You Ought to Know: Why Consumers Think Companies Can Foresee Bad (but Not Good) Side Effects
Psychology & Marketing
Routine business activities often lead to unintended side effects. Prior research suggests that consumers ascribe greater corporate foreknowledge when side effects are harmful (vs. helpful) but offers a controversial explanation and insufficient exploration of its consequences. The current research fills these gaps, offering a heuristic-based explanation steeped in consumer behavior, while demonstrating the importance of this asymmetry to consumer response. First, a Pilot Study confirms the theoretical processes underlying our explanation. Study 1 tests the role of this foreknowledge asymmetry in predicting implicit bias toward the company. Studies 2 and 3 provide moderation evidence for our heuristic-based explanation and connect the phenomenon to motive inferences and blame judgments, respectively. In sum, this work provides a novel explanation for a common marketplace phenomenon while establishing its effects on several important consumer response variables.
Copyright © 2022 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved
Locate the Document
Reich, B. J., & Laurent, S. M. (2022). You ought to know: Why consumers think companies can foresee bad (but not good) side effects. Psychology & Marketing.