Additivity Versus Attenuation

Journal of Consumer Psychology, Vol. 9, No. 2, pp. 67-82, 2000

Posted: 6 Aug 2011

See all articles by Jennifer Aaker

Jennifer Aaker

Stanford University - Graduate School of Business

Jaideep Sengupta

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - Department of Marketing

Date Written: 2000

Abstract

Past research on dual process models of persuasion has documented that, when faced with information incongruity, individuals tend to form product evaluations by attenuating the less diagnostic information, relying solely on the more diagnostic information. The current research suggests that this way of resolving incongruity may be culture specific. Consistent with recent research in cultural psychology, this study shows that individuals in a North American culture tend to follow the attenuation strategy, whereas individuals in an East Asian culture tend to follow an additive strategy in which both pieces of information are combined to jointly influence evaluations (Experiment 1). Experiments 2 and 3 provide further support for the proposed psychological mechanism underlying these findings and also identify boundary conditions for these findings. Implications for understanding choice mind-sets, the moderating role of justification on evaluations, and cultural limitations in incongruity resolution are discussed

Keywords: additivity, attenuation, averaging, product evaluations, culture

JEL Classification: M30, M31

Suggested Citation

Aaker, Jennifer Lynn and Sengupta, Jaideep, Additivity Versus Attenuation (2000). Journal of Consumer Psychology, Vol. 9, No. 2, pp. 67-82, 2000. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1905714

Jennifer Lynn Aaker (Contact Author)

Stanford University - Graduate School of Business ( email )

655 Knight Way
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States

Jaideep Sengupta

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - Department of Marketing ( email )

Clear Water Bay, Kowloon

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