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Article
Publication date: 8 January 2018

Eunyoung (Christine) Sung and Patricia Huddleston

This paper explores the antecedents and consequences of consumers’ need for self-image congruence on their retail patronage of department (high-end) and discount (low-end…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper explores the antecedents and consequences of consumers’ need for self-image congruence on their retail patronage of department (high-end) and discount (low-end) stores to purchase name-brand products in two product categories, apparel and home décor. It also compared online to offline shopping and considered two mediator variables, frugality and materialism.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper analyzed the hypothesized relationships using structural equation modeling (SEM) and MANOVA. Study 1 suggested the model using secondary data, and Study 2 measured and confirmed the relationships using scenario-based online survey data. An MANOVA test was used to compare the shopping behavior of consumers with high and low need for self-image congruence.

Findings

A strong causal link was found between concern with appearance and need for self-image congruence, and a positive relationship between need for self-image congruence and high- and low-end retail store patronage offline and online. While the group with high (vs low) need for self-image congruence was more likely to patronize department stores, unexpectedly, both the high and low self-image congruence groups were equally likely to shop at discount stores.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that marketing messages focusing on concern for appearance may succeed by tapping into consumers’ need for self-image congruence with brand product/retail store images. Results also showed that consumers with high self-image congruence often patronize discount retail stores, suggesting marketing opportunities for low-end retailers.

Originality/value

Because consumers with high need for self-image congruence patronize both department and discount stores, it is suggested that self-image congruity may be multi-dimensional. The current study is also the first to examine structural relationships to test patronage behavior between department and discount stores offline and online.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 35 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 1996

Timothy R. Graeff

Argues that the degree of congruence (similarity) between a brand’s image and a consumer’s self‐image (self‐concept) can have significant effects on consumers’ brand…

Abstract

Argues that the degree of congruence (similarity) between a brand’s image and a consumer’s self‐image (self‐concept) can have significant effects on consumers’ brand evaluations and purchase intentions. Results from this research suggest that marketers can manage the effects of brand and self‐image on consumers’ brand evaluations. The effects of brand image can be magnified by using promotional messages that encourage consumers to think about their own self‐image while evaluating a brand. Results also suggest that consumers who have self‐images similar to a brand’s image are more persuaded by advertisements encouraging them to think about their own self‐image, whereas consumers who have self‐images different from a brand’s image are more persuaded by advertisements encouraging them to think about only functional product quality.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

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Article
Publication date: 15 March 2013

Jeremy I. Abel, Cheryl L. Buff and John C. O’Neill

The purpose of this research is to investigate the extent to which actual and ideal self‐congruities (image) are associated with health club patronage, a conspicuous…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to investigate the extent to which actual and ideal self‐congruities (image) are associated with health club patronage, a conspicuous consumption situation. Previous studies which have examined the applicability of the image congruence hypothesis to consumer behavior have scarcely examined its effect in the services industry. An integrative model of self‐concept, self‐congruity and health club image provides the foundation for hypotheses development.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey‐based methodology was employed in the current investigation, as paper‐and‐pencil surveys were administered on‐site at several local health clubs and an on‐line version of the questionnaire was made available to college students.

Findings

Consumers’ actual self‐image, rather than ideal self‐image, was more strongly associated with their perception of their health club's brand image and, thus, served as a stronger indicator of health club patronage.

Practical implications

Health club members exhibited a greater tendency to match the image they currently held of themselves with the brand image of their patronized health club. Health clubs would do well to develop and promote a brand image that is aligned more closely with members’ actual self‐images rather than attempting to develop a brand image that correlates more strongly to members’ idealized self‐images.

Originality/value

The current investigation evidences the applicability of the image congruence hypothesis to a particular service product that has not been examined in prior image congruence studies.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2001

Ahmad Jamal and Mark M.H. Goode

Previous research indicates that the self‐image product image congruity (commonly known as self‐image congruence) can affect consumers’ product preferences and their…

Abstract

Previous research indicates that the self‐image product image congruity (commonly known as self‐image congruence) can affect consumers’ product preferences and their purchase intentions. Self‐image congruence can also facilitate positive behaviour and attitudes toward products. This paper reports findings from a research study which was conducted to determine the effect of self‐image congruity on brand preference and satisfaction in the precious jewellery market in the UK. A questionnaire was sent to 500 consumers of precious jewellery in five major cities of the UK. Results indicate that self‐image congruity was a very strong predictor of consumers’ brand preferences and a good predictor of consumer satisfaction. Respondents with higher levels of self‐image congruity were more likely to prefer the brand and enjoy higher levels of satisfaction with the brand as compared to those with lower levels of self‐image congruity. The paper discusses the implications for brand managers so that they can position their brands in an effective way.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 19 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

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Article
Publication date: 7 June 2019

Jiseon Ahn

This study aims to analyze the antecedents and consequences of customers’ actual and ideal self-congruence in the tourism and hospitality context. This research analyzes…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to analyze the antecedents and consequences of customers’ actual and ideal self-congruence in the tourism and hospitality context. This research analyzes playfulness (e.g. creative- and enjoyment-based), self-congruence (e.g. actual and ideal self-congruence) and passion (e.g. harmonious and obsessive).

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected from 350 integrated resort customers in the USA, and the hypotheses were examined using partial least square-structural equation modeling.

Findings

Findings suggest that creative-based playfulness significantly and positively influences the different types of customers’ self-congruence. Moreover, a fit between integrated resort brand and customers’ actual and ideal self leads to their harmonious and obsessive passion toward integrated resort brand.

Research limitations/implications

In the integrated resort setting, customers’ attitude toward innovation served as the antecedent of self-congruence and passion. The proposed model can be used to other sectors, such as hotels, restaurants and casinos.

Practical implications

The present study contributes to integrated resort service providers through the provision of several insights into how they can manage integrated resort brands.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the service research and extends previous studies in several important ways. Although previous studies have focused on analyzing the effect of the playfulness of product on customers’ behavior, the current study moves a step further by assessing its relationship with dual types of image congruence and passion in the tourism and hospitality setting.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 31 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 11 July 2017

Orie Berezan, Anjala Selena Krishen, Sarah Tanford and Carola Raab

Because communication channels are inherently unique, they may differentially affect customers depending on their preferred communication style. Therefore, the information…

Abstract

Purpose

Because communication channels are inherently unique, they may differentially affect customers depending on their preferred communication style. Therefore, the information that firms provide might not have the intended effect, which is to increase program loyalty. The purpose of the current study is to present a marketing communication model that focuses on promoting program loyalty via self-congruity with the communication style of information channels.

Design/methodology/approach

The study introduces a self-congruity theory-based structural equation model, which is validated through an online sample of 575 respondents. The model begins with communication style and investigates its impact on satisfaction and loyalty in relation to hotel loyalty program members.

Findings

The model confirms that different forms of communication have varying levels of relevance to program loyalty. Communication style, information quality, self-congruity and satisfaction are all significant predictors of program loyalty.

Practical implications

Management can cultivate a community of loyal program members through the recognition of self-image congruence and its relationship with communication style, along with a solid understanding of target markets.

Originality/value

Despite the apparent influence that communication has on loyalty, very little research evaluates the typologies (firm-created and customer-created), dimensions (electronic and in-person) and attributes of information in terms of their effects on program loyalty.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 51 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

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Article
Publication date: 20 March 2020

Yen Thi Hoang Nguyen and Hung Vu Nguyen

The paper aims to provide an alternative view to green consumption behaviors of millennials. In fact, studies on green consumption have usually assumed a common…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to provide an alternative view to green consumption behaviors of millennials. In fact, studies on green consumption have usually assumed a common attitude–behavior model for different generations. Instead, the view in this paper highlights two other constructs, online product review and self-image congruence, as the key antecedents to the behavior among the generation.

Design/methodology/approach

To test our proposed model, an online survey with a sample of 305 millennials in Vietnam was conducted. The sample shares similar demographic features with the millennials in the country. The data were collected in popular social networks and then validated before being analyzed with AMOS.

Findings

The model analysis results provided supports for the key roles of online product review and self-image congruence among millennials. In particular, online product review was found to have both direct and mediational impacts on green product purchase intention. Self-image congruence was also found to be a key antecedent to the intention.

Research limitations/implications

The model in this paper only examined the purchase intention. Moreover, only a single sample of millennials in Vietnam was investigated. Future research may incorporate the green consumption behavior to enhance the external validity and/or directly compare models for different generations or across countries to further confirm the differential generational patterns.

Practical implications

The paper includes recommendations for managers to use the online channels and to promote green product self-matching among millennials. These recommendations are not contrary to but go beyond the frequently suggested ones for attitude-related training or communication campaigns for green consumption.

Originality/value

This paper fills an identified gap to provide an alternative view to green consumption behaviors of millennials. Different from the common attitude–behavior view in green consumption research, two key constructs of online product review and self-image congruence are highlighted for the generation in this paper.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 33 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

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Article
Publication date: 6 February 2009

Dae Hee Kwak and Joon‐Ho Kang

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the notion of “symbolic purchase” which has long been documented in the management and marketing literature. In particular…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the notion of “symbolic purchase” which has long been documented in the management and marketing literature. In particular, self‐congruity theory has been examined in various domains of consumer behavior. However, little attention has been paid to the area of sport. In sport business, licensed‐merchandise (i.e. team apparel) has become an increasingly important revenue source and it strengthens fan identity and brand loyalty. Therefore, based on the self‐congruity theory, the aim is to investigate the effect of self‐image congruence on sport team‐licensed merchandise evaluation and purchase.

Design/methodology/approach

A proposed model incorporates self‐image congruence (SIC), perceived quality, and purchase intention of team‐licensed merchandise. The reliabilities of the scaled measures were established in a pilot study (n=66). Data (n=260) for this study were collected at two professional basketball games using a convenient sampling method.

Findings

The results of the structural model indicated that the model fits the data well and constructs of self‐image congruence and perceived quality combined explained 43 per cent of the total variance in purchase intention. The findings revealed that both SIC and perceived quality had a direct positive effect on purchase intention while perceived quality also acted as a mediator between SIC and purchase intention.

Research limitations/implications

The findings imply that SIC can be useful in predicting sport fans’ quality perception and purchase decisions on the team‐licensed merchandise. Future studies need to replicate this study in different regions and using different sports (i.e. soccer, baseball, etc.).

Originality/value

The findings extend the literature by incorporating self‐image congruence and perceived product quality in the purchase decision‐making process. This is the first known effort to apply self‐congruity theory in the spectator sport consumption context.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 47 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2009

Brian T. Parker

The purpose of this paper is to compare the brand personality and brand user‐imagery constructs in congruity theory to examine their relationship in the image congruence

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to compare the brand personality and brand user‐imagery constructs in congruity theory to examine their relationship in the image congruence model as a basis of modeling brand attitudes for publicly and privately consumed brands.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 272 surveys measured subjects' self‐image perceptions and subjects' perceptions of brand personality and user‐imagery. Congruence measures were used as indicators of the difference between respondent self‐image and each brand's image, and served as independent variables in stepwise regressions with brand attitude as the dependent variable.

Findings

The results indicated that, for publicly consumed brands, user‐imagery‐based congruence measures contributed more often to the explanatory power of the model. For privately consumed brands, brand personality congruity produced significant regressions but did not account for a large portion of explained variance, while user‐imagery only entered one private brand model.

Originality/value

Brand personality and brand user‐imagery are often used interchangeably in self‐congruity theory research. Although both constructs have received past research attention, no studies have compared them in the same study. The study fills the gap in the literature and enhances the usefulness of the self‐brand congruity model, providing a knowledge base for determining an overall brand positioning strategy.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 26 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

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Article
Publication date: 12 December 2016

Catheryn Khoo-Lattimore and Girish Prayag

This paper aims to examine the relationship between self-image of women travelers, accommodation preferences and the post-consumption behaviors of satisfaction and loyalty.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the relationship between self-image of women travelers, accommodation preferences and the post-consumption behaviors of satisfaction and loyalty.

Design/methodology/approach

Accommodation preferences were measured using multi-items adapted from the literature and multi-phases of qualitative research. Female guests recruited from a resort’s membership database in Malaysia resulted in 540 useable surveys. Data were analyzed using both exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis. Structural equation modeling was used to identify relationships between the various dimensions of accommodation preferences, self-image, satisfaction and loyalty.

Findings

A significant negative relationship was found between women actual self-image and the dimension of hotel activities. Several significant positive relationships were found between women ideal self-image and various room amenities factors. A significant relationship was also found between overall satisfaction and loyalty of guests.

Practical implications

The results provide hoteliers with significant insights into women’s accommodation preferences and identify opportunities for the packaging of accommodation attributes as well as promotion of hotel amenities that would appeal to the girlfriend getaway market.

Originality/value

This study is the first to evaluate significant relationships between self-image and accommodation preferences of women travelers from the girlfriend getaway market in Malaysia.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 28 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

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