Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Illusion of control: Why sports fans prefer 'lucky' products

Date:
May 14, 2013
Source:
Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.
Summary:
Consumers engage in superstitious behavior when they want to achieve something but don’t have the power to make it happen, according to a new study.

Consumers engage in superstitious behavior when they want to achieve something but don't have the power to make it happen, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

Related Articles


"Preference for lucky products (those associated with positive outcomes) increases when a strong desire for control is combined with lower perceived ability to exert control. Consumers who make superstitious choices believe they will be effective in helping them achieve the desired outcome," write authors Eric J. Hamerman (Tulane University) and Gita V. Johar (Columbia University).

Sports fans are well known for their superstitious behavior. A current Bud Light commercial with the tag line of "it's only weird if it doesn't work" shows the odd ways in which NFL fans root for their teams. Robert De Niro's character in Silver Linings Playbook engages in deeply superstitious behavior that will supposedly help the Philadelphia Eagles win.

In one study, right-handed consumers played rock-paper-scissors. Those who won more often using their left (vs. right) hand preferred to continue playing with their left hand. This was more likely to occur among consumers with a stronger desire for control, and those who preferred to play left-handed after associating this hand with victory tended to believe they were more likely to win in the future.

Consumers can become conditioned to associate certain products with success or failure. For example, a sports fan who was drinking a Dr. Pepper while watching his favorite team win a game might later drink Dr. Pepper -- even if he would actually prefer a Coke -- while watching future games in the hope that he's giving his team an extra edge.

"Conditioned superstitions are formed when consumers associate products with success or failure. Depending on how much they wish to control their environment -- and their perception of whether they can do so -- consumers who make these associations may be more likely to act on them, thereby creating an illusion of control over future outcomes," the authors conclude.


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. Eric J. Hamerman and Gita V. Johar. Conditioned Superstition: Desire for Control and Consumer Brand Preferences. Journal of Consumer Research, October 2013

Cite This Page:

Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.. "Illusion of control: Why sports fans prefer 'lucky' products." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 May 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130514112741.htm>.
Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.. (2013, May 14). Illusion of control: Why sports fans prefer 'lucky' products. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130514112741.htm
Journal of Consumer Research, Inc.. "Illusion of control: Why sports fans prefer 'lucky' products." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130514112741.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

AP (Oct. 28, 2014) Moms and Dads get a more hands-on approach to parenting with tech-centric products for raising their little ones. (Oct. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Newsy (Oct. 27, 2014) Researchers have come up with another reason why dark chocolate is good for your health. A substance in the treat can reportedly help with memory. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

AFP (Oct. 27, 2014) Coding has become compulsory for children as young as five in schools across the UK. Making it the first major world economy to overhaul its IT teaching and put programming at its core. Duration: 02:19 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) 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:

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