Track 7: Interpersonal Relations & Group Processes
Eugenia Wu (University of Pittsburgh)

7A. Shared Experiences

Saturday, March 5
9:30am – 11:00am EST
Discussant: Peggy Liu (University of Pittsburgh)
MC: Ximena Garcia-Rada (Texas A&M University)
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Student Coordinator: Priscilla Peña (University of Rhode Island) (

Competitive Papers

‘The Same Thing Happened to Me’: Exploring Divergent Outcomes of Brand Experience Ubiquity
Authors: Jacqueline R. Rifkin (University of Missouri-Kansas City), Francesca Valsesia (university of washington), Keisha Cutright (Duke University)
Presenting Author: Jacqueline R. Rifkin (University of Missouri-Kansas City)
Brands often send customers small rewards, gifts, and other pleasant experiences in their customer relationship management efforts. Importantly, though, consumers do not live in a vacuum, and often share about these experiences with others, both offline and online. In a world of constant sharing, what are the implications of consumers comparing notes about their experiences? This research explores the divergent outcomes of “ubiquitous” (i.e., highly common) brand experiences. Finding out that one’s experience is ubiquitous simultaneously increases connection to the brand community and decreases connection to the brand itself. Five studies reveal these effects, boundary conditions, and managerial implications.
GOATs: How Superstars are Crucial for Bad Teams
Authors: Bryce Pyrah (University of Iowa), Chelsea Galoni (University of Iowa)
Presenting Author: Bryce Pyrah (University of Iowa)
Professional sports teams often trade or sell star players as a way to invest in the future of the team when the present team performance is poor. Building on literatures and findings on sports celebrities and basking in reflected glory processes, we question this common managerial practice. Across three studies (including an analysis of historical attendance records, a correlational fan survey, and an experimental study), we find that sports stars significantly improve fan engagement only for teams that are performing poorly. However, for teams that are performing well, star players provide no benefit to fan engagement.
How Social Functioning Ability and Crowdedness Impact Consumer Behavior
Authors: Shiyun Chen (Univeristy of Iowa), Gary Gaeth (Univeristy of Iowa), Irwin Levin (Univeristy of Iowa), Aron Levin (Northern Kentucky University)
Presenting Author: Shiyun Chen (Univeristy of Iowa)
We report four studies that investigate the impact of social functioning ability on consumer decision-making under varying levels of physical and social crowdedness. Our initial two studies suggest that people with lower social functioning ability feel less socially comfortable and dislike the environment in the extremely crowded condition compared to other people. In the third study, we separate the impact of physical crowding from the intensity of social interaction. For the fourth study a unique application of conjoint analysis demonstrated that individual differences in sensitivity to social attributes were predictive of willingness to try and pay for a restaurant.
Memories of Us: How Extraordinary Group Experiences Promote Long-Term Well-Being
Authors: Miranda Goode (Ivey Business School), Matt Thomson (Ivey Business School), Zuzanna Jurewicz (Ivey Business School)
Presenting Author: Zuzanna Jurewicz (Ivey Business School)
Consumers often use extraordinary experiences (e.g., foreign travel, attending cultural events) to counteract stress, yet stress has received little attention in the experiential consumption literature. We investigate how special memories of extraordinary experiences shared with close others impact the long-term well-being of more vs. less stressed consumers. Two online experiments and a survey of Make-A-Wish families demonstrate that cohesion—the perception of a group as stable, bonded, and enduring—mediates the relationship between special memories and well-being, and that distraction is an important characteristic of experiences that enable stressed participants to reap lasting benefits.

Flash Talks

The Crime of Wanting
Authors: Tianjiao Yu (Washington University in St. Louis), Cynthia Cryder (Washington University in St. Louis), Sydney Scott (Washington University in St. Louis)
Presenting Author: Tianjiao Yu (Washington University in St. Louis)
We examine how consumers judge each other based on their desire to purchase products. We find when consumers strongly (vs. weakly) desire a product or products, they are admired less. We call this the crime of wanting. The crime of wanting arises due to perceptions of low willpower, which feed into a person’s overall admiration for another consumer. When inferences about willpower are signaled via other ways, for example, when the consumer has a high-willpower personality or is interested in practical products, the crime of wanting is mitigated.
Buying Love: The Influence of Attachment-Anxiety on Consumer Preference for Romantic Products
Authors: Cassandra Davis (Wayne State University), Hyewook Jeong (Chungnam National University), Aimee Drolet-Rossi (University of California Los Angeles)
Presenting Author: Cassandra Davis (Wayne State University)
Despite the time, effort, and costs consumers expend for romantic love and the fact that advertisers, brand managers, and marketers utilize romantic appeals as a persuasion tactic, little empirical research has addressed romantic marketing. Drawing on attachment theory, we investigate whether anxiously attached consumers differ in their responses to romantic marketing compared to securely attached consumers. Examining actual choice, results show that anxiously attached consumers are more likely than securely attached consumers to choose products that symbolize romantic love.


Time Framing in a Simplified Life: The Impact of Temporal Landmarks on Voluntary Simplicity
Authors: Siyun Chen (Jinan University), Xinliang Wei (Temple University)
Presenting Author: Siyun Chen (Jinan University)
Voluntary simplicity (VS) refers to a minimalistic lifestyle of conscious, ecological and ethical consumption. The current research theorizes that the two forms of VS appeals are systematically associated with distinct temporal landmarks. In particular, we demonstrate that priming temporal landmarks as the start of a time period makes it more likely that consumers will engage in biospheric voluntary simplicity (BVS), whereas priming temporal landmarks as the end of a time period makes egoistic voluntary simplicity (EVS) more appealing to consumers. Notably, the matching effects are driven by distinct mechanisms, such that the effect of a match between a start temporal landmark and BVS appeals are driven by self-transcendence, whereas the effect of a match between an end temporal landmark and EVS appeals are motivated by self-enhancement. Beyond their substantive theoretical significance, our findings provide marketing campaigns with tools to enact strategies that support voluntary simplicity.
Relationship Closeness Increases Spicy Food Preference in Joint Consumption
Authors: Yunzhi Huang (Xiamen University), Jun Ye (Xiamen University)
Presenting Author: Yunzhi Huang (Xiamen University)
This research examines the effect of relationship closeness with a diner on consumers’ spicy food preference in joint consumption. With evidence from secondary data and two experiments, we proved that consumers are more likely to choose spicy food with a close diner (e.g., friend) rather than a distant diner (e.g., acquaintance). This effect is due to consumers perceiving more social support from the close relationship and thus buffering the social risk of eating spicy food in the public context.
The Sharing Economy: Peer-to-Peer Contagion
Authors: Ipek Ozer (ESADE Business School, Ramon Llull University), María Galli (ESADE Business School, Ramon Llull University), Ana Valenzuela (Baruch College, CUNY)
Presenting Author: Ipek Ozer (ESADE Business School, Ramon Llull University)
Despite the rising popularity and prevalence of sharing platforms, the sharing economy’s growth faces challenges on many grounds. This work examines the roles of essence contamination beliefs and of possession-self link in demotivating people from renting out their possessions. We propose and show that metaphysical contamination concerns hinder willingness to share a possession due to an anticipated threat to its essence. We also show that a strong possession-self link amplifies this effect. This research contributes to the study of consumer behavior, the practice of marketing, and consumer well-being.
(Un)Ethical Consumption? Prostitution Services in Thailand
Authors: Tanyatip Kharuhayothin (University of Phayao and SASIN School of Management, Chulalongkorn University), Yupin Patarapongsant (SASIN School of Management, Chulalongkorn University)
Presenting Author: Tanyatip Kharuhayothin (University of Phayao and SASIN School of Management, Chulalongkorn University)
This study, drawing on the dark side of consumption and collective self-esteem concepts, explores how socio-collective experience from sex workers and their clients leads to ongoing prostitution consumption. This research offers a strong theoretical contribution to ethical consumption literature and social implications to counter ongoing prostitutions consumption in emerging markets.
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