When people purchase luxury items like expensive watches and high-end automobiles, they often consider themselves members of a select group of consumers. According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, when outsiders show an interest in a luxury brand, they help improve its overall value.
"Just as tourists boost the pride of citizens toward their home country and reinforce the attractiveness and desirability of the place they visit, brand tourists (as fans of the brand) inspire feelings of membership pride and enhance brand image," write authors Silvia Bellezza and Anat Keinan (both Harvard University).
The authors use the terms 'brand immigrant' and 'brand tourist' to differentiate between consumers who either claim group membership (brand immigrants) or do not claim group membership (brand tourists).
They explain that while brand immigrants pose a threat to the image and distinctiveness of selective brands, brand tourists can actually reinforce the brand's prestige.
Over six lab and field studies, the authors studied how consumers of selective brands react to brand immigrants and brand tourists as well as brands that have expanded their product lines to offer less expensive and less exclusive products.
In one study, participants were asked to complete a survey that described a customer who received a free collector's shopping bag just for visiting a Prada or Marc Jacobs boutique. The customer was given the role of a neutral consumer, a brand tourist, or a brand immigrant.
Survey results indicated a more positive response for customers receiving the bag when they felt the consumer was not trying to falsely represent that they were using the bag to convey they had purchased something from the boutique.
Results reveal that the "brand tourism effect" also has positive implications for companies managing or monitoring brand communities that are perceived as selective and require effort to gain membership.
"Our research stresses the importance of embracing and cultivating brand tourism and demonstrates that brand tourists can serve as a source of pride and value for the brand," the authors conclude.
Silvia Bellezza and Anat Keinan. "Brand Tourists: How Non-Core Users Enhance the Brand Image by Eliciting Pride." Journal of Consumer Research: August 2014. For more information, contact Silvia Bellezza or visit http://ejcr.org/.
Mary-Ann Twist | Eurek Alert!
Study calculates the speed of ice formation
04.08.2015 | Princeton University
Research investigates whether solar events could trigger birth defects on Earth
21.07.2015 | University of Kansas
Continuing current carbon dioxide (CO2) emission trends throughout this century and beyond would leave a legacy of heat and acidity in the deep ocean. These...
Glacier decline in the first decade of the 21st century has reached a historical record, since the onset of direct observations. Glacier melt is a global phenomenon and will continue even without further climate change. This is shown in the latest study by the World Glacier Monitoring Service under the lead of the University of Zurich, Switzerland.
The World Glacier Monitoring Service, domiciled at the University of Zurich, has compiled worldwide data on glacier changes for more than 120 years. Together...
Using ultracold atoms trapped in light crystals, scientists from the MPQ, LMU, and the Weizmann Institute observe a novel state of matter that never thermalizes.
What happens if one mixes cold and hot water? After some initial dynamics, one is left with lukewarm water—the system has thermalized to a new thermal...
Physicists from Regensburg and Marburg, Germany have succeeded in taking a slow-motion movie of speeding electrons in a solid driven by a strong light wave. In the process, they have unraveled a novel quantum phenomenon, which will be reported in the forthcoming edition of Nature.
The advent of ever faster electronics featuring clock rates up to the multiple-gigahertz range has revolutionized our day-to-day life. Researchers and...
Researchers have developed an ultrafast light-emitting device that can flip on and off 90 billion times a second and could form the basis of optical computing.
04.08.2015 | Event News
23.07.2015 | Event News
10.07.2015 | Event News
04.08.2015 | Information Technology
04.08.2015 | Power and Electrical Engineering
04.08.2015 | Materials Sciences