Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

When Consumers Search For Authenticity: In The Eye Of The Beholder?

Date:
August 24, 2009
Source:
University of Chicago Press Journals
Summary:
Is McDonald's an authentic brand? What about Marlboro? According to a new study consumers are able to find authenticity in unlikely places.

Is McDonald's an authentic brand? What about Marlboro? According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, consumers are able to find authenticity in unlikely places.

"Consumer identity goals (or their idealized images of themselves) underpin assessments of whether a brand is authentic (genuine, real, and true) or not," write authors Michael B. Beverland (RMIT University, Melbourne) and Francis J. Farrelly (Monash University).

The researchers identified three primary identity goals: a desire for control, connection, or virtue. "These goals reflect three respective societal norms: the need to be practical, to participate in community, and to be moral," the authors explain. "When seeking to achieve these different goals, consumers choose different brands. When consumers desire to be in control, they may view McDonalds as an inauthentic brand partner because fast food leads to increases in weight. Alternately, McDonald's may be viewed as a genuine partner when the same consumer is seeking to connect with others."

Consumers tend to project or infer certain motives onto brands or reduce brand claims to a few basic features, the authors found. For example, several consumers viewed driving the original VW Beetle as a highly virtuous act, because the original motive behind producing the car was to provide cheap transport for everyone—despite the fact that it was the Nazi Government that originally commissioned the car.

The authors say they were intrigued by how consumers were able to judge seemingly mundane objects or mass-market brands as authentic. "Consumers found authenticity in The Simpsons, McDonald's, cigarette manufacturers, and Nike," the authors write. "Another surprise was the way committed environmentalists found authenticity in work-related objects such as SUVs."

"Authenticity is not necessarily an objective feature of an object, or conferred to things by authorities or based on the passing of time," the authors write. "Nor is it applicable only to small or anti-establishment brands, such as Ben and Jerry's or Snapple. Instead, authenticity is generated by the consumer, often in highly creative and unexpected ways."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Chicago Press Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Beverland et al. The Quest for Authenticity in Consumption: Consumers' Purposive Choice of Authentic Cues to Shape Experienced Outcomes. Journal of Consumer Research, 2009; 090819115904097 DOI: 10.1086/615047

Cite This Page:

University of Chicago Press Journals. "When Consumers Search For Authenticity: In The Eye Of The Beholder?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 August 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090824182449.htm>.
University of Chicago Press Journals. (2009, August 24). When Consumers Search For Authenticity: In The Eye Of The Beholder?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090824182449.htm
University of Chicago Press Journals. "When Consumers Search For Authenticity: In The Eye Of The Beholder?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090824182449.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) In a ruling attorneys for both sides agreed was a first of its kind, a Georgia appeals court said parents can be held liable for what kids put online. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

Buzz60 (Oct. 17, 2014) Feeling down? Reach for the refrigerator, not the medicine cabinet! TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) shares some of the best foods to boost your mood. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

Newsy (Oct. 15, 2014) Researchers claim they’ve diagnosed the first example of the disorder in a 31-year-old U.S. Navy serviceman. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins