Does Measuring Intent Change Behavior?

Journal of Consumer Research, Vol. 20, pp. 46-61, 1993

Posted: 29 Jun 2009

See all articles by Vicki Morwitz

Vicki Morwitz

New York University (NYU) - Department of Marketing

Eric J. Johnson

Columbia Business School - Marketing

David Schmittlein

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: 1993

Abstract

Past research has established that, while self-reports of purchase intentions can predict behavior, various factors affect the strength of the intentions-behavior link. This article explores one such factor: the impact of merely measuring intent. Our specific question concerns the impact of measuring intent on subsequent purchase behavior. Prior research suggests a mere-measurement hypothesis: that merely measuring intent will increase subsequent purchase behavior. We also suggest a polarization hypothesis: that repeated intent questions will have a polarizing effect on behavior. The results reveal that the effect of merely asking intent to buy once is an increase in the subsequent purchase rate. The effect of repeatedly asking intent for those with low levels of intent is a decreased propensity to buy with repeated measurements. These two effects are reduced given prior experience with the product. The implications of these findings and opportunities for future research are discussed.

Suggested Citation

Morwitz, Vicki and Johnson, Eric J. and Schmittlein, David, Does Measuring Intent Change Behavior? (1993). Journal of Consumer Research, Vol. 20, pp. 46-61, 1993, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1424067

Vicki Morwitz (Contact Author)

New York University (NYU) - Department of Marketing ( email )

Henry Kaufman Ctr
44 W 4 St.
New York, NY
United States

Eric J. Johnson

Columbia Business School - Marketing ( email )

New York, NY 10027
United States

David Schmittlein

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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