Self Congruence In Consumer Behaviour

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Introduction
The intentions and attachments associated with a brand are key elements of brand trust which eventually translates into brand equity.
Brand intention is a brand’s concern for furthering the interests of its consumers and ensuring their welfare. For example, brand intentions will become more apparent when a problem arises with the product. What steps will be taken to alleviate consumer’s concerns? What steps will be taken to remedy or compensate the loss of consumers?
Brand attachment refers to a consumer’s affection or emotional connection with a brand. It is a cognitive state in which a consumer sees the brand as an extension of one’s self. This extension of one’s self could be both realistic and aspirational. (Ballester and
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This is because consumers are increasingly looking for “reality and authenticity” in marketing promotions. However, the “ideal self” remains important and companies continue to create emotional connections with promotions that promote ideal beauty. This is because consumers like brands that represent an aspiration. (Malär et al, 2011).
“Self-congruence” is central to brand attachment. Self-congruence is “a fit between the consumers’ self and the brand’s personality or image”. Brand personality attributes human characteristics to a brand. These characteristics or traits are based on consumers’ perception of the brand. Brand Personality has five dimensions: sincerity, excitement, competence; sophistication; and ruggedness (Liu et al, 2012).
Although, both actual and ideal self-congruence influence brand attachment, their effect may differ due to three factors: “product involvement, self-esteem, and public self-consciousness”. These three elements have a significant influence on the relation between self-congruence and brand attachment. These influences tend to affect the design and implementation of a brand personality. (Malär et al, 2011)
Brand Attachment and Product
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This comparison is related to the concept of actual self and ideal self. Consumers are loyal to brands that are in harmony (or congruent) with their actual or ideal self. (Esmaeilpour, 2015)
Brand Attachment and Public Self-Consciousness
Public self-consciousness refers to awareness of one’s self in a social context. People who have a high public self-consciousness strive to create a favorable public image. (Malär et al., 2011).
Prestige of a brand is linked with high status of product positioning. Brand prestige can:
(i) Influence purchase intention,
(ii) Boost consumers’ confidence during brand selection, and
(iii) Enhance consumers’ social status post brand purchase.
(Esmaeilpour, 2015).
Hypothesis
H1. Brand intentions and brand equity will be linked by brand credibility.
H2. Brand intentions and brand equity will be linked by brand experiences.
H3: Brand attachment and brand equity will be linked by the actual self.
H4: Brand attachment and brand equity will be linked by the ideal

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