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Product Category Familiarity and Preference Construction


  • Coupey, Eloise
  • Irwin, Julie R
  • Payne, John W


Marketers often base decisions about marketing strategies on the results of research designed to elicit information about consumers' preferences. A large body of research indicates, however, that preferences often are labile. That is, preferences can be reversed depending on factors such as how the preference is elicited. In three studies, we examine the effect of familiarity in two preference elicitation tasks, choice and matching judgments. We provide evidence of an interaction between familiarity and response mode (choice or matching) in each study. In study 3, we test the explanation that preference reversals may occur when the interaction of response mode with product-category familiarity leads to systematic changes in attribute weighting. Copyright 1998 by the University of Chicago.

Suggested Citation

  • Coupey, Eloise & Irwin, Julie R & Payne, John W, 1998. " Product Category Familiarity and Preference Construction," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(4), pages 459-468, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:jconrs:v:24:y:1998:i:4:p:459-68
    DOI: 10.1086/209521

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    2. Moore, Don A., 1999. "Order Effects in Preference Judgments: Evidence for Context Dependence in the Generation of Preferences, ," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 146-165, May.
    3. Carlson, Kurt A. & Pearo, Lisa Klein, 2004. "Limiting predecisional distortion by prior valuation of attribute components," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 94(1), pages 48-59, May.
    4. Meeran, Sheik & Jahanbin, Semco & Goodwin, Paul & Quariguasi Frota Neto, Joao, 2017. "When do changes in consumer preferences make forecasts from choice-based conjoint models unreliable?," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 258(2), pages 512-524.
    5. Cahyanto, Ignatius & Pennington-Gray, Lori & Thapa, Brijesh & Srinivasan, Siva & Villegas, Jorge & Matyas, Corene & Kiousis, Spiro, 2016. "Predicting information seeking regarding hurricane evacuation in the destination," Tourism Management, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 264-275.
    6. Wong, Kin Fai Ellick & Kwong, Jessica Y.Y., 2005. "Comparing two tiny giants or two huge dwarfs? Preference reversals owing to number size framing," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 98(1), pages 54-65, September.
    7. Kurt A. Carlson & Samuel D. Bond, 2006. "Improving Preference Assessment: Limiting the Effect of Context Through Pre-exposure to Attribute Levels," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(3), pages 410-421, March.
    8. Mäenpää, Katariina & Kale, Sudhir H. & Kuusela, Hannu & Mesiranta, Nina, 2008. "Consumer perceptions of Internet banking in Finland: The moderating role of familiarity," Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 266-276.
    9. Miquel-Romero, Maria José & Caplliure-Giner, Eva María & Adame-Sánchez, Consolación, 2014. "Relationship marketing management: Its importance in private label extension," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(5), pages 667-672.
    10. Varsha Jain & Subhadip Roy & Adwita Pant, 2013. "Effect of colour and relative product size (RPS) on consumer attitudes," Transnational Marketing Journal, Transnational Press London, UK, vol. 1(1), pages 41-58, October.
    11. Daniel R Clark & Dan Li & Dean A Shepherd, 2018. "Country familiarity in the initial stage of foreign market selection," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 49(4), pages 442-472, May.
    12. Gregory W. Fischer & Ziv Carmon & Dan Ariely & Gal Zauberman, 1999. "Goal-Based Construction of Preferences: Task Goals and the Prominence Effect," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 45(8), pages 1057-1075, August.
    13. Piccoli, Gabriele & Lui, Tsz-Wai & Grün, Bettina, 2017. "The impact of IT-enabled customer service systems on service personalization, customer service perceptions, and hotel performance," Tourism Management, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 349-362.
    14. Ravi Dhar & Ning Zhu, 2006. "Up Close and Personal: Investor Sophistication and the Disposition Effect," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(5), pages 726-740, May.
    15. Jack Walker, H. & Feild, Hubert S. & Giles, William F. & Bernerth, Jeremy B. & Short, Jeremy C., 2011. "So what do you think of the organization? A contextual priming explanation for recruitment Web site characteristics as antecedents of job seekers' organizational image perceptions," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 114(2), pages 165-178, March.
    16. Shih-Chieh Chuang & Danny Tengti Kao & Yin-Hui Cheng & Chu-An Chou, 2012. "The effect of incomplete information on the compromise effect," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 7(2), pages 196-204, March.
    17. Babin, Barry J. & Babin, Laurie, 2001. "Seeking something different? A model of schema typicality, consumer affect, purchase intentions and perceived shopping value," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 89-96, November.

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