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Developing brand emotions across cultures: effects of self-construal and context

Alexander Jakubanecs (Centre for Applied Research at NHH, Bergen, Hordaland, Norway)
Magne Supphellen (Norwegian School of Economics, Bergen, Hordaland, Norway)
Hege Mathea Haugen (Telenor Group, Fornebu, Norway)
Njål Sivertstøl (Telenor Group, Fornebu, Norway)

Journal of Consumer Marketing

ISSN: 0736-3761

Article publication date: 2 April 2019

Issue publication date: 18 June 2019




The purpose of this paper is to study the nature of brand emotions elicited by advertising stimuli across cultures and the process underlying such emotional experiences.


The study uses factorial between-subjects design. Random samples of the populations were solicited from the panels of an international data provider in Norway and Thailand.


This research shows that Thai consumers experience more positive socially engaging and disengaging brand emotions and fewer negative socially engaging emotions relative to Norwegian consumers. The effects of culture are mediated by consumers’ self-construal. Social advertising context increases number of positive and negative socially engaging emotions among Thai (but not among Norwegian) consumers.

Research limitations/implications

The results highlight the importance of incorporating social orientation of emotions and adverting context in cross-cultural studies of brand emotions. The finding that Thai consumers (relative to Norwegian) experience higher levels of atypical for their culture – positive socially disengaging brand emotions requires further research.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that advertising stimuli need to be adapted to the cultural context. Marketing managers should use extensive pretesting in culturally distinct markets to make sure that advertising evokes brand emotions in line with the strategy.


Despite extensive research on brand emotions, extant studies on brand emotions across cultures are limited. This study is among the first to advance the understanding of how social orientation of emotions and advertising context underlie experience of brand emotions across cultures.



Jakubanecs, A., Supphellen, M., Haugen, H.M. and Sivertstøl, N. (2019), "Developing brand emotions across cultures: effects of self-construal and context", Journal of Consumer Marketing, Vol. 36 No. 4, pp. 472-483.



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