Have You Seen the News Today? The Effect of Death-Related Media Contexts on Brand Preferences

Liu, Jia (Elke); Smeesters, Dirk
April 2010
Journal of Marketing Research (JMR);Apr2010, Vol. 47 Issue 2, p251
Academic Journal
This research examines how death-related media contexts affect consumers' preferences for domestic and foreign brands. Four lab and field studies demonstrate that death-related media contexts affect subsequent brand evaluations in distinct ways, which have not yet been documented in the extant literature on media context. First, death-related media contexts shift consumers' preferences in favor of domestic brands by enhancing consumers' patriotism. Second, the death-related media context effect appears only with a temporal delay between the media context and the brand evaluation. Even after a 24-hour delay, the effect still takes place as long as consumers have not been given an opportunity to attenuate death-induced anxiety. Finally, the authors show that foreign brands can counter the negative effects of a death-related media context by making a prodomestic advertising claim.


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