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When Blemishing Leads to Blossoming: The Positive Effect of Negative Information

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  • Danit Ein-Gar
  • Baba Shiv
  • Zakary L. Tormala
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    Abstract

    This research uncovers a counterintuitive effect of negative information, showing that under specifiable conditions people will be more favorably disposed to a product when a small dose of negative information is added to an otherwise positive description. This effect is moderated by processing effort and presentation order, such that the enhanced positive disposition toward the product following negative information emerges when the information is processed effortlessly rather than effortfully and when the negative information follows rather than precedes positive information. Four studies demonstrate this blemishing effect in both lab and field settings and explore the proposed mechanism and boundary conditions.

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    File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/10.1086/660807
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    File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/full/10.1086/660807
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Consumer Research.

    Volume (Year): 38 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 5 ()
    Pages: 846 - 859

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    Handle: RePEc:ucp:jconrs:doi:10.1086/660807

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    Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JCR/

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    Cited by:
    1. Lu, Jingyi & Xie, Xiaofei, 2014. "To change or not to change: A matter of decision maker’s role," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 124(1), pages 47-55.

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