete the main experiment was 12 minutes 29 seconds with excluding procedures of research introduction, informed consent and debriefing. Among the initial sample, 2 57 were the same participants who completed CNFU measures prior to the m ain experiment. Among those participants, two responses that completed the experimental procedure within five minutes with extreme and consistent high or low rating patterns were eliminated. In results, the final sample size used in the data analysis for h ypothesis tests consisted of 2 55 subjects. The participants ranged in age from 18 to 2 8 ( M = 20. 2 ). Seventy two percent of the samples were female and 28% were male Seventy six percent o f the samples were Caucasian, 15.3% were Hispanic, 5.1 % were Bl ack o r African American, and 3.5 % were Asian or Pacific Islander. The respondents demographic information is presented in Table 4 1 Series of one way analysis of variance (ANOVA) were conducted to identify

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57 any potential significant differences related to gend er on dependent and independent variables. As described in Table 4 2, ANOVAs showed no significant gender differences in all dependent and independent measures including quality perception (F(1, 254 ) = 01 p > .05), attitude toward the brand (F(1, 2 54 ) = 2.19, p > .05), purchase intention (F(1, 254 ) = 1.93 p > .05), and CNFU (F(1, 254 ) = 76 p > .05) As described in the prior chapter, participants were randomly assigned to one of six experimental conditions of popularity appeal (presence / absence) by attitude functions (utilitarian / value expressive / multiple function). On the basis of a median split of CNFU scale ( Tian et al. 2001) scores computed by averaging 31 items with five point scale (M edian = 2.71 ), participants were divided into either a hi gh CNFU group or a low CNFU group. The mean CNFU scores of the high CNFU group ( M = 3.27, SD = .42) was significantly higher than a low CNFU group ( M = 2.16, SD = .37) (F(1, 254) = 494.05, p < .001) Table 4 3 shows t he distribution of participants across 12 experimental conditions. The average number of participants in 12 experimental cells was 21.3 subjects, and the numbers in each cell were ranged from 1 9 to 24. The unequal cell sizes were occurred because of CNFU median split and different rates of resp ondents in each cell who had CNFU scores collect ed prior to the main experiment. Scale Reliability and Manipulation Checks Reliability of Measures The internal consistencies of the dependent measures were tested through reliability analyses. Cronbach s ( 1951) alpha values w ere sufficiently high for all dependent measures including .97), purchase intentions (3 items, .95) and quality perception (2 items, .96) A dditional reliability estimates were computed fo r pre measured CNFU (31 items, .94) and

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58 product involvements (5 items, Blender = .92; Blender = .93; Blender = .95) Based on these results of high alpha values, three dependent variables, CNFU scores and product involvements were computed by averag ing all items in each measurement. Manipulation Checks Prior to test hypotheses, manipulation checks were conducted with two independent variables, exposure of popularity appeal and attitude functions related to different product types. First, a two wa y ANOVA was conducted to test the manipulation of popularity appeal with exposure to popularity appeal and product types as independent factors and perceived popularity of the advertised product measured with four seven point items as the dependent variabl e. The main effect of popularity appeal on perceived popularity was significant (F (2, 254 = 24.91 p < .001), however the other main effect of product type and the interaction were not significant. Specifically, perceived popularity of all three products w as significantly higher when the popularity appeal was presented ( M Blender = 4. 61 ; M Hat = 4.81 ; M Messenger Bag = 4. 58 ) than when it was absent ( M Blender = 3.47 ; M Hat = 3. 68; M Messenger Bag = 4.01 ). These results indicate the successful manipulation of popu larity appeal into presence and absence conditions. Second, s eries of paired sample s T tests were conducted for the manipulation check of attitude functions associated to different product types. For a blender, which was chosen as a utilitarian product, t he score for utilitarian function of attitude ( M = 6. 23 SD = .97 ) was significantly higher than value expressive function of attitude ( M = 3. 09 SD = 1.67 ) ( t = 24.83 p < .001 ). For a hat selected as a value expressive product, the score for value expres sive function of attitude ( M = 6.43 SD = .75 ) was significantly higher than utilitarian function of attitude ( M = 3. 27 SD = 1. 65 ) ( t = 26.98 p < .001 ).

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59 These results showed that m anipulations of utilitarian and value expressive products were successful I n terms of a messenger bag, which was chosen as a multiple function product based on the results of a pretest, it was expected to be high both in the scores of utilitarian and value expressive functions, and there was no significant difference between u tilitarian and value expressive functions. However, in the manipulation checks of the data from the main experiment, the score of value expressive function ( M = 6. 12 SD = 1.01 ) was significantly higher than the score of utilitarian function ( M = 4. 87, SD = 1. 66 ) ( t = 9.80 p < .001) This result contradictory with the pretest showed that the manipulation might not be successful and subjects considered the messenger bag as a value expressive products rather than a utilitarian product. However, both attitud e functions related to the messenger bag were above mid point of the measurement and an a dditional analys is showed that utilitarian function of the messenger bag ( M = 4. 87 SD = 1. 66 ) was significantly higher than utilitarian function of the hat ( M = 3. 27 SD = 1. 65 ) ( t = 1 2. 96 p < .001) Therefore, the messenger bag can be classified as the multiple function products when it is compared with the hat as the value expressive product. Hypotheses Testing T able 4 4 presents each group s mean scores of depend ent measures. T his study proposed hypotheses about interaction effects of three independent variables including popularity appeal, product types and consumers need for uniqueness on three dependent variables including perceived quality, attitude toward th e brand and purchase intentions. Series of multivariate and univariate tests were used to test the hypothesized effects.

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60 Test of Three way Interaction In testing proposed three way interaction effect of popularity appeal, attitude function and CNFU on qu ality perception, attitude toward the brand and purchase intention, multivariate analyse s were conducted first to minimize type one error Also, because dependent variables (quality perception of the advertised brand, attitude toward the brand and purchase intention) were conceptually related as the desired outcome of advertising execution, multivariate approaches were well suited. First, analysis of covariance (MANCOVA) was run with including product involvement as covariates in the model. Product involve ment was included as a covariate because literatures (e.g. Petty et al. 1983) ha d consistently suggested that individual product involvements could affect attention to peripheral cues in persuasive messages and their patterns of information processing. T he results showed significant effects of product involvement (F (3, 240) = 1 9. 88 p < .001) on multivariate dependent measures. Thus, following analyses were conducted with controlling product involvement as the covariate As shown in Table 4 5 MANCOVA re sults showed a significant three way interaction between three independent factors and three dependent measures Trace = .0 7 F (6, 482) = 2. 75 p < .0 5 ; Wil k 3 F (6, 480) = 2. 77 p < .0 5 ; 0 7 F (6, 478) = 2. 80 p < .0 5 7 F (3, 241) = 4.62 p < .01). This finding suggests that there is an interaction effect among popularity appeal, product type and CNFU on advertising effectiveness combined with quality perception of advertised brands, attitud e toward the brand and purchase intention. MANCOVA was followed by uni variate analyses for each of the dependent variables. As presented in Table 4 6 the three way interaction was marginally significant in purcha se

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61 intention (F (2, 242) = 3.00 p = .0 52 ), but not significant in other dependent measures, perceived quality (F (2, 242) = 54 p > .05) and attitude toward the brand (F (2, 242) = 1. 68 p > .05) In addition MANCOVA revealed a s ignificant interaction of popularity appeal and CNFU interaction (F(3 240) = 3. 75 p < .05) and a significant main effect of popularity appeal (F(3, 240) = 6.94 p < .001). All other effects were not significant. In the following section, the popularity appeal and CNFU interaction and the main effect of popularity appeal were examined further within each type of product in order to test each individual hypothesis. Test of Hypothesis 1 : Utilitarian Product Hypothesis 1 states that, for utilitarian product s subjects exposed to a popularity appeal in advertising regardless of their CNFU will show more positive quality perceptions attitudes toward the brand and purchase intentions than subjects not exposed to the popularity appeal. To test this hypothesis, data from 84 participants who evaluated blender advertisements were a nalyzed by MANCOVA with quality perception, attitude toward the brand and purchase intention as the dependents, popularity appeal and CNFU as the independent variables, and product involvement as a covariate. Based on Hypothesis 1, significant main effect of popularity appeal was expected, and other effects including main effect of CNFU and popularity appeal and CNFU interaction should not be significant. Table 4 7 presents MANCOVA results for the case of utilitarian product. As expected, main effect of pop ularity appeal was significant (F(3, 77) = 3.37, p < .05), and main effect of CNFU (F(3, 77) = 1.72, p > .05) and popularity appeal by CNFU interaction (F(3, 77) = 1.37, p > .05) were not significant.

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62 To better understand the main effect of popularity app eal, results from separate univariate analyses were examined for each of the dependent variables. As shown in Table 4 8 popularity appeal had significant effects on quality perception (F(1, 79) = 9.59, p < .01) and attitude toward the brand (F(1, 79) = 4. 58, p < .05) The effects of CNFU and popularity appeal by CNFU interaction were not significant. These results indicate that quality perceptions and brand attitudes of subjects exposed to popularity appeal (M Quality Perception = 4.76 M Attitude toward the Brand = 4.74 ) were more positive than other subjects not to exposed to popularity appeal (M Quality Perception = 3.61 M Attitude toward the Brand = 4.07 ), and individual difference in CNFU did not affect significantly in this pattern. For purchase intentio n, there was a significant interaction between popularity appeal and CNFU (F(1, 79) = 11.39, p < .05). As shown in Figure 4 1 the pattern of interaction was disordinal, which made interpretation of the main effect inappropriate. Specifically, the effect o f popularity appeal on purchase intention affected only to low CNFU group but not to high CNFU group. In cases of low CNFU, subjects exposed to popularity appeal ( M = 4.08, SD = 2.23) showed significantly higher purchase intention than other subjects not e xposed to popularity appeal ( M = 2.84, SD = 1.28) (F(1, 40) = 4.79, p < .05). On the other hand, purchase intention of high CNFU subjects exposed to popularity appeal (M = 3.77, SD = 1.56) did not differ significantly with others without the exposure to po pularity appeal (M = 3.77, SD = 1.48) ( p > .05). Figure 4 1 shows the plots of group means of each dependents and th e pattern of the e ffects of popularity appeal In sum, Hypothesis 1 w as partly supported with showing positive effects of popularity appeal for the utilitarian product on perceived quality and attitude toward the brand

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63 Test of Hypothesis 2 : Value expressive Product Hypothesis 2 predicted that, in case of a value expressive product regardless of their CNFU, subjects exposed to a popularity ap peal in advertising will show more negative quality perceptions attitudes toward the brand and purchase intentions than subjects not exposed to the popularity appeal. To test this hypothesis, 84 responses about hat advertisements, which represent value ex pressive products in this study, were analyzed by MANCOVA with quality perception, attitude toward the brand and purchase intention as the dependents, popularity appeal and CNFU as the independent variables, and product involvement as a covariate. Based on Hypothesis 2, there should be a significant main effect of popularity appeal with showing more negative quality perception, brand attitude and purchase intention for subjects exposed to popularity appeal than others not exposed to popularity appeal. In ad dition, main effect of CNFU and popularity appeal and CNFU interaction should not be significant. Table 4 9 presents multivariate results for the case of value expressive product and Table 4 10 showed univariate results for each dependent variable In mu ltivariate analysis, there was a significant main effect of popularity appeal (F(3, 77) = 3. 85 p < .05). The main effect of CNFU and popularity appeal by CNFU interaction were not significant (p > .05). In spite of the significant main effects of populari ty appeal in multivariate analysis, f urther univariate results for each dependent measure results showed that there were no significant main effects of popularity appeal on attitude toward the brand (F(1, 79) = 1.48, p > .05) and purchase intention (F(1, 7 9) = 2.06, p > .05). In univariate analysis, the only significant effect was the main effect of popularity appeal on quality perception (F(1, 79) = 9.15, p < .01). Specifically subjects exposed to popularity appeal (M = 5.12, SD = 1.31) showed more positi ve quality perception to the

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64 advertised hat brand than other subjects not exposed to popularity appeal (M = 4.34, SD = 1.27) (F(1, 82) = 9.28, p < .01). Figure 4 2 shows the plots of group means of each dependents and the pattern of the effects of populari ty appeal for each CNFU group. Obviously, t hese results were not consistent with Hypothesis 2, which predicted negative effects of popularity appeal in advertisements for value expressive appeal. As a matter of facts, the exposure to popularity appeal did not affect subjects attitudes toward the brand and purchase intentions of a value expressive product. Quality perception of a value expressive product was more positive when it was advertised with popularity appeal than advertised without it. However, ev en though the results did not support Hypothesis 2, it is noteworthy that the patterns of popularity effects in the value expressive product were different with the case of the utilitarian product that showed the significant positive effect of popularity a ppeal. Further discussion on this issue is presented at the following chapter. Test of Hypothesis 3 : Multiple function Product Hypothesis 3a and Hypothesis 3b predicted that, in case of a multiple function product which was messenger bag in this study th ere would be a significant popularity by CNFU interaction Specifically, it was hypothesized that subjects with higher (lower) CNFU will show more negative (positive) quality perceptions, attitudes and purchase intentions toward the brand advertised with t he popularity appeal is presented than without it. In testing Hypothesis 3a and 3b, data from 87 subjects who evaluated messenger bag advertisements (multiple function product) were selected and analyzed by MANCOVA with quality perception, attitude toward the brand and purchase intention

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65 as the dependents, popularity appeal and CNFU as the independent variables, and product involvement as a covariate. Table 4 11 presents multivariate results of multiple function product, and Table 4 12 showed univariate res ults for each dependent variable. As predicted MAN C OVA indicated a significant popularity appeal by CNFU interaction (F (3, 80) = 5.46 p < .01) Main effects of popularity appeal and CNFU were not significant. Further univariate analyses showed that the i nteraction of the popularity appeal by CNFU w ere significant for attitude toward the brand (F (1, 82) = 4.40 p < .05) and purchase intention (F (1, 82) = 1 0.84 p < .0 1 ) but not for quality perception (F (1, 82) = 17 p > .05) In addition there was a sig nificant main effect of CNFU on purchase intention (F (1, 82) = 4.87 p < .0 5), however because popularity appeal by CNFU interaction was disordinal, further interpretation was not proceeded. Unlike the cases of utilitarian and value expressive product s p opularity appeal for multiple function product had no significant main effect to quality perception (F(1, 82) = .73, p > .05). Figure 4 3 show s the pattern s of the interaction effects of popularity appeal by CNFU on attitude toward the brand and purchase i ntention. Specifically, high NFU subjects showed higher mean score in attitude toward the brand when they were not exposed to popularity appeal ( M = 5.56, SD = 1.19) than when they are exposed to popularity appeal ( M = 4.70, SD = 1.72) (F(1, 41) = 3.43, p = .07 ). Also, means of purchase intention of high C NFU subjects were higher when there was no popularity appeal ( M = 4.96, SD = 1.49) than when there was a popularity appeal ( M = 4.04, SD = 1.88) (F(1, 41) = 3.06, p = .09) On the other hand, low CNFU subj ects showed higher attitude scores when they were exposed to popularity appeal ( M = 4.77, SD = 1.18) than were not exposed ( M = 3.81, SD = 1.58)

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66 (F(1, 42) = 5.01, p < .05). Also, in purchase intention, when subjects CNFU were low, the means were high when there was a popularity appeal ( M = 4.02, SD = 1.56) than there was not ( M = 2.26, SD = 1.14) (F(1, 42) = 18.44, p < .001). Additional analyses showed that there were significant differences between high and low CNFU subjects in attitude toward the brand ( F(1, 41) = 15.98, p < .001) and purchase intention (F(1, 41) = 45.32, p < .001) when popularity appeal was absent However, when there was a popularity appeal, the differences of attitude toward the brand (F(1, 41) = .02, p > .05) and purchase intention (F (1, 41) = .00, p > .05) between high and low CNFU subjects were disappeared. This result indicates that the popularity appeal by CNFU interaction was caused by different responses of high and low CNFU subjects to advertisement without popularity appeal. It suggests the possibility that beside of interaction with popularity appeal, CNFU can be a factor that affects to advertising perception and its effectiveness independently. Further discussion on this issue is presented at the following chapter. In sum, H ypothesis 3 were partially supported with showing significant interactions of popularity appeal by CNFU in attitude toward the brand and purchase intentions However, there w ere no significant main effect of popularity appeal and popularity appeal by CNFU interaction effect on quality perception of multiple function product. Test of Hypothesis 4: Ad Recognition Hypothesis 4 predicted that, as a result of more attentive and elaborated processing for advertisements with popularity appeals s ubjects exposed to popularity appeals will exhibit more accurate recognition and superior recall of elements in advertising than other subjects not exposed to popularity appeals. One way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed with recall score as dependent variable and

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67 exposure of popularity appeal as independent. Contrary to Hypothesis 4, the results showed that subjects not exposed to popularity appeals ( M Recall = 2.98; M Recognition = 1.91) (F(1, 253) = 39.73, p < .001) scored higher for recall and recognition than oth er subjects exposed to popularity appeal ( M Recall = 1.23; M Recognition = 1.43) (F(1, 253) = 19.85, p < .001). Further investigation suggested that the interpretation of these results would be problematic. That is because, in stimuli manipulation, brand nam es were mentioned one more time in advertising copy in the cases of advertisements without popularity appeal, but, in other cases of advertisement with popularity appeal, the advertising copy did not contain the brand names. This could induce undesired bet ter memory for the subjects exposed to stimuli without popularity appeals than others exposed to popularity appeal. T o avoid this undesirable effects caused by the manipulation problem additional analysis was performed only with recognitions of advertisi ng slogan and layout. This recognition score was calculated by counting the numbers of correct recognition s of advertising slogan and layout. For example, if a subject correctly rec ognize d both slogan and layout, point two was assigned. If there was a corr ect rec ognition of either slogan or layout, point one was recorded. If there was no correct rec ognition the subjects were assigned point zero. Another one way ANOVA was performed with this recognition score as the dependent and exposures to popularity app eals as the independent variable. As in Table 4 13 and Table 4 14 the results showed that recognition score of subjects not exposed to popularity appeals ( M = 1.05, SD = .72) was significantly higher than others exposed to popularity appeal ( M = .80, SD = .70) (F(1, 253) = 7.76, p < .01). Again, this result was opposite against Hypothesis 4.

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68 Additional three way ANOVA with adding product type and CNFU as independent variables showed that interaction effect of popularity appeal and product type on the recog nition score was significant ( F(2, 243) = 3.78, p < .05). Further analyses showed that higher recognition of subjects not exposed to popularity appeal was only significant for subjects assessed value expressive product (F(1, 82) = 15.99, p < .001), but no t significant for utilitarian (F(1, 82) = .70, p > .05) and multiple function products (F(1, 85) = .08, p > .05). This result suggests that the significant main effect of popularity appeal on advertising recognition, which presented higher score in subject s not exposed to popularity appeal, was occurred by responses to the value expressive product Further discussion is addressed in Chapter 5. Table 4 15 and Figure 4 4 present the three way ANOVA results. Besides the main effect of popularity appeal and int eraction of popularity appeal by product type, there was no significant effect on advertising recognition. Addit ional Analyses After completing tests of the proposed hypotheses, additional data analyses were conducted in order to examine possible explanat ions for the mixed results in the main experiment, especially for the absence of any significant effects of popularity appeal for the advertisement of the value expressive product. In the analyses individual subjects were dichotomized into high and low in volvement groups based on their average scores of involvement with the test products measured by five items from the prior literature (Mittal 1995). Then, a multivariate analysis of variance ( MANOVA ) and univariate analysis including product involvement as a factor together with p op ularity appeal and CNFU as well as three dependents (i.e., quality perception, attitude toward the brand and purchase intention ) were run three time s separately for each type of product. These

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69 analyses included 84 subjects for the utilitarian product, 84 subjects for the value expressive product and 87 subjects for the multiple function product. By including one more factor namely product involvement in the analyses, the number of subjects in each cell was decreased ; thus the number in each cell ranged from 7 to 17. In the case of the utilitarian product, the three way interaction of popularity appeal, CNFU and involvement was significant (F(3, 74) = 6.97, p < .001), and univariate analyses showed a significant three way interaction for purchase intention ( p < .01). However, the three way interaction was not significant for quality perception ( p > .05) or attitude toward the brand ( p > .05). Table 4 16 and Table 4 17 summarize s the results of MANOVA and univariate analyses for the utilitarian product. Figure 4 5 show s the pattern of the results for the utilitarian product. The pattern indicates that, when subjects involvement with the product was low, both subjects with high and low CNFU showed more positive purchase inten tion for the advertisements with popularity appeal than the advertisement without popularity appeal. However, when subjects involvement was high, only subjects with low CNFU showed more positive purchase intention for the advertisement with popularity app eal, while those with high CNFU showed more negative purchase intention when they were exposed to the advertisement with the popularity appeal rather than the advertisement without the popularity appeal. Although no statistical significance occurred in the three way interaction for quality perception and attitude toward the brand, the results showed similar patterns with purchase intention indicating positive trends of popularity appeal for subjects with low involvement and other subjects with high involve ment and low CNFU. Again, the positive effects of

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70 popularity appeal to quality perception and attitude toward the brand disappeared when subjects had high involvement and high CNFU. In the case of the value expressive product, the three way interaction in MANOVA was not significant ( p > .05). However, the two way interaction between popularity appeal and involvement was ma r ginally significant (F(3, 74) = 2.53, p = .064). In addition popularity appeal and CNFU interaction (F(3, 74) = 2.80, p <. 05) and inv olvement and CNFU interaction (F(3, 74) = 6.97, p < .001) were significant. In univariate analyses, all three two way interaction effects were significant only for perceived quality ( p < .05). Th e se interactions were not significant for brand attitudes ( p > .05) or purchase intentions ( p > .05). The results of the MANOVA and univariate analyses for the value expressive product are summarized in Table 4 18 and Table 4 19 respectively As shown in Figure 4 6 graphical illustrations of involvement analyses re vealed different patterns of subjects responses for each dependent measure according to their levels of involvement for the value expressive product For the subjects with low involvement, popularity appeals positively affected quality perceptions, brand attitudes and purchase intentions regardless of the level of CNFU. However, for high involvement subjects, the popularity appeal positively affected only those subjects with low CNFU whereas subjects with high involvement and high CNFU showed more negati ve evaluations for the brand advertised with popularity appeal than without popularity appeal. In sum, the patterns of negative responses toward popularity appeals for the subjects with high involvement and high CNFU were consistent with the predictions in Hypothesis 2. However, other groups positive responses toward the popularity appeal were contra di ctor y with Hypothesis 2.

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71 In the MANOVA for the multiple function product, the three way interaction was not significant (F(3, 77) = 1.52, p > .05). However, all other two way interactions were significant (popularity appeal x involvement: F(3, 77) = 3.25, p < .05, CNFU x involvement: F(3, 77) = 4.65, p < .01, popularity appeal x CNFU: F(3, 77) = 4.96, p < .01). Univariate analyses showed a significant three w ay interaction for attitudes toward the brand ( p < .05), but not for perceived quality ( p > .05) or purchase intention ( p > .05). Other two way interactions were significant for most dependent measures ( p < .05). Exceptions were popularity appeal by CNFU i nteraction for quality perception, popularity appeal by involvement interaction for quality perception, and CNFU by involvement interaction for attitudes toward the brand. Table 4 20 and Table 4 21 summarize s the results of MANOVA and univariate analyses f or the multiple function product respectively Figure 4 7 show s the pattern of the results for the multiple function product. Unlike the cases of utilitarian and value expressive products, no clear patterns emerged in the results for the multiple function product based on product involvement. However, when subjects had both high product involvement and CNFU, popularity appeals negatively affected their brand attitudes and purchase intentions, and their perceptions of product quality were not affected by pop ularity appeal. For subjects with high involvement and low CNFU, popularity appeal negatively affected their quality perceptions and brand attitudes, and their purchase intentions were not affected by popularity appeals. In cases of subjects with low invol vement and high CNFU, popularity appeal affect neither positive ly nor negative ly affected their responses. Finally when subjects had low involvement and low CNFU, the popularity appeal positively affected all dependent measures. In sum, for the multiple f unction product, when subjects had

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72 high CNFU, popularity appeals negatively affected high involvement subjects, but had no effect on low involvement subjects. On the other hand, when subjects had low CNFU, popularity appeals positively affected low involve ment subjects, but had no effect on high involvement subjects. These analyses confirmed Hypothesis 3 with only two groups of subjects: the high involvement and high CNFU group and the low involvement and low CNFU group. For other groups, the results were n ot consistent with Hypothesis 3.

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73 Table 4 1 Demographics of the p articipants in the m ain e xperiment Frequency (N) Percent (%) Gender Male 72 28.2 Female 183 71.8 Total 255 100.0 Race Caucasian 194 76.1 Hispanic 39 15.3 Black or African Ameri can 13 5.1 Asian or Pacific Islander 9 3.5 Total 255 100.0 Age M = 20.2 SD = 1.25 Table 4 2. Results of one way ANOVA for g ender Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. Quality Perception Between Groups .0 2 1 .0 2 .0 1 .93 Within Groups 563.2 3 253 2.2 3 Total 563.24 254 Attitude toward the Brand Between Groups 4.4 5 1 4.4 5 2.19 .14 Within Groups 513.4 7 253 2.03 Total 517.91 254 Purchase Intention Between Groups 1.9 3 1 1.9 3 .66 .4 2 Within Groups 733.6 1 253 2.90 Total 735.53 254 Table 4 3 Experimental group descriptions and frequencies Group Description Frequency (N) Percent (%) Popularity Appeal Product Type CNFU Group 1 Presence Utilitarian Utilitarian High 23 9.0 Group 2 Presence Low 21 8.2 Group 3 Presence Value expressive Value expressive High 21 8.2 Group 4 Presence Low 22 8.6 Group 5 Presence Multiple function Multiple function High 24 9.4 Group 6 Presence Low 20 7.8 Group 7 Absence Utilitarian Utilitarian High 19 7.5 Group 8 Absence Low 21 8.2 Group 9 Absence Value expressive Value expressive High 20 7.8 Group 10 Absence Low 21 8.2 Group 11 Absence Multiple function Multiple function High 19 7.5 Group 12 Absence Low 24 9.4 Total 255 100

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74 Table 4 4 Group Means of d ependent m easures 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Presence Absence Utilitarian Value expressive Multiple function Utilitarian Value expressive Multiple function High CNFU Low CNFU High CNFU Low CNFU High CNFU Low CNFU High CNFU Low CNFU High CNFU Low CNFU High CNFU Low CNFU Quality Perception 4.76 (1.65) 4.76 (1.93) 5.00 (1.47) 5.38 (1.13) 4.68 (1.28) 4.57 (1.31) 4.26 (1.37) 3.02 (1.35) 4.55 (.93) 4.14 (1.52) 4.68 (1.23) 4.06 (1.42) Attitude toward the Brand 4.57 (1.48) 4.91 (1.52) 4.76 (1.09) 5.13 (1.41) 4.70 (1.72) 4.77 (1.18) 4.4 8 (1.15) 3.69 (1.10) 4.52 (1.14) 4.69 (1.55) 5.56 (1.18) 3.81 (1.59) Purchase Intention 3.77 (1.56) 4.08 (2.26) 4.00 (1.39) 4.09 (1.51) 4.04 (1.87) 4.02 (1.56) 3.77 (1.48) 2.84 (1.28) 3.75 (1.87) 3.75 (1.57) 4.96 (1.49) 2.26 (1.14) Note: Standard deviati ons are in parentheses

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75 T able 4 5. Multivariate tests of t hree way i nteraction Effect Value F Hypothesis df Error df Sig. Intercept Pillai's Trace .59 116.12 3 240 .00 Wilks' Lambda .41 116.12 3 240 .00 Hotelling's Trace 1.45 116.12 3 240 .00 Ro y's Largest Root 1.45 116.12 3 240 .00 Involvement Pillai's Trace .20 19.88 3 240 .00 Wilks' Lambda .80 19.88 3 240 .00 Hotelling's Trace .25 19.88 3 240 .00 Roy's Largest Root .25 19.88 3 240 .00 Popular ity Appeal Pillai's Trace .08 6.94 3 240 .00 Wilks' Lambda .92 6.94 3 240 .00 Hotelling's Trace .09 6.94 3 240 .00 Roy's Largest Root .09 6.94 3 240 .00 Product Type Pillai's Trace .04 1.45 6 482 .19 Wilks' Lambda .96 1.45 6 480 .19 Hotelling's Trace .04 1.45 6 478 .19 Roy's Largest Roo t .03 2.65 3 241 .05 CNFU Pillai's Trace .01 .98 3 240 .40 Wilks' Lambda .99 .98 3 240 .40 Hotelling's Trace .01 .98 3 240 .40 Roy's Largest Root .01 .98 3 240 .40 Popular ity Appeal x Product Type Pillai's Trace .02 .98 6 482 .44 Wilks' Lambda 98 .98 6 480 .44 Hotelling's Trace .02 .98 6 478 .44 Roy's Largest Root .02 1.87 3 241 .14 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Pillai's Trace .04 3.75 3 240 .01 Wilks' Lambda .96 3.75 3 240 .01 Hotelling's Trace .05 3.75 3 240 .01 Roy's Largest Root .05 3. 75 3 240 .01 Product Type x CNFU Pillai's Trace .06 2.35 6 482 .03 Wilks' Lambda .94 2.36 6 480 .03 Hotelling's Trace .06 2.36 6 478 .03 Roy's Largest Root .05 4.01 3 241 .01 Popular ity Appeal x Product Type x CNFU Pillai's Trace .07 2.75 6 482 .01 Wilks' Lambda .93 2.77 6 480 .01 Hotelling's Trace .07 2.80 6 478 .01 Roy's Largest Root .07 5.28 3 241 .00

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76 Table 4 6. Univariate tests of three way interaction Source Dependent Variable Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model Quality Perception 83.91 12.00 6.99 3.53 .00 .15 Attitude toward the Brand 70.49 12.00 5.87 3.18 00 .1 4 Purchase Intention 196.69 12.00 16.39 7.36 .00 .28 Intercept Quality Perception 497.43 1.00 497.43 251.14 .00 .8 9 Attitude t oward the Brand 463.64 1.00 463.64 250.77 .00 .91 Purchase Intention 124.70 1.00 124.70 56.00 .00 .1 8 Involvement Quality Perception 2.63 1.00 2.63 1.33 .25 .0 1 Attitude toward the Brand 10.44 1.00 10.44 5.65 .02 .02 Purchase Intention 88.66 1.00 88 .66 39.82 .00 .1 3 Popular ity Appeal Quality Perception 35.92 1.00 35.92 18.14 .00 .06 Attitude toward the Brand 9.03 1.00 9.03 4.88 .03 .0 2 Purchase Intention 17.25 1.00 17.25 7.75 .01 .0 3 Product Type Quality Perception 12.69 2.00 6.34 3.20 .04 .02 Attitude toward the Brand 4.80 2.00 2.40 1.30 .27 .0 1 Purchase Intention 1.59 2.00 .80 .36 .70 .0 0 CNFU Quality Perception 4.85 1.00 4.85 2.45 .12 .0 1 Attitude toward the Brand 1.78 1.00 1.78 0.96 .33 .00 Purchase Intention 4.21 1.00 4.21 1.89 .17 .0 1 Popular ity Appeal x Product Type Quality Perception 8.83 2.00 4.41 2.23 .11 .0 2 Attitude toward the Brand 4.70 2.00 2.35 1.27 .28 .0 1 Purchase Intention 1.61 2.00 .81 .36 .70 .00 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Quality Perception 10.81 1.00 10.81 5.46 .02 .0 2 Attitude toward the Brand 16.17 1.00 16.17 8.75 .00 .03 Purchase Intention 23.44 1.00 23.44 10.53 .00 .03 Product Type x CNFU Quality Perception 3.48 2.00 1.74 0.88 .42 .0 1 Attitude toward the Brand 8.89 2.00 4.45 2.41 .09 .0 2 Purchase Int ention 9.26 2.00 4.63 2.08 .13 .0 1 Popular ity Appeal x Product Type x CNFU Quality Perception 2.13 2.00 1.07 0.54 .58 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 6.21 2.00 3.11 1.68 .19 .01 Purchase Intention 13.36 2.00 6.68 3.00 .05 .0 2 Error Quality Perception 4 79.33 242.00 1.98 Attitude toward the Brand 447.42 242.00 1.85 Purchase Intention 538.84 242.00 2.23 Total Quality Perception 5713.50 255.00 Attitude toward the Brand 5957.96 255.00 Purchase Intention 4329.42 255.00 Corrected Total Quality Perception 563.24 254.00 Attitude toward the Brand 517.91 254.00 Purchase Intention 735.53 254.00

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77 Table 4 7 Multivariate tests (utilitarian product) Effect Value F Hypothesis df Error df Sig. Inte rcept Pillai's Trace .6 5 46.5 7 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lambda .3 6 46.5 7 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace 1.81 46.5 7 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root 1.81 46.5 7 3 77 .00 Involvement Pillai's Trace .18 5.7 1 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lambda .8 2 5.7 1 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace .22 5.7 1 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root .22 5.7 1 3 77 .00 Popular ity Appeal Pillai's Trace .1 2 3.37 3 77 .02 Wilks' Lambda .8 8 3.37 3 77 .02 Hotelling's Trace .13 3.37 3 77 .02 Roy's Largest Root .13 3.37 3 77 .02 CNFU Pillai's Trace .06 1.72 3 77 17 Wilks' Lambda .9 4 1.72 3 77 .17 Hotelling's Trace .0 7 1.72 3 77 .17 Roy's Largest Root .0 7 1.72 3 77 .17 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Pillai's Trace .05 1.37 3 77 .2 6 Wilks' Lambda .9 5 1.37 3 77 .2 6 Hotelling's Trace .05 1.37 3 77 .2 6 Roy's Lar gest Root .05 1.37 3 77 .2 6

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78 Table 4 8. Univariate t ests ( u tilitarian p roduct) Source Dependent Variable Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model Quality Perception 43.65 4.00 10.91 4.22 .00 .18 Attitude toward the Brand 18.50 4.00 4.63 2.60 .04 .12 Purchase Intention 28.23 4.00 7.06 2.56 .04 .11 Intercept Quality Perception 173.04 1.00 173.04 66.85 .00 .70 Attitude toward the Brand 199.75 1.00 199.75 112.33 .00 1.27 Purchase Intention 58.33 1.00 58.33 21.17 .00 .23 Involvement Quality Perception .67 1.00 .67 .26 .61 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 1.43 1.00 1.43 .80 .37 .01 Purchase Intention 10.11 1.00 10.11 3.67 .06 .04 Popular ity Appeal Quality Perception 24.82 1.00 24.82 9.59 .00 .10 Attitude toward the Brand 8.15 1.00 8.15 4.58 .04 .05 Purchase Intention 10.05 1.00 10.05 3.65 .06 .04 CNFU Quality Perception 8.64 1.00 8.64 3.34 .07 .04 Attitude toward the B rand 1.62 1.00 1.62 .91 .34 .01 Purchase Intention .53 1.00 .53 .19 .66 .00 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Quality Perception 6.96 1.00 6.96 2.69 .11 .03 Attitude toward the Brand 5.48 1.00 5.48 3.08 .08 .03 Purchase Intention 11.39 1.00 11.39 4.13 .05 .0 5 Error Quality Perception 204.49 79.00 2.59 Attitude toward the Brand 140.48 79.00 1.78 Purchase Intention 217.66 79.00 2.76 Total Quality Perception 1740.00 84.00 Attitude toward the Brand 1797.56 84.00 Purchase Intention 1343.64 84.00 Corrected Total Q uality Perception 248.14 83.00 Attitude toward the Brand 158.98 83.00 Purchase Intention 245.89 83.00

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79 Table 4 9 Multivariate tests (value expressive product) Effect Value F Hypothesis df Error df Sig. Intercept Pill ai's Trace .66 50.19 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lambda .3 4 50.19 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace 1.9 6 50.19 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root 1.9 6 50.19 3 77 .00 Involvement Pillai's Trace .2 5 8.5 1 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lambda .75 8.5 1 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace .33 8.5 1 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root .33 8.5 1 3 77 .00 Popular ity Appeal Pillai's Trace .13 3.8 5 3 77 .01 Wilks' Lambda .87 3.8 5 3 77 .01 Hotelling's Trace .15 3.8 5 3 77 .01 Roy's Largest Root .15 3.8 5 3 77 .01 CNFU Pillai's Trace .0 3 .6 9 3 77 .56 Wilks' Lambda .97 .6 9 3 77 .56 Hotelling's Trace .0 3 .6 9 3 77 .56 Roy's Largest Root .0 3 .6 9 3 77 .56 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Pillai's Trace .0 5 1.2 8 3 77 .2 9 Wilks' Lambda .95 1.2 8 3 77 .2 9 Hotelling's Trace .05 1.2 8 3 77 .2 9 Roy's Largest Root .05 1.2 8 3 77 .2 9

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80 Table 4 10. Univariate t ests ( value expressive p roduct) Source Dependent Variable Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model Quality Perception 19.01 4 4.75 2.83 .03 .13 Attitude toward the Brand 4.31 4 1.08 .62 .65 .03 Purchase Intention 33.42 4 8.35 3.87 .01 .16 Intercept Quality Perception 186.73 1 186.73 111.19 .00 1 .23 Attitude toward the Brand 19 3.30 1 193.30 110.67 .00 1.36 Purchase Intention 39.67 1 39.67 18.35 .00 .19 Involvement Quality Perception .32 1 .32 .19 .66 .00 Attitude toward the Brand .11 1 .11 .06 .80 .00 Purchase Intention 31.45 1 31.45 14.55 .00 .15 Popular ity Appeal Quali ty Perception 15.36 1 15.36 9.15 .00 .10 Attitude toward the Brand 2.54 1 2.54 1.46 .23 .02 Purchase Intention 4.46 1 4.46 2.06 .16 .02 CNFU Quality Perception .00 1 .00 .00 .98 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 1.51 1 1.51 .86 .36 .01 Purchase Intent ion .18 1 .18 .08 .78 .00 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Quality Perception 3.15 1 3.15 1.88 .17 .02 Attitude toward the Brand .19 1 .19 .11 .74 .00 Purchase Intention .02 1 .02 .01 .92 .00 Error Quality Perception 132.67 79 1.68 Attitude toward the Brand 137.98 79 1.75 Purchase Intention 170.74 79 2.16 Total Quality Perception 2070.75 84 Attitude toward the Brand 2062.32 84 Purchase Intention 1482.26 84 Corrected Total Quality Perception 151.68 83 Atti tude toward the Brand 142.29 83 Purchase Intention 204.15 83

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81 Table 4 11 Multivariate tests (multiple function product) Effect Value F Hypothesis df Error df Sig. Intercept Pillai's Trace .5 7 34.77 3 80 .00 Wilks' Lambda .43 34.77 3 8 0 .00 Hotelling's Trace 1.30 34.77 3 80 .00 Roy's Largest Root 1.30 34.77 3 80 .00 Involvement Pillai's Trace .29 11.0 5 3 80 .00 Wilks' Lambda .7 1 11.0 5 3 80 .00 Hotelling's Trace .4 11.0 5 3 80 .00 Roy's Largest Root .414 11.0 5 3 80 .00 Popular ity Appeal Pillai's Trace .0 5 1.3 2 3 80 .2 8 Wilks' Lambda .95 1.3 2 3 80 .2 8 Hotelling's Trace .0 5 1.3 2 3 80 .2 8 Roy's Largest Root .0 5 1.3 2 3 80 .2 8 CNFU Pillai's Trace .08 2.42 3 80 .07 Wilks' Lambda .9 2 2.42 3 80 .07 Hotelling's Trace .09 2.42 3 80 .07 Roy's Largest Root .09 2.42 3 80 .07 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Pillai's Trace .1 7 5.3 5 3 80 .00 Wilks' Lambda .83 5.35 3 80 .00 Hotelling's Trace .20 5.3 5 3 80 .00 Roy's Largest Root .20 5.3 5 3 80 .00

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82 Table 4 12. Univariate t ests ( mult iple function product ) Source Dependent Variable Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model Quality Perception 13.57 4 3.39 2.04 .10 .09 Attitude toward the Brand 66.23 4 16.56 9.39 .00 .35 Purchase Intention 136.26 4 34.06 19.16 .00 .60 Intercept Quality Perception 143.51 1 143.51 86.26 .00 .99 Attitude toward the Bran d 95.86 1 95.86 54.34 .00 .51 Purchase Intention 31.22 1 31.22 17.56 .00 .14 Involvement Quality Perception 7.39 1 7.39 4.44 .04 .05 Attitude toward the Brand 33.22 1 33.22 18.83 .00 .18 Purchase Intention 51.74 1 51.74 29.10 .00 .23 Popular ity App eal Quality Perception 1.21 1 1.21 .73 .40 .01 Attitude toward the Brand .00 1 .00 .00 .98 .00 Purchase Intention 2.79 1 2.79 1.57 .21 .01 CNFU Quality Perception .23 1 .23 .14 .71 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 1.65 1 1.65 .93 .34 .01 Purchase Int ention 8.66 1 8.66 4.87 .03 .04 Popular ity Appeal x CNFU Quality Perception .28 1 .28 .17 .68 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 7.76 1 7.76 4.40 .04 .04 Purchase Intention 19.27 1 19.27 10.84 .00 .08 Error Quality Perception 136.42 82 1.66 Attitud e toward the Brand 144.65 82 1.76 Purchase Intention 145.80 82 1.78 Total Quality Perception 1902.75 87 Attitude toward the Brand 2098.08 87 Purchase Intention 1503.52 87 Corrected Total Quality Perception 149.99 86 Attitude toward the Brand 210.87 86 Purchase Intention 282.05 86

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83 Table 4 13. Means of recognition score N Mean SD Popularity Appeal Absence Presence Total 124 131 255 1.05 .80 .92 .72 .70 .72 Table 4 14. Effect of popularity appeal on recognition score Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Between Groups 3.88 1 3.88 7.76 .01 .03 Within Groups 126.55 253 .50 Total 130.43 254 Table 4 15. Three way ANOVA for recognition score Source Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model 14.41 11 1.31 2.74 .00 .11 Intercept 219.65 1 219.65 460.04 .00 1.69 Popularity Appeal 3.95 1 3.95 8.27 .00 .03 CNFU .77 1 .77 1.60 .21 .01 Product Type 2.45 2 1.22 2.56 .08 .02 Popularity Appeal x CNFU .66 1 .66 1.3 8 .24 .01 Popularity Appeal x Product Type 3.61 2 1.80 3.78 .02 .03 CNFU x Product Type 1.35 2 .68 1.42 .25 .01 Popularity Appeal x CNFU x Product Type 1.44 2 .72 1.51 .23 0 1 Error 116.02 243 .48 Total 347.00 255 Corrected Total 130.43 254

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84 Table 4 16. Multivariate analyses of involvement effects ( utilitarian p roduct) Effect Value F Hypothesis df Error df Sig. Intercept Pillai's Trace .92 287.06 3 74 .00 Wilks' Lambda .08 287.06 3 74 .00 Hotelling's Trace 11.64 287.06 3 74 .00 Ro y's Largest Root 11.64 287.06 3 74 .00 Popularity Appeal Pillai's Trace .15 4.25 3 74 .01 Wilks' Lambda .85 4.25 3 74 .01 Hotelling's Trace .17 4.25 3 74 .01 Roy's Largest Root .17 4.25 3 74 .01 Involvement Pillai's Trace .19 5.73 3 74 .00 Wilks' Lambda .81 5.73 3 74 .00 Hotelling's Trace .23 5.73 3 74 .00 Roy's Largest Root .23 5.73 3 74 .00 CNFU Pillai's Trace .05 1.36 3 74 .26 Wilks' Lambda .95 1.36 3 74 .26 Hotelling's Trace .06 1.36 3 74 .26 Roy's Largest Root .06 1.36 3 74 .26 Po pularity Appeal x Involvement Pillai's Trace .04 1.14 3 74 .34 Wilks' Lambda .96 1.14 3 74 .34 Hotelling's Trace .05 1.14 3 74 .34 Roy's Largest Root .05 1.14 3 74 .34 Popularity Appeal x CNFU Pillai's Trace .05 1.33 3 74 .27 Wilks' Lambda .95 1.3 3 3 74 .27 Hotelling's Trace .05 1.33 3 74 .27 Roy's Largest Root .05 1.33 3 74 .27 Involvement x CNFU Pillai's Trace .01 .24 3 74 .87 Wilks' Lambda .99 .24 3 74 .87 Hotelling's Trace .01 .24 3 74 .87 Roy's Largest Root .01 .24 3 74 .87 Popular ity Appeal x Involvement x CNFU Pillai's Trace .22 6.97 3 74 .00 Wilks' Lambda .78 6.97 3 74 .00 Hotelling's Trace .28 6.97 3 74 .00 Roy's Largest Root .28 6.97 3 74 .00

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85 Table 4 17. Univariate analyses of involvement effects (utilitarian product) Source Dependent Variable Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model Quality Perception 52.96 7 7.57 2.95 .01 .21 Attitude toward the Brand 18.68 7 2.67 1.45 .20 .12 Purchase Intention 56.75 7 8.11 3.26 .00 .22 Intercept Quality Perception 1446.17 1 1446.17 563.11 .00 5 .84 Attitude toward the Bran d 1601.99 1 1601.99 867.81 .00 10.08 Purchase Intention 1085.57 1 1085.57 436.20 .00 4.30 Popularity Appeal Quality Perception 28.82 1 28.82 11.22 .00 .12 Attitude toward the Brand 9.29 1 9.29 5.03 .03 .06 Purchase Intention 13.52 1 13.52 5.43 .02 05 Involvement Quality Perception .85 1 .85 .33 .57 .00 Attitude toward the Brand .01 1 .01 .00 .96 .00 Purchase Intention 16.07 1 16.07 6.46 .01 .06 CNFU Quality Perception 6.43 1 6.43 2.50 .12 .03 Attitude toward the Brand .98 1 .98 .53 .47 .01 Purchase Intention .29 1 .29 .12 .73 .00 Popularity Appeal x Involvement Quality Perception 3.40 1 3.40 1.32 .25 .01 Attitude toward the Brand .10 1 .10 .06 .81 .00 Purchase Intention .69 1 .69 .28 .60 .00 Popularity Appeal x CNFU Quality Perception 7.37 1 7.37 2.87 .09 .03 Attitude toward the Brand 6.89 1 6.89 3.73 .06 .04 Purchase Intention 8.87 1 8.87 3.56 .06 .04 Involvement x CNFU Quality Perception .88 1 .88 .34 .56 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 1.14 1 1.14 .62 .44 .01 Purchase Intenti on 1.57 1 1.57 .63 .43 .01 Popularity Appeal x Involvement x CNFU Quality Perception 4.75 1 4.75 1.85 .18 .02 Attitude toward the Brand .25 1 .25 .14 .71 .00 Purchase Intention 22.30 1 22.30 8.96 .00 .09 Error Quality Perception 195.18 76 2.57 Attitude toward the Brand 140.30 76 1.85 Purchase Intention 189.14 76 2.49 Total Quality Perception 1740.00 84 Attitude toward the Brand 1797.56 84 Purchase Intention 1343.64 84 Corrected Total Quality Perception 248 .14 83 Attitude toward the Brand 158.98 83 Purchase Intention 245.89 83

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86 Table 4 18. Multivariate analyses of involvement effects (value expressive product) Effect Value F Hypothesis df Error df Sig. Intercept Pillai's Trace 95 445.91 3 74 .00 Wilks' Lambda .05 445.91 3 74 .00 Hotelling's Trace 18.08 445.91 3 74 .00 Roy's Largest Root 18.08 445.91 3 74 .00 Popularity Appeal Pillai's Trace .10 2.80 3 74 .05 Wilks' Lambda .90 2.80 3 74 .05 Hotelling's Trace .11 2.80 3 74 .05 Roy's Largest Root .11 2.80 3 74 .05 Involvement Pillai's Trace .14 4.01 3 74 .01 Wilks' Lambda .86 4.01 3 74 .01 Hotelling's Trace .16 4.01 3 74 .01 Roy's Largest Root .16 4.01 3 74 .01 CNFU Pillai's Trace .03 .75 3 74 .53 Wilks' Lambd a .97 .75 3 74 .53 Hotelling's Trace .03 .75 3 74 .53 Roy's Largest Root .03 .75 3 74 .53 Popularity Appeal x Involvement Pillai's Trace .09 2.53 3 74 .06 Wilks' Lambda .91 2.53 3 74 .06 Hotelling's Trace .10 2.53 3 74 .06 Roy's Largest Root .10 2.53 3 74 .06 Popularity Appeal x CNFU Pillai's Trace .10 2.80 3 74 .05 Wilks' Lambda .90 2.80 3 74 .05 Hotelling's Trace .11 2.80 3 74 .05 Roy's Largest Root .11 2.80 3 74 .05 Involvement x CNFU Pillai's Trace .22 6.97 3 74 .00 Wilks' Lambda .7 8 6.97 3 74 .00 Hotelling's Trace .28 6.97 3 74 .00 Roy's Largest Root .28 6.97 3 74 .00 Popularity Appeal x Involvement x CNFU Pillai's Trace .04 .98 3 74 .41 Wilks' Lambda .96 .98 3 74 .41 Hotelling's Trace .04 .98 3 74 .41 Roy's Largest Root .04 .98 3 74 .41

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87 Table 4 19. Univariate analyses of involvement effects (value expressive product) Source Dependent Variable Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model Quality Perception 49.37 7 7.05 5.24 .00 .33 Attitude toward the Brand 14.15 7 2.02 1.20 .31 .10 Purchase Intention 26.79 7 3.83 1.64 .14 .13 Intercept Quality Perception 1767.20 1 1767.20 1312.80 .00 11.88 Attitude toward the Br and 1772.16 1 1772.16 1051.07 .00 12.36 Purchase Intention 1181.96 1 1181.96 506.47 .00 5.80 Popularity Appeal Quality Perception 7.96 1 7.96 5.91 .0 2 .05 Attitude toward the Brand 1.07 1 1.07 .64 .43 .01 Purchase Intention 1.98 1 1.98 .85 .36 .01 Involvement Quality Perception .56 1 .56 .42 .52 .00 Attitude toward the Brand .58 1 .58 .34 .56 .00 Purchase Intention 10.30 1 10.30 4.41 .04 .05 CNFU Quality Perception .35 1 .35 .26 .61 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 2.87 1 2.87 1.70 .20 .02 Pur chase Intention .81 1 .81 .35 .56 .00 Popularity Appeal x Involvement Quality Perception 7.13 1 7.13 5.29 .02 .05 Attitude toward the Brand .94 1 .94 .56 .46 .01 Purchase Intention 3.05 1 3.05 1.31 .26 .01 Popularity Appeal x CNFU Quality Perception 6.96 1 6.96 5.17 .03 .05 Attitude toward the Brand 1.03 1 1.03 .61 .44 .01 Purchase Intention .06 1 .06 .03 .87 .00 Involvement x CNFU Quality Perception 23.39 1 23.39 17.38 .00 .16 Attitude toward the Brand 5.95 1 5.95 3.53 .06 .04 Purchase Inten tion 8.32 1 8.32 3.57 .06 .04 Popularity Appeal x Involvement x CNFU Quality Perception .11 1 .11 .08 .78 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 2.82 1 2.82 1.67 .20 .02 Purchase Intention 2.06 1 2.06 .88 .35 .01 Error Quality Perception 102.31 76 1.35 Attitude toward the Brand 128.14 76 1.69 Purchase Intention 177.36 76 2.33 Total Quality Perception 2070.75 84 Attitude toward the Brand 2062.32 84 Purchase Intention 1482.26 84 Corrected Total Quality Perception 151 .68 83 Attitude toward the Brand 142.29 83 Purchase Intention 204.15 83

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88 Table 4 20. Multivariate analyses of involvement effects (multiple function product) Effect Value F Hypothesis df Error df Sig. Intercept Pillai's Trace .95 447.99 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lambda .05 447.99 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace 17.45 447.99 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root 17.45 447.99 3 77 .00 Popularity Appeal Pillai's Trace .08 2.30 3 77 .08 Wilks' Lambda .92 2.30 3 77 .08 Hotelling's Trace .09 2.30 3 77 .08 Roy's Largest Root .09 2.30 3 77 .08 Involvement Pillai's Trace .24 8.17 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lambda .76 8.17 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace .32 8.17 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root .32 8.17 3 77 .00 CNFU Pillai's Trace .16 4.90 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lam bda .84 4.90 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace .19 4.90 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root .19 4.90 3 77 .00 Popularity Appeal x Involvement Pillai's Trace .11 3.25 3 77 .03 Wilks' Lambda .89 3.25 3 77 .03 Hotelling's Trace .13 3.25 3 77 .03 Roy's Largest Roo t .13 3.25 3 77 .03 Popularity Appeal x CNFU Pillai's Trace .16 4.96 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lambda .84 4.96 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace .19 4.96 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root .19 4.96 3 77 .00 Involvement x CNFU Pillai's Trace .15 4.65 3 77 .00 Wilks' Lamb da .85 4.65 3 77 .00 Hotelling's Trace .18 4.65 3 77 .00 Roy's Largest Root .18 4.65 3 77 .00 Popularity Appeal x Involvement x CNFU Pillai's Trace .06 1.52 3 77 .22 Wilks' Lambda .94 1.52 3 77 .22 Hotelling's Trace .06 1.52 3 77 .22 Roy's Large st Root .06 1.52 3 77 .22

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89 Table 4 21. Univariate analyses of involvement effects (multiple function product) Source Dependent Variable Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. 2 Corrected Model Quality Perception 38.23 7 5.46 3.86 .00 .26 Attitude toward the Brand 79.76 7 11.39 6.87 .00 .42 Purchase Intention 149.68 7 21.38 12.76 .00 .09 Intercept Quality Perception 1625.32 1 1625.32 1148.86 .00 11.12 Attitude toward th e Brand 1833.01 1 1833.01 1104.45 .00 9.63 Purchase Intention 1183.80 1 1183.80 706.46 .00 .70 Popularity Appeal Quality Perception 2.00 1 2.00 1.42 .24 .01 Attitude toward the Brand .05 1 .05 .03 .86 .00 Purchase Intention 3.21 1 3.21 1.91 .17 .00 Involvement Quality Perception 10.20 1 10.20 7.21 .01 .07 Attitude toward the Brand 24.05 1 24.05 14.49 .00 .13 Purchase Intention 41.98 1 41.98 25.05 .00 .02 CNFU Quality Perception .51 1 .51 .36 .55 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 4.66 1 4.66 2.81 .10 .02 Purchase Intention 19.27 1 19.27 11.50 .00 .01 Popularity Appeal x Involvement Quality Perception 4.45 1 4.45 3.15 .08 .03 Attitude toward the Brand 14.78 1 14.78 8.91 .00 .08 Purchase Intention 14.20 1 14.20 8.47 .00 .01 Popularity Appeal x CNFU Quality Perception .18 1 .18 .13 .72 .00 Attitude toward the Brand 6.87 1 6.87 4.14 .05 .04 Purchase Intention 19.02 1 19.02 11.35 .00 .01 Involvement x CNFU Quality Perception 14.20 1 14.20 10.04 .00 .10 Attitude toward the Brand 2.07 1 2.07 1.25 .27 .01 Purchase Intention 9.17 1 9.17 5.48 .02 .01 Popularity Appeal x Involvement x CNFU Quality Perception 2.84 1 2.84 2.00 .16 .02 Attitude toward the Brand 6.66 1 6.66 4.01 .05 .03 Purchase Intention 1.84 1 1.84 1.10 .30 .00 Error Qualit y Perception 111.76 79 1.41 Attitude toward the Brand 131.11 79 1.66 Purchase Intention 132.38 79 1.68 Total Quality Perception 1902.75 87 Attitude toward the Brand 2098.08 87 Purchase Intention 1503.52 87 Corrected Total Quality Percepti on 149.99 86 Attitude toward the Brand 210.87 86 Purchase Intention 282.05 86

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90 Figure 4 1. Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU on: A) Qu ality Perception. B) Attitude toward the Brand. C) Purchase Intention (Utilitarian Product)

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91 Figure 4 2. Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU on: A) Quality Perceptio n. B ) Attitude toward the Brand. C) Purchase Intention (Value Expressive Product)

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92 Figure 4 3. Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU on: A) Quality Perception. B) Atti tude toward the Brand. C) Purchase Intention (Multiple Function Product)

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93 Figure 4 4 Effects of Popularity Appeal and Product Type on Advertising Recognition

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94 Figur e 4 5 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU for: A) High Involvement Group. B) Low Involvement Group (Utilitarian Product)

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95 Figure 4 6 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU for: A) High Involveme nt Group. B) Low Involvement Group (Value Expressive Product)

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96 Figure 4 7 Effects of Popularity Appeal and CNFU for: A) High Involvement Group. B) Low Involvement Group (Multiple Function Product )

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97 CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION Using experimental design, this study tested the effects of popularity appeals on consumers quality perception, attitude toward a brand, purchase intention and brand awareness for three types of products in two groups of consumers with high or low consumers need for uniqueness (CNFU). Given the importance of brand popularity as a cue in consumer behavior, this study attempted to achieve several goals. First, it was intended to contribute to the body of knowledge in cue utilizati on theory through an exploration of brand popularity as an important cue that affect s consumers brand perceptions and attitudes. Second, it sought to add to the body of knowledge in two aspects of social influence, conformity and uniqueness seeking, by in vestigating combined effects of popularity appeals product types, and consumers individual differences in need for uniqueness on brand attitudes The final goal was to contribute to advertising research by investigating the effects of popularity appeals which are commonly used but under examined in advertising practice. In the main experiment, responses from 255 undergraduate students were analyzed to test the hypothesized effects of popularity appeal s Results of this study revealed that, overall, popu larity appeals ha ve differ ing effects on quality perceptions, brand attitudes and purchase intentions ; these effects depend on both product type associated with particular types of attitude functions and individual differences in CNFU. However, the result s of testing each individual hypothesis were mixed. In utilitarian and multiple function products, the hypothesized effects of popularity appeals were partially confirmed I n the case of value expressive product however, popularity appeal s did not

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98 produce any effect on brand attitudes In addition, recognition tests did not confirm the hypothesized positive effects of popularity appeal s This chapter is organized into three parts The first section summarizes findings from Chapter 4 The second section p resents i nterpretation of the results of the experiment and implication s of the research findings The chapter concludes by discussing limitations of this study and suggesting directions for future research. Summary of Results This section describes findi ngs from multivariate and univariate analyses of the effects of popularity appeals combined with attitude functions associated with different types of products and different levels of CNFU on quality perceptions of advertised brands, attitudes toward the b rands, purchase intention and brand awareness. Interaction of Popularity Appeal, Product Type and CNFU In multivariate analysis, a significant three way interaction of popularity appeal, product type and CNFU existed This indicated that, as expected, the effects of popularity appeal s can vary depending both on types of products and on individual differences in CNFU. In univariate analyses, the three way interaction was marginally significant in purchase intention, but not significant in quality percep tion or attitude toward the advertised brand. This result indicate d that the three way interaction significantly affected the combined responses to the advertised brand, but the interaction was not significantly strong in individual responses related to ea ch dependent measure. However, further analyses with separat e product types showed obviously different patterns in the effect of popularity appeal s and CNFU on each dependent variable based on attitude functions associated with each product type (i.e., uti litarian, value expressive and multiple function )

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99 Hypothesis 1 Hypothesis 1 predicted that when consumers base their attitude toward an advertised product on utilitarian function, the popularity appeal positively affect s their responses because it serve s as a cue that secure s product quality and signal s social acceptance of the advertised brand. Results of the main experiment confirmed several predictions in Hypothesis 1 The results revealed a significant and positive main effect of popularity appeal on quality perception and attitude toward the brand and marginal significance on purchase intention. However, this pattern of positive effects of popularity appeal s was more salient in respondents with low CNFU than those with high CNFU. Specifically, bran d attitude and purchase intention of high CNFU respondents exposed to the popularity appeal did not differ from high CNFU respondents who were not exposed to the popularity appeal. This result suggest ed the possibility that, even in cases of utilitarian pr oducts, the popularity appeal works only for consumers who rate low in uniqueness seeking. In other words, this finding indicate d that, in this case, CNFU served as a trait variable that is consistent across different situations, rather than a state variab le that can be activated or changed based on situational factors. In sum, Hypothesis 1 was partially supported with the results showing positive effects of popularity appeal s on respondents with low CNFU. Hypothesis 2 In contrast to Hypothesis 1, Hypothe sis 2 predicted negative effects of popularity appeal s on quality perception, brand attitude and purchase intention for products associated with the value expressive function in consumers attitude formation because consumers might seek uniqueness to expr ess their distinct identity in these product domains. However, this study demonstrated that the effects of popularity appeal s on

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100 brand attitude and purchase intention were not significant for a fictitious hat brand that was chosen as a value expressive pro duct Moreover, quality perception of the brand advertised with the popularity appeal was more positive than that for the brand advertised without the popularity appeal. This result may be due to the unfamiliarity of the selected product category ; thus, mo st respondents used information about brand popularity as a cue to judge the product quality regardless of attitude function. In other words Hypothesis 2 was not confirmed in this study. There can be several possible explanations about why, in the presen t experiment, the popularity appeal for the value expressive product did not produc e any effect on consumers brand attitudes and purchase intentions First, the experimental stimuli included inconsistent uses of singular and plural words when introducing the product. Specifically, the advertisement stimulus with the popularity appeal used singular terms in the advertising copy Perfecting your look with the best selling hat and slogan Leighton, No. 1 Hat Brand However, the other stimulu s without popularity appeal used plural terms Perfecting your look with Leighton hats and Leighton Hats Thus, subjects exposed to the popularity appeal with singular terms might have formed their brand attitude by evaluating the exact product in the advertisement stimulus whereas subjects not exposed to popularity appeal might have evaluate d the advertised brand with plural terms as a line of many different hat products. Therefore, it is possible that a product image with the popularity appeal more strongly affected subjects evaluation in a positive manner than the other case without the popularity appeal ; these positive evaluations of the product image might have, in turn, attenuate d the effects of popularity appeal.

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101 The second possible expla nation also involved the characteristic of experimental stimuli. In the advertisement of value expressive product, the experimental stimuli presented a graphical image featured with particular styles of hat products and models. Therefore, subjects might ut ilize the image of products and models as other cues in forming brand attitudes rather than the popularity cue. In the results, regardless of popularity appeal, the subjects might have perceived the advertised brand as a unique one based on the unique desi gn of the advertised hat and unique styles of models featured in the advertisement. Thus the popularity appeal might not affect subjects brand attitudes. In other words, the diagnosticity of the popularity cue in the advertisement for the value expressiv e product might be able to be decreased by co presenting with other stronger cues such as product image and model in the advertisement. This account is consistent with cue utilization theory which suggests possible interactions among multiple cues in thi s case, popularity appeal and other visual cues including product and model images (Purohit and Srivastava 2001). In addition, a number of studies have suggested that characteristics of models featured in advertising are a very strong factor for determin i ng conformity and seeking uniqueness (Berger and Heath 2007; Escalas and Bettman 2005; Turner 1991). However, u nfortunately, the present study did not contain data that could provide a way to test these two explanations The third possible explanation abo ut the absence of the significant popularity effect for the value expressive product was provided by the additional analyses of product involvements described in the previous chapter. In the analysis, subjects with high product involvement and high CNFU sh owed negative patterns of popularity effects

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102 as predicted in Hypothesis 2. Specifically, those subjects exposed to the popularity appeal showed more negative brand attitudes and purchase intentions than others not exposed to the popularity appeal. On the o ther hand, all other subjects in other groups showed positive patterns of the popularity effects. However, the MANOVA results indicated that the three way interactions of popularity appeal, product involvement, and CNFU were not statistically significant. This outcome may be due to the small sample size and not enough effect size. All other two way interactions were significant as described in the result s chapter, and graphical representations of the results support the above mentioned patterns. In sum, th ese findings suggest that the absence of popularity effects for the value expressive product was caused by the popularity effects being attenuated by averaging the opposite patterns of responses based on product involvement and CNFU. Hypothesis 3 Hypothes e s 3a and 3b predicted the interaction effect of the popularity appeal by CNFU for multiple function product s which in this study was a messenger bag This study hypothesized that, for high CNFU group members who might be oriented toward the value express ive function, the popularity appeal would negatively affect their responses to the advertised brand. On the other hand, the effect of the popularity appeal in the low CNFU group could be positive because group members might focus more on the utilitarian fu nction in forming their brand attitude. The results confirmed Hypothesis 3a and 3b. As expected, there was significant interaction of popularity appeal and CNFU on brand attitude and purchase intention with positive effects of popularity appeal s for the l ow CNFU group and negative effects for the high CNFU group. However, the interaction effect was not significant for quality perception. In fact,

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103 the popularity appeal did not affect quality perception for the multiple function product. Thus, Hypothes e s 3a and 3b were partially supported showing significant interaction in brand attitude and purchase intention but not in quality perception. The null effect of brand popularity on quality perception of the multiple function product (the messenger bag ) was not eworthy because, for utilitarian product s and even for value expressive products, the popularity appeal had significant and positive main effects on quality perception. This suggests that, for the messenger bag, respondents did not use information regardin g brand popularity as a quality cue. Rather, the significant interaction of the popularity appeal by CNFU indicate d that respondents used the popularity appeal as social information that influenced their responses based on differ ing individual tendenc ies t oward CNFU. In other words, this result showed that, for particular types of product s the popularity appeal can serve as a social cue rather than a quality cue. In addition, the differential effects of the popularity appeal being dependent on CNFU was not found in either respondents who were exposed to the popularity appeal or those who were not exposed to the popularity appeal. Specifically, when there was a popularity appeal, brand attitude and purchase intention of high and low CNFU groups did not diffe r significantly However, when there was no popularity appeal, the high CNFU group showed more positive brand attitude and purchase intention than the low CNFU group. This result suggest ed that CNFU directly affects consumers responses to certain types of advertisements. In this study, the advertising stimuli for the messenger bag can be interpreted as an image driven advertisement rather than an advertisement with functional claims because it only featured photographic images without descriptions

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104 of brand quality or functional information about the advertised brand. Past studies have shown that consumers with particular characteristics, for example high in self monitoring (Snyder and DeBono 1985), prefer image driven advertising over advertising with qual ity claims. Therefore, if CNFU is another factor that determines consumers preferences for particular types of advertising appeal s respondents with high CNFU might prefer image driven advertising for the messenger bag more than respondents with low CNFU Hypothesis 4 In addition to the effects of popularity appeal on quality perception, brand attitude, and purchase intention, this study examined the effect of popularity appeal in advertising on brand awareness. Under Hypothesis 4, which predicted enhanc ed awareness of the brand advertised with popularity appeals data on recognition of advertising slogan and layout were analyzed. The result showed higher recognition scores of respondents not exposed to popularity appeal s than those exposed t o popularity appeal s This result occurred because respondents who assessed value expressive products showed significantly lower recognition when they were exposed to popularity appeal s In cases of utilitarian and multiple function product s recognition s cores depending on exposure to popularity appeal s did not differ significantly. This result contradicts Hypothesis 4. The finding suggest s that popularity appeal s do not significantly affect awareness of the advertised brands for either high or low CNFU co nsumers. The only exceptions are case s of value expressive products, indicating the possibility that popularity appeals in an advertisement for value expressive products can decrease consumers attention to other advertising elements including ad slogan a nd visual layout.

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105 Additional Findings In addition to the hypothes i s tests, several noteworthy findings emerged in additional analyses of product involvement as another moderating variable for the popularity effects. Overall, distinguishable patterns of pr ocessing popularity appeals occurred between high and low involvement subjects. S pecific ally when subjects had low product involvement, the popularity appeal positively affected them in most cases ; a n exception was subjects with high CNFU who evaluated the multiple function product. On the other hand, when subjects had high product involvement, their responses differe d according to the CNFU. Specifically, for subjects with high CNFU, the popularity appeal negatively affected them whereas, for subjects wi th low CNFU, the effects of popularity appeal were positive with one exception : attitudes toward the multiple function product. This finding suggests that popularity appeals may have different effects in processing brand information according to consumers product involvement and CNFU. For consumers with low involvement, popularity appeal seems to serve as a quality cue and positively affect brand perceptions and attitudes regardless of product types and the individual difference factor (i.e., CNFU ) On t he other hand, if consumers have high involvement, the popularity appeals have different effects depending on the CNFU. For people with high CNFU, popularity appeals seem to serve as a negative social cue signaling the loss of uniqueness. However, if peop le have low CNFU, popularity appeals seem to serve as a positive cue that may indicate superior quality or wide social acceptance. Implications The effects of brand popularity has been an important topic in marketing and consumer research as brand popula rity significantly affects consumer behavior,

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106 particularly in terms of brand quality, brand attitude, purchase intention, and brand choice. Early studies in psychology, marketing and advertising ha ve examined how people conform to others attitudes and behaviors in varied contexts including object recognition (Asch 1951), product perception (Venkatesan 1966) and brand choice (Burnkrant and Cousineau 1975). On the other hand, some psychology and consumer researchers have focused on how people diverge fr om others brand choices seek ing uniqueness and distinctiveness in their self identity. Recent studies ( Chan, Berger and Van Boven 2012 ) have combined these two opposing perspectives and revealed that people simultaneously pursue similarity and distinctiv eness motives on different dimensions of a single choice Other streams of academic endeavors have focused on identifying moderating variables that affect to the direction of popularity effects including individual difference in CNFU ( Tian et al. 2001 ) and p roduct characteristics (Bearden and Etzel 1982 ; Berger and Heath 2007 ) Even with a growing body of academic evidence about the effects of brand popularity based on psychology and marketing studies advertising researchers have neglected to test the effe cts of the advertising claims of brand popularity, which are frequently used in advertising practice, or the moderating roles of differences between advertised products and individual characteristics. Also, although several studies demonstrate d that person ality differences and product characteristics affect ed to conformity and uniqueness seeking there have not been many studies that combine d these two factors to test their interaction effects. As a result, scant empirical knowledge exists regarding how adv ertising messages about brand popularity affect consumers perceptions of the quality of the advertised brands, their brand attitudes and purchase

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1 07 intentions depending on the differences in product type and individual characteristics. Therefore, the prima ry goal of this research was to fill this gap in theoretical knowledge regarding the effects of brand popularity in advertising research through the performance of an empirical test in an advertising context. Specifically, by applying the concept of popula rity appeal in advertising this study empirically investigated the role of popularity appeal, attitude function and CNFU in the formation of consumers perceptions and attitudes. The r esults of this study revealed the significance of the popularity appea l in advertising with respect to consumers perception s and attitude s toward the advertised brands. Moreover, the study showed that the effects of popularity appeals can vary depending on attitude functions associated with particular types of product s and individual differences in CNFU. These results have significant implications for advertising research and practice. Theoretical Implications This study extends previous works in theorizing cue utilization in attitude formation together with consumers confo rmity behaviors and uniqueness seeking by testing varied effects of brand popularity on consumer behaviors particularly in advertising contexts. Further, the present study is one of initial attempts to combine two important moderators, product and consume r characteristics, into investigation of consumers conformity and uniqueness seeking. Therefore, e mpirical findings in this study contribute to the body of academic knowledge in several areas including cue utilization, attitude function, and social influe nce research First, this study adds a very important context brand popularity to the literature on cue utilization theory that investigates how consumers use extrinsic factors unrelated to true product qualities to judge products and form brand attitudes especially when

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108 they are imperfectly informed about product qualities. Prior studies of cue utilization have dealt with varied kinds of extrinsic cues including price, brand reputation, store (retailer) image, and warranty. However, few studies examined the role of brand popularity as an extrinsic cue, even though numbers of psychology and marketing studies have suggested that consumers rely heavily on others brand attitudes and choices in terms of their brand perceptions and choices. By showing the sign ificant effects of popularity appeal on consumers quality perceptions, attitudes and purchase intentions for the advertised brands, this study demonstrate d that consumers utilize information about brand popularity delivered through advertising as a cue f or judging brand qualities and for forming brand attitudes. Furthermore, it was found that the strength and direction of the effects of popularity cue s may var y depending on product and individual characteristics. These findings suggest that the diagnostic ity of a particular extrinsic cue and consumers interpretation of the meaning of a cue can differ across situations and individuals, even under circumstance s in which consumers are not familiar with the products. The differences in the use of a particular cue were also found with another extrinsic cue, product price, which contributes positively to quality perceptions but affects negatively the brands prestige (Dodds et al. 1991). Second, in investigating the varied effects of popularity appeals, this stu dy applied the perspective of attitude function which emphasizes the differen ces in psychological motives in forming attitudes toward particular issues, groups of people, and products. Specifically, this study selected and examined three different types o f products associated with different attitude functions utilitarian, value expressive, and multiple functions in order to test different directions of popularity effects. As in theories of

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109 attitude function (Johar and Sirgy 1991; Shavitt 1990), it was rev ealed that consumers based their attitudes regarding each product on different functions. A pretest showed that consumers formed their attitudes toward blender products based on utilitarian functions, and, in cases of hat products, they focused more on val ue expressive functions. Within the case of messenger bags categorized as a multiple function al product in this study consumers formed their attitudes based both on utilitarian and value expressive functions of attitude. Prior studies (Shavitt et al. 199 2) showed that advertisements were more effective when their messages were congruent with the attitude function associated with advertised products. For example, image driven advertising was more effective for value expressive products than for utilitarian products. Extending the previous findings, this study demonstrated that the effectiveness of an advertising message can differ depending on attitude functions associated with the advertised products. Specifically, when an advertised product was mostly lad en with utilitarian function of attitude, the effects of popularity appeals on brand attitudes were significant. On the other hand, the same popularity message did not affect consumers attitudes when their perception toward the advertised product was base d on value expressive function. Furthermore, when consumers based their attitude s on multiple attitude functions, the effects of popularity appeal were moderated by individual characteristics. These results imply that the meanings of a certain message in a dvertising are interpreted differently, even with opposite valences, depending on the types of the individual consumers attitude functions related to the advertised products. Third, this study tested conformity and uniqueness theories focusing specifical ly on how CNFU affects consumers responses toward popularity appeal in advertising.

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110 Early research about the need for uniqueness (NFU) both in psychology (Snyder and Fromkin 1977) and consumer research (Tian et al. 2001) con ceptualize d NFU as a trait of i ndividuals that is consistent across situational differences. However, a series of empirical findings in recent years (Berger and Heath 2007; 2008) show ed that consumers seek uniqueness more often while choosing value expressive product s than utilitarian p roducts. That goal in seeking uniqueness is to express their distinctive identities, and value expressive product s (e.g. clothes) are more relevant to this self expression than other utilitarian products (e.g. air conditioner s ). Thi s stream of research considers NFU as a state variable that can be activated or deactivated depending on situational factors including the product domain. The results of the current study did not provide a clear answer to the question regarding whether NFU is a trait or a state factor. This study found that people responded differently to popularity appeals depending on their CNFU. For subjects with higher CNFU, popularity appeals were not effective in terms of utilitarian products, and their effects were n egative for multi function al products. Otherwise, for others with lower CNFU, the effects of the same popularity appeals on brand attitudes were positive for utilitarian and multi function product s This result partially confirmed the categorization of NFU as a trait factor. However, in the domain of a value expressive product popularity appeal had no significant effect on brand attitudes of both high and low CNFU groups. This finding is consistent with the perspective of NFU as a state. Fourth this stu dy contribute d significantly to the research on advertising appeals by providing empirical findings about a commonly used but underexplored advertising appeal called a popularity appeal in the current study. C onsiderable academic

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111 endeavors have investigat e d the variety of effects of particular types of advertising appeals including humor (Sternthal and Craig 1973), fear (Rogers 1975), scarcity (Lynn 1991), and sexual appeals (Alexander and Judd 1979). However, few academic studies have been conducted to e xamine the effects of popularity appeal. This study provides initial evidence that the effects of popularity appeal can be stronger for utilitarian product s than for value expressive product s Furthermore, when products have utilitarian and value expressiv e characteristics simultaneously, the effect of popularity appeal can be moderated significantly in individuals differential tendency to seek uniqueness. The f indings of this study contradict ed early arguments (Banerjee 1992; Caminal and Vives 1996; Dean 1999) that limit ed the view of popularity as a positive driver of conformity behavior. It was obvious that the effects of popularity appeal were not identical across different product and individual characteristics. S imilar results had been found in studie s on scarcity appeals that demonstrated the moderating effects of types of advertised products and individual differences in NFU (Lynn 1991). Finally the present study found the potential effects of product involvement in processing popularity appeals in advertising. This finding opens opportunities to extend the theoretical understanding of consumers conformity behavior and uniqueness seeking in a more structured manner. Although there have been well established knowledge about product involvement as a d eterminant of consumers information processing, previous studies, which have focused primarily on differential effects of popularity based on product characteristics (utilitarian vs. value expressive) or individual difference factors, have neglected to in vestigate the effect of product involvement. The

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112 present study suggests that the effect of product involvement on conformity and uniqueness seeking can precede the effect of product and individual characteristics. Managerial Implications In addition to th eoretical implications, this study provides several managerial implications for marketers and advertising practitioners. First, this study revealed that the effectiveness of popularity appeal varied depending on product types and consumers need for unique ness. This result suggests the need for marketers to examine the characteristics of the advertised product and target consumers prior to applying popularity appeals in advertising campaign s S pecific ally marketers should be familiar with attitude function s related to the advertised products. If their targets form an attitude toward the product based on utilitarian functions, using popularity appeals can help to enhance quality perceptions of advertised brands, positive brand attitudes and purchase intenti ons, especially for the consumers with low CNFU. However, if the advertised products are associated with the value expressive function of attitude, uses of popularity appeal would be un helpful in building positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions. F or products associated with both utilitarian and value expressive functions of attitude, marketers need to pay close attention to the characteristics of their target audience. That is because popularity appeal for multiple function products will be benefic ial to the brand only when targets are low in their CNFU. T he results of this study indicate d that i f the target audiences are consumers with high CNFU, the use of popularity appeal for multiple function products can affect negatively brand attitudes and purchase intentions. In other words, if consumers attitude functions are solely or considerably based on value expressive

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113 functions, the effects of popularity appeal of the advertised brand can be insignificant or negative. In fact, this study show ed tha t CNFU is a significant factor that determines the effectiveness of popularity appeal. Thus, if marketers are considering popularity appeal as an option for their message strategies, consumer research for better understanding about the targets CNFU is an essential step in selecting the message strategy. If the target audiences CNFU is low, the application of popularity appeal can be an appropriate strategy to enhance quality perception, brand attitude and purchase intention, especially for utilitarian an d multiple function product s However, if the research reveals that the targets CNFU is high, popularity appeal may be not appropriate o r may even be a risky option for building positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions. This implication can be ver y useful for companies that use customized advertisements for multiple demographic or geographic segments. Th is is because prior studies have indicate d that consumers tendencies of distinctiveness seeking and conformity behaviors can var y depending on dem ographic and geographic factors. For example, a survey study of social influence ( Park and Lessig 1977) showed that undergraduate students were influenced more by their reference groups than by housewives, because undergraduate students are relatively lack ing in product experience and are more sensitiv e to peer evaluation. In a cross cultural study (Yamaguchi, Kuhlman and Sugimori 1995), individual pursuits for distinctiveness were more salient in individualist cultures than collectivist cultures. As indica ted in the example, marketers can compare CNFU across different demographic or geographic

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114 segments and customize their message by utilizing popularity appeal only for target segments with low CNFU. In addition to product types and CNFU product involvement s were revealed as an important factor that could potentially affect the effectiveness of popularity appeals. Based on this additional finding, if target ed consumers have low levels of involvement for the advertised products, the use of popularity appeals can be effective in form ing positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions. However, if targets have high involvement, marketers should be cautious about using popularity appeals in their brand communications because it can bring negative effects especi ally when their targets have high CNFU. Limitations and Suggestions for Future Research As with all works of academic research, this study has several limitations. At the same time, the limitations and findings in this study suggest several directions fo r future research. In particular this study utilized an experimental method, which created artificial manipulations, so limitations exist in terms of the external validity and generalizability of findings in the current study. First, as mentioned in the summary of results in this chapter, the inconsistent uses of singular and plural wording when introducing the advertising products as well as the use of particular types of product and model images might have affect ed the results of the present study. Ther efore, collecting additional data with revised stimuli is required to rule out their po tential effects which might cause misinterpretations of the findings in the present study. The revised stimuli may consistently use singular words across experimental c onditions of popularity appeal and product types. In terms of visual graphics, future research should use images with more neutral valence than those in

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115 the present study. The use of advertisement stimuli, which only contained product image s, without any h uman model s, can be recommended to avoid the undesired influence of a model image in subjects perception and responses. Second this study used fictitious brands as the experimental stimuli to avoid potential effects of prior knowledge about existing bra nds during the assess ment of subjects attitudes toward the brand. Therefore, the findings might not be directly applicable to all existing brands with different characteristics and under different circumstances Particularly, there is a possibility that t he effects of popularity appeal in advertising interact with the particular characteristics of existing brands. A recent study of attitude function (LeBoeuf and Simmons 2010) found that consumers attitude functions could var y not only based on the charact eristics of product categories but also based on the specific images of individual brands. This study showed that the attitudes toward Rolex, a luxury watch brand, a re mostly based on value expressive function. However, consumers use utilitarian function t o form attitudes toward Timex, an affordable watch brand. Therefore, it is presumable that popularity appeal such as Timex, The best selling watch can be an effective strategy to enhance positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions. However, an adv ertisement that claims Rolex, The best selling watch, may not be beneficial regarding the attitudes toward the brand associated with value expressive functions like Rolex. Future stud ies should test these premises with employing existing brands as resea rch stimuli. In addition, the current study tested only a single product for each type of attitude function. Therefore, to generalize the observed effects in this study, further replications with the us e of other

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116 utilitarian, value expressive, and multiple function product s from different categories are required. Third all participants of the current study were undergraduate students in the United States. As argued in a previous work of l i terature (Calder, Phillips and Tybout 1981), an examination of ho mogeneous respondents including a student sample has merits especially in minimizing the potential effects of undetected covariations. However, the use of a specific demographical group causes significant limitation s to application of the research findings to the general population or other particular demographics (Campbell and Stanley 1963). Moreover, conformity behaviors and uniqueness seeking, which were the primary interests of this study, tend to be varied depending on age and culture ( Park and Lessig 1977; Yamaguchi et al. 1995). For this reason, fu rther investigation regarding popularity appeal can be expanded to other demographic and cultural groups to generalize findings in the current study. Fourth this study investigated the effect of a single cu e brand popularity on attitude formation. However, the advertisements executed in the real world tend to encompass multiple numbers of cues simultaneously. For example, consumers can use brand name, price, and warranty information in a single advertisement as cues to evaluate brands and to form brand attitudes. A previous study (Purohit and Srivastava 2001) showed that the effects of each individual cue, which in the study were manufacturer reputation, retailer reputation, and product warranty, were moderat ed by presentations of other cues. The authors argued that the predictive value (or diagnosticity) of a particular cue can be increased or decreased through the processing of other cues. Therefore, the effects of the popularity cue in actual advertising pr actice

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117 can differ significantly with the findings in this study if the advertising encompasses other elements in which consumers can be used as cues in forming their brand attitude. For example, demographic characteristics of advertising endorsers can be a nother cue for audiences in forming brand attitudes. In studies of social influence, there is well established knowledge about differences between out group and in group social influence. Generally, it has been said that people are influenced more strongly and positively by in group members than out group members (Escalas and Bettman 2005; Turner 1991). Therefore, popularity appeals with in group endorsers can be more effective than with out group endorsers regardless of product type. It is also possible th at popularity appeals can be negative if the endorser of the advertised brand is associated with a negative image or identity that the target audiences try to avoid. For example, No. 1 T Shirt B rand for Teens would not be effective for target audienc es in their 20s who do not want to be associated with teenagers. For this reason, possible interaction of popularity cue by type of advertising endorsers seems to be a very promising area of future research. Fifth this study focused on the moderating ro les of attitude function related to particular product types and CNFU in the effects of popularity appeals and ignored other variables that also can moderate the effects of popularity appeals. For example, message credibility can be an important factor in understanding the effect of popularity appeal because there are possibilities that consumers might consider popularity appeals including the use of terms like best most and No.1 as another type of advertising puffery ( Preston 1975 ). Future studies can investigate which factors in advertising execution determine the credibility of popularity appeal.

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118 Lastly, the present study reveals that product involvement is a very important variable for understand ing the effects of popularity appeal. However, the involvement effects were not hypothesized in the present study, and the sample size in the data analyses were too small to investigate its effects in depth. Therefore, future studies with a larger sample size may investigate how product involvement modera te s conformity behavior and uniqueness seeking of consumers with different CNFU in various product domains. Conclusion B y providing empirical support of differential effects of popularity appeal depending on attitude functions associated with product types and individual differences in CNFU, the current research extend ed our understanding of the effects of popularity appeals in advertising on consumer behavior. Specifically, the results suggest that popularity appeals for utilitarian and value expressive pr oducts enhance quality perceptions. However, quality perceptions for the multiple function product were not affected by popularity appeal. More important ly popularity appeals increase positive brand attitudes and purchase intentions for the utilitarian pr oduct, especially for consumers with low CNFU. On the other hand, the use of popularity appeal for the value expressive product does not affect brand attitude s and purchase intentions. For the multiple function product, consumers with low CNFU were positiv ely influenced by popularity appeal, but other consumers with high CNFU showed negative attitudes and purchase intentions for the brand advertised with popularity appeal. Despite frequent uses of popularity appeal in advertising practices, a limited amount of research has dealt with this topic. To understand the effects of popularity appeal on consumer behavior more fully, the results of the current research strongly suggest more explicit consideration of the roles of

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119 attitude function associated with adver tised products and individual differences in uniqueness seeking or conformity tendency. In addition, the present study suggests the possibility that product involvement may serve as an important determinant of the effects of popularity appeal on consumer b ehavior.

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120 APPENDIX A DESCRIPTION OF MULTI ITEM MEASUREMENTS Consumers Need for Uniqueness ( Tian, Bearden and Hunter 2001) To what extent do you agree for each statement? (seven point Likert type scale) 1. I collect unusual products as a way of telling peop 2. I have sometimes purchased unusual products or brands as a way to create a more distinctive personal image 3. I often look for one of a kind products or brands so that I create a style that is all my own 4. Often when buying merchandise, an imp ortant goal is to find something that communicates my uniqueness 5. I often combine possessions in such a way that I create a personal image for 6. I often try to find a more interesting version of run of the mill products because I enjoy being original 7. I actively seek to develop my personal uniqueness by buying special products or brands 8. Having an eye for products that are interesting and unusual assists me in establishing a distinctive image 9. The products and brands that I like be st are the ones that express my individuality 10. I often think of the things I buy and do in terms of how I can use them to shape a more unusual personal image 11. products or brands that will add to my personal uniqueness 12. When dr essing, I have sometimes dared to be different in ways that others are likely to disapprove 13. comes to the products I buy and the situations in which I use them, customs and rules are made to be broken 14. I often dress unconvent ionally even 15. I rarely act in agreement with what others think are the right things to buy 16. Concern for being out of place I want to wear 17. When it comes to the products I buy and the situa tions in which I use them, I have often broken customs and rules 18. I have often violated the understood rules of my social group regarding what to buy or own 19. I have often gone against the understood rules of my social group regarding when and how certain pro ducts are properly used

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121 20. I enjoy challenging the prevailing taste of people I know by buying something accept 21. If someone hinted that I had been d ressing inappropriately for a social situation, I would continue dressing in the same mann er 22. care 23. When products or brands I like become extremely popular, I lose interest in them 24. I avoid products or brands that have already been accepted and purchased by the a verage consumer 25. When a product I own becomes popular among the general population, I begin using it less 26. I often try to avoid products or brands that I know are bought by the general population 27. As a rule, I dislike products or brands that are customarily p urchased by everyone 28. once they become popular among the general public 29. The more commonplace a product or brand is among the general population, the less interested I am in buying it 30. value for me when they are purchased regularly by everyone 31. When a style of clothing I own becomes too commonplace, I usually quit wearing it Attitude Function of a Product ( LeB oeuf and Simmons 2010) To what extent do you agree for each statement? (seven point Likert type scale) 1. I typically think of (product) in terms of whether or not they give me certain benefits ( utilitarian function ) 2. I typically think of (product) in terms of whether or not they symbolize certain things ( value expressive function ) Att itude toward the Brand (Spears and Singh 2004) Please describe your overall feelings about the brand described in the ad you just read. 1. U nappealing: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Appealing 2. B ad: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Good 3. Unpleasant: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Pleasant 4. Unfavorable: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Favorable 5. Unlikable: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Likable

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122 Purchase Intentions ( MacKenzie, Luyz and Belch 1986 ) Please describe the probability that you will purchase the brand described in the ad you ju st read when it becomes available in your area. 1. Unlikely : 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 : Likely 2. Improbable : 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Probable 3. Impossible : 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Possible Perceived Quality (Boulding and Kirmani 1993) 1. Compared to other bra nds, what is the likely quality of the advertised brand? Much lower than average quality: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 : Much higher than average quality 2. Please rate the advertised brand on the following dimensions Low quality: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 : H igh quality Perceived Popularity (Mishra, Umesh and Stem 1993) Rate your perception of the popularity of (name of brand) 1. Not an industry leader: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 : I ndustry leader 2. Not at all popular: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 : V ery popular 3. Not widely accepted: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 : W idely accepted 4. Few like it: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 : M any like it Prior Product Knowledge (Moore and Lehmann 1980; Rao and Monroe 1988) Regarding (product), would you consider yourself: 1. Completely unfamiliar : 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Extremely familiar I know a lot about (product) 2. D i sagree: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :Agree Product Involvement ( Mittal 1995 ) To me (object to be judged) is: 1. unimportant: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :important 2. of concern to me: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :of no concern* 3. means nothing to me: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :means a lot to me 4. doesn t matters: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :matter to me 5. insignificant: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 :significant indicates item is reverse scored

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123 APPEN DIX B EXPERIMENTAL STIMULI A dvertisements of the utilitarian product with popularity appeal

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124 Advertisements of the utilitarian product without popularity appeal

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125 A dvertisements of the value expressive product with popularity appeal

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126 Adver tisements of the value expressive product without popularity appeal

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127 Advertisements of the multiple function product with popularity appeal

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128 Advertisements of the multiple function product with popularity appeal

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139 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Dr. Dae Emerson College in 2001. In t he fall of 2008, he joined the doctoral program at the University of Florida. H e received his Ph.D. from the University of Florida in the fall of 201 2 During his doctoral years, Dr Kim examined various topics in consumer psychology, brand attitude, and interactive advertising. His studies were presented at national conferences and published in academic journals. His current research investigates how social cues related to brand consumption (e.g., user imagery, customer rating, and brand popularity) affect consumer perceptions and attitudes toward a brand. While pursuing his deg ree, Dr Kim worked as a graduate assistant for the College of Journalism and Communications, and taught several undergraduate advertising courses. He received an Outstanding Graduate Student Teacher award in 2012. Prior to joining the doctoral program, Dr Kim worked as a brand consultant for five years at an advertising agency in South Korea. His clients included Burger King, LG Electronics, Guess, and several other local companies. Previously, he taught marketing, consumer behavior, and advertising cours es as an adjunct instructor at several universities in South Korea. Currently, he is a lecturer in marketing at the Luter School of Business at Christopher Newport University.