Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

When wanting is more important than having: Will that new car really make you happy?

Date:
January 15, 2013
Source:
Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.
Summary:
Materialistic consumers may derive more pleasure from desiring products than they do from actually owning them, and are willing to overspend and go into debt because they believe that future purchases will transform their lives, according to a new study.

Materialistic consumers may derive more pleasure from desiring products than they do from actually owning them, and are willing to overspend and go into debt because they believe that future purchases will transform their lives, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

"Thinking about acquisition provides momentary happiness boosts to materialistic people, and because they tend to think about acquisition a lot, such thoughts have the potential to provide frequent mood boosts. But the positive emotions associated with acquisition are short-lived. Although materialists still experience positive emotions after making a purchase, these emotions are less intense than before they actually acquire a product," writes author Marsha L. Richins (University of Missouri).

Materialists tend to buy more than other consumers and are more willing to go into debt because they believe that buying things will make them happier. But does acquisition actually make them happier?

In three different studies, materialists (compared to other consumers) reported significantly stronger positive emotions when thinking about an important future purchase. This was true for both expensive items like automobiles and cheaper items like household electronics, and whether they anticipated making the purchase within a few weeks or a year or so in the future.

Materialists were more likely than others to believe that an upcoming purchase would transform their lives in meaningful ways. For example, they tended to believe that an important new acquisition will improve their relationships with other people, enhance the way they feel about themselves, enable them to have more pleasure in life, and allow them to carry out life tasks more effectively. The intensity of the happiness boost a materialist experiences before a purchase is directly related to the extent to which they expect these transformations to occur.

"Materialists are more likely to overspend and have credit problems, possibly because they believe that acquisitions will increase their happiness and change their lives in meaningful ways. Learning that acquisition is less pleasurable than anticipating a purchase may help them delay purchases until they are better able to afford them," the author concludes.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Marsha L. Richins. When Wanting Is Better than Having: Materialism, Transformation Expectations, and Product-Evoked Emotions in the Purchase Process. Journal of Consumer Research, 2013; 000 DOI: 10.1086/669256

Cite This Page:

Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.. "When wanting is more important than having: Will that new car really make you happy?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 January 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130115124351.htm>.
Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.. (2013, January 15). When wanting is more important than having: Will that new car really make you happy?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130115124351.htm
Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.. "When wanting is more important than having: Will that new car really make you happy?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130115124351.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Science & Society News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Small Reactors Could Be Future of Nuclear Energy

Small Reactors Could Be Future of Nuclear Energy

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) After the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the industry fell under intense scrutiny. Now, small underground nuclear power plants are being considered as the possible future of the nuclear energy. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Heartbleed Hack Leads To Arrest

Heartbleed Hack Leads To Arrest

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A 19-year-old computer science student has been arrested in relation to a data breach of 900 social insurance numbers from Canada's revenue agency. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Yahoo's Ousted COO Gets $58M Severance Package

Yahoo's Ousted COO Gets $58M Severance Package

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) According to SEC filings, Yahoo gave ousted COO Henrique de Castro a $58 million severance package. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) Pushing the limits on style and self-expression is a rite of passage for teens and even younger kids. How far should schools go with their dress codes? The courts have sided with schools in an era when school safety is paramount. (April 16) 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