Sustainable consumption—i.e., the use of products that minimize the use of natural resources and toxic materials as well as emissions of waste and pollutants so as not to jeopardize the needs of future generations (Oslo Roundtable 1994)—has emerged in marketing scholarship as a pressing matter. Indeed, sustainability is a key determinant of future economic growth and development. Both scientific research (e.g., Nidumolu et al. 2009) and business reports (e.g., Deloitte 2011) agree that sustainability has become a crucial driver of innovation, thus serving as a key as a critical success factor for firms. Aiming to understand underlying mechanisms behind consumers’ choice of sus-tainable products, in this study we consider two different and opposite types of communication about luxury products, which we label sustainability-oriented (whereby a message communicates the positive achievements related to the purchase of sus- tainable products) and unsustainability-oriented communication (whereby the mes sage communicates the bad outputs related to the purchase of unsustainable products). Our goal is to detect when one versus the other type of communication is more effective in increasing consumers’ preference for sustainable products. We pursue this goal by exploring the role of emotions, which might play a relevant role in luxury goods consumer behavior. Indeed, emotion seem to be a very central factor since luxury is related to social distinction, self-enhancement, dreams and high emo- tional values (Bernstein 1999; Vigneron and Johnson 2004; Wiedmann et al. 2007), as well as sustainability is related to the relationship between the self and others (WCED 1985). Indeed, in social psychology self-conscious emotions concern a group of emotions that are strongly connected with the self; these emotions are acti- vated by an intentional focus on the self and have implications on the way the indi- vidual experiences and values the self. In addition, when customers are exposed to communication content, information processing occurs (Jackson 2004), and if this information is processed in a relatively automatic and intuitive way, heuristic infor- mation processing takes place (Petty and Cacioppo 2012). In this sense, communica- tion can be either classified as “thinking” or “emotional”; the first one normally contains information requiring significant cognitive processing, the second instead is designed to trigger specific emotional reactions, at least initially (Bagozzi et al. 1999; Hansen 2005). As a consequence, in assessing the effectiveness of different types of communications related to luxury goods and sustainability, emotions may represent the underlying variables explaining specific consumption behaviors.

How to Make Better Consumers in Luxury: The Role of Shame and Empathy

AMATULLI, CESARE;
2016-01-01

Abstract

Sustainable consumption—i.e., the use of products that minimize the use of natural resources and toxic materials as well as emissions of waste and pollutants so as not to jeopardize the needs of future generations (Oslo Roundtable 1994)—has emerged in marketing scholarship as a pressing matter. Indeed, sustainability is a key determinant of future economic growth and development. Both scientific research (e.g., Nidumolu et al. 2009) and business reports (e.g., Deloitte 2011) agree that sustainability has become a crucial driver of innovation, thus serving as a key as a critical success factor for firms. Aiming to understand underlying mechanisms behind consumers’ choice of sus-tainable products, in this study we consider two different and opposite types of communication about luxury products, which we label sustainability-oriented (whereby a message communicates the positive achievements related to the purchase of sus- tainable products) and unsustainability-oriented communication (whereby the mes sage communicates the bad outputs related to the purchase of unsustainable products). Our goal is to detect when one versus the other type of communication is more effective in increasing consumers’ preference for sustainable products. We pursue this goal by exploring the role of emotions, which might play a relevant role in luxury goods consumer behavior. Indeed, emotion seem to be a very central factor since luxury is related to social distinction, self-enhancement, dreams and high emo- tional values (Bernstein 1999; Vigneron and Johnson 2004; Wiedmann et al. 2007), as well as sustainability is related to the relationship between the self and others (WCED 1985). Indeed, in social psychology self-conscious emotions concern a group of emotions that are strongly connected with the self; these emotions are acti- vated by an intentional focus on the self and have implications on the way the indi- vidual experiences and values the self. In addition, when customers are exposed to communication content, information processing occurs (Jackson 2004), and if this information is processed in a relatively automatic and intuitive way, heuristic infor- mation processing takes place (Petty and Cacioppo 2012). In this sense, communica- tion can be either classified as “thinking” or “emotional”; the first one normally contains information requiring significant cognitive processing, the second instead is designed to trigger specific emotional reactions, at least initially (Bagozzi et al. 1999; Hansen 2005). As a consequence, in assessing the effectiveness of different types of communications related to luxury goods and sustainability, emotions may represent the underlying variables explaining specific consumption behaviors.
2016
978-3-319-29876-4
978-3-319-29877-1
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/175691
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