Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Consumers love underdogs

Date:
July 21, 2010
Source:
University of Chicago Press Journals
Summary:
Consumers strongly relate to brands that they perceive as underdogs, according to a new study.

Consumers strongly relate to brands that they perceive as underdogs, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

"Across contexts, cultures, and time periods, underdog narratives have inspired people. Stories about underdogs are pervasive in sports, politics, religion, literature, and film," write authors Neeru Paharia, Anat Keinan (both Harvard University), Jill Avery (Simmons School of Management), and Juliet B. Schor (Boston College).

The authors examined the ways many contemporary brand narratives highlight companies' humble beginnings and struggles against powerful adversaries. For example, Nantucket Nectars' label says the company started "with only a blender and a dream," while Google, Clif Bar, HP, and Apple emphasize that they started in garages.

"Underdog brand biographies contain two important narrative components: a disadvantaged position versus an adversary and passion and determination to beat the odds," the authors write.

The authors found that consumers identify with underdog stories because most people have felt disadvantaged at one time or another. In a series of four experiments, the researchers found that consumers identify with underdog brands and are more likely to purchase them. They also confirmed that brand biographies that contain both external disadvantage and passion and determination generate the strongest purchase interest.

According to the authors, both Singaporean and American participants preferred underdog brands, but Americans were even more drawn to the come-from-behind stories. "The American Dream, the fabled American myth, is built on the stories of underdogs who came to the United States with virtually nothing and pulled themselves up from their bootstraps to achieve success," the authors write.

The study participants were given a choice of a chocolate bar as compensation for being in the study. They chose the underdog brand 71 percent of the time.


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. Neeru Paharia, Anat Keinan, Jill Avery, and Juliet B. Schor. The Underdog Effect: The Marketing of Disadvantage and Determination through Brand Biography. ournal of Consumer Research, February 2011

Cite This Page:

University of Chicago Press Journals. "Consumers love underdogs." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 July 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100720123710.htm>.
University of Chicago Press Journals. (2010, July 21). Consumers love underdogs. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100720123710.htm
University of Chicago Press Journals. "Consumers love underdogs." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100720123710.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) According to a new study, elderly people might have trouble sleeping because of the loss of a certain group of neurons in the brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) A new study found couples who had at least 150 guests at their weddings were more likely to report being happy in their marriages. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) Nine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New Orleans. The state of Louisiana took over most of the city's public schools after the killer storm in 2005. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
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:
from the past week

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