To read this content please select one of the options below:

Mavens’ price and non-price on-pack extrinsic cue search behaviours: Implications for store brands

Alan M. Collins (Department of Food Business and Development, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland)
Richard G. George (Department of Food Marketing, Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA)

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management

ISSN: 0959-0552

Article publication date: 10 July 2017




The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether or not mavens’ dissemination activities are likely to promote or hinder retailers’ store brand premiumisation attempts, by revealing the relationship between mavens’ price and non-price on-pack extrinsic cue search and their store brand purchasing behaviours.


The paper adopts a hypothetic-deductive approach and develops a model of mavens’ store brand purchasing behaviour. The model is tested using SEM on a US data set containing 457 respondents. A full discussion of the direct, indirect and total effects is provided.


Mavens’ store brand purchasing behaviours are strongly linked to their price search activities and negatively related to their use of non-price on-pack extrinsic cues. This indicates that their dissemination activities are likely to stress lower prices and hence price competition rather than promote other cues used to infer quality. Thus, mavens are likely to inhibit retailers’ store brand premiumisation attempts. Mavens’ investments in time engaged in search activities are strongly linked to social returns rather than private financial savings.

Research limitations/implications

The work is based on data collected using an online survey in one region of the USA where store brands are not as prevalent in other countries such as the UK.

Practical implications

The investigation of non-price on-pack extrinsic cues reduces mavens’ store brand purchasing behaviours while the use of price cues increases them. This suggests that even with mavens’ market expertise that a non-price extrinsic cue deficit continues to exist for these products. Consequently, retailers need to re-examine and rework the cues contained on pack to convey more positive consumption-related information if mavens are to become store brand advocates.


Rather than conceptualising the maven as possessing market wide knowledge, this research adopts a domain specific perspective arguing that price mavenism can be distinguished from product-related mavenism with consequences for the set of extrinsic cues used as part of the maven’s search process. In doing so, it reveals the conflicting effects that these maven dimensions have on purchasing behaviours and the likely effects on mavens’ dissemination activities.



Collins, A.M. and George, R.G. (2017), "Mavens’ price and non-price on-pack extrinsic cue search behaviours: Implications for store brands", International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Vol. 45 No. 7/8, pp. 689-710.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles