Right dose of parity information in ads positively affect consumers

January 27th, 2009 - 2:22 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, January 27 (ANI): Businessmen can positively affect consumers attitudes toward their products and services by offering such comparisons in their advertisements as show their brand to be equal to that of the competitor in some dimensions, says a research team including an Indian-origin expert.
Prashant Malaviya, of Georgetown University, and Brian Sternthal, Northwestern University, describe this way of comparing products as parity information.
Revealing their findings in the Journal of Consumer Research, the authors said that their study suggested that offering parity information in the right dose could positively affect consumers” attitudes toward products.
For their study, the researchers tested ads of various configurations to investigate the delicate art of when and where to include parity information.
They found that reaction to parity information, its timing and placement, differed for consumers with different purchasing goals.
They said that the effectiveness of including parity information depended on the consumer’’s mindset.
According to them, consumers with achievement goals evaluated the target brand more favourably when the features were presented over timenot all in one ad, enabling them to accomplish the goal of thoughtfully evaluating the product.
For these consumers, marketers ideally would offer the comparison information in a series of ads.
Safety purchasers, who wanted to avoid unwise purchases, were more persuaded by ads that presented the comparison information all at once.
For such consumers, the presentation of parity information at the start resulted in more favourable target evaluations than when researchers presented just the two dominant features.
Also, for such consumers, presenting all the features sequentially resulted in the least-favourable evaluations.
“These results imply that parity features in comparative advertising enhance brand evaluation if the information is presented in a manner that is consistent with the audiences” accomplishment or safety goal,” write the authors.
“If it is not, parity features either do not enhance evaluations or they can undermine them. These outcomes occur even though the ads present the same decision-relevant information, suggesting that how information is presented can have an independent enhancing or undermining effect on brand evaluations,” they add. (ANI)

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