Never Mind(set) the Number: A study on numerical construal in the mind of a consumer
Abstract: Companies are constantly competing to breach out with their marketing communication to reach customers' attention. The landscape is a highly competitive one and to disrupt it various tactical strategies need to be utilized. Such strategies include various practices of new product announcements, e.g. launches occurring today vs. in a future timeframe, as well as the exploitation of insights on numerical cognition in a marketing context, e.g. pricing strategies. These strategies are affecting the level of construal in consumers' minds and are hence contributing to the evaluation of a certain product. The purpose of this study was to contribute to the relatively scarce research literature regarding the combination of product announcements and pricing options and the effect on consumers. A quantitative experimental study was conducted with 599 respondents across Sweden, randomly divided into four different groups, all primed with different stimuli. The questionnaire consisted of an information message about a new product launch with the following treatment conditions constructed; 2 (Price: Round vs. Precise) x 2 (Time Horizon: Today vs. 6 Months). Subsequently, a set of questions were asked to establish the potential main effect of the stimuli on the respondents' attitude towards the product. The results of the study support previous findings of how the level of construal in consumers' mindset contributes to a positive evaluation of a product and the corresponding brand; higher construal level, augmenting positive evaluations, indicating a spillover effect to the whole brand. However, the study did not find empirical evidence of the hypothesized effect of the combined use of new product announcements and pricing options on product attitude. Still, the findings highlighted the importance for brands to affect the construal level in the mindset of the consumers.
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