Date of Award

Summer 2015

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Program/Concentration

Business Administration-Marketing

Committee Director

Kiran Karande

Committee Member

Yuping Liu-Thompkins

Committee Member

Leona Tam

Committee Member

Lance Frazier

Abstract

This dissertation investigates the effect of co-branding efforts on consumers' responses when a sensory product is co-branded with the scent of another sensory product (sensory co-branded product). It aims to fill the gap in the literature by studying how olfactory attributes of co-branded products influence consumers' evaluations and experiences. Three experimental studies examine how these effects occur, and also analyze the influence of moderating factors that determine the magnitude of the effects.

Study 1 explored how branding strategies and different presentation methods of products (physical or denoted) interact to influence consumer evaluations and experiences. Findings showed that consumers evaluated sensory co-branded products more positively in the denoted method of presentation, when they reviewed the advertisement of the product. When consumers had a chance to physically evaluate and smell the product, there was no difference in the evaluation of the sensory co-branded and regular sensory products.

Study 2 investigated whether level of need for smell moderates the relationship between branding strategy and consumer evaluations. Results showed that consumer evaluations of products and sensory experiences could result in different responses depending upon interaction of need for smell and the branding strategy of the product. Consumers who had high need for smell evaluated regular sensory product more positively than sensory co-branded product. Consumer evaluations did not change between branding strategies when consumers had low need for smell.

Study 3 explored the influence of sensory attribute functionality on the relationship between branding strategy and consumer evaluations. When the sensory attribute of a product was hedonic, respondents evaluated regular sensory product more positively on product quality. However, sensory co-branded products were evaluated more positively on sensory experience and scent evaluations. When the sensory attribute of the product was utilitarian, the evaluation of the sensory co-branded products and regular sensory products did not differ.

These three different studies show that sensory co-branding strategies are effective when consumers evaluate the sensory products from advertisements or any other condition that does not provide a real smelling opportunity. Sensory co-branding strategies are also effective in the evaluation of scent and sensory experience when the sensory attribute of the product is hedonic. On the other hand, regular sensory branding strategies are effective on product quality evaluation when consumers are in high need for smell and when the sensory attribute of the product is hedonic. Based on the findings, managerial implications and future research directions are also discussed.

DOI

10.25777/3w6j-3806

ISBN

9781339126524

Included in

Marketing Commons

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