1st Edition

Social Influence and Consumer Behavior

Edited By Daniel Howard, Amna Kirmani, Priyali Rajagopal Copyright 2013
    150 Pages
    by Psychology Press

    150 Pages
    by Psychology Press

    A good deal of consumer research is focused on social influence, since consumers make purchase decisions in the context of a social framework. This collection of innovative essays examines both the conscious and non-conscious effects of social influence on consumer behavior processes and outcomes, covering a wide variety of topics such as compliance, influence tactics, social networks, social relationships, family decision-making, and spokespersons.

    The papers are authored by experts in consumer psychology from both psychology and marketing backgrounds. Some of their key insights include:

    • The relationship between the target and the influence agent determines the effectiveness of influence tactics
    • Priming consumers with products associated with social networks, such as iPhones for friends or refrigerators with families, makes those products become more attractive
    • Negative associations of celebrity endorsers can transfer to the brand
    • Cognitive dissonance underlies the question-behavior effect
    • Family decision-making includes emotional contagion and mirroring
    • Post-decisional information search is often conducted even when the search may reveal that a bad decision was made
    • The fear-then-relief technique can lead to purchase.

    The papers in this volume offer a rich assortment of research ideas which will prove valuable in furthering theoretical development in the social influence-consumer behavior area. This book will be of interest to consumer researchers and psychologists engaged in active empirical or conceptual work. It was originally published as a special issue of the journal Social Influence.

    1. Social influence and consumer behavior Daniel J. Howard

    2. The world's (truly) oldest profession: Social influence in evolutionary perspective Jill M. Sundie, Robert B. Cialdini, Vladas Griskevicius and Douglas T. Kenrick

    3. iPhones for friends, refrigerators for family: How products prime social networks Lalin Anik and Michael I. Norton

    4. A risk of meaning transfer: Are negative associations more likely to transfer than positive associations? Margaret C. Campbell and Caleb Warren

    5. Post-decisional information search: Balancing the pains of suspecting the worst with the comforts of knowing the worst Yaniv Shani and Marcel Zeelenberg

    6. Process evidence for the question-behavior effect: Influencing socially normative behaviors Eric R. Spangenberg, David E. Sprott, David C. Knuff, Carl Obermiller and Anthony G. Greenwald

    7. Social foundations of emotions in family consumption decision making Rachel Oakley Hsiung, Julie A. Ruth and Richard P. Bagozzi

    8. Fear-then-relief-then argument: How to sell goods using the EDTR technique of social influence Dariusz Dolinski and Katarzyna Szczucka


    Daniel J. Howard is Professor of Marketing in the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University, USA.

    Amna Kirmani is Director of the PhD Program and Professor of Marketing in the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, USA.

    Priyali Rajagopal is Assistant Professor of Marketing in the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University, USA.