The Sprinter Effect: When Extremely Motivated Consumers Fail to Overcome Depletion
59 Pages Posted: 4 Nov 2008
Date Written: November 3, 2008
The current research examines the non-trivial destructive effect of consumers' motivation on performance. By conceptualizing resource-depletion as a continuous state, a low point of severe depletion from which recovery is less likely to occur is identified. We propose that extreme levels of motivation yield poor performance under depleted states, as a result of reaching the low depletion point of no recovery. We term this process which leads to the drop in performance as the "sprinter effect". Studies 1 and 2, show the effect on brand name recognition and product pricing in lab settings. Study 3 replicates the sprinter effect in a grocery store with actual shoppers and Study 4 demonstrates how to debias the effect.
Keywords: Self-regulation, Resource depletion, involvment, self-control, sprinter effect
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