Strategic firms and endogenous consumer emulation
Better-informed consumers may be treated preferentially by firms because their consumption serves as a quality signal for other customers. For normal goods this results in wealthy individuals being treated better than poor individuals. We investigate this phenomenon in an equilibrium model of social learning with heterogeneous consumers and firms that act strategically. Consumers search for high-quality firms and condition their choices on observed actions of other consumers. When they observe consumers who are more likely to have identified a high-quality firm, uninformed individuals will optimally emulate those consumers. One group of consumers arise endogenously as “leaders” whose consumption behavior is emulated. Follow-on sales induce firms to give preferential treatment to these lead consumers, which reinforces their learning.
|Date of creation:||2008|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||Published in Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2008, 123(2), pp. 621. ISSN: 0033-5533|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +44 (020) 7405 7686
Web page: http://www.lse.ac.uk/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Bose, Subir & Orosel, Gerhard O & Ottaviani, Marco & Vesterlund, Lise, 2005.
"Dynamic Monopoly Pricing and Herding,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
5003, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Wolinsky, Asher, 1987.
"Information Revelation in a Market with Pairwise Meetings,"
The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS)
284, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
- Wolinsky, Asher, 1990. "Information Revelation in a Market with Pairwise Meetings," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 1-23, January.
- repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:i:4:p:910-928 is not listed on IDEAS
- Banerjee, Abhijit & Fudenberg, Drew, 2004.
Games and Economic Behavior,
Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 1-22, January.
- Fudenberg, Drew & Ellison, Glenn, 1995.
"Word-of-Mouth Communication and Social Learning,"
3196300, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Nelson, Phillip, 1970. "Information and Consumer Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(2), pages 311-29, March-Apr.
- Mark Rosenzweig & Andrew D. Foster, .
"Learning by Doing and Learning from Others: Human Capital and Technical Change in Agriculture,"
_068, University of Pennsylvania.
- Foster, Andrew D & Rosenzweig, Mark R, 1995. "Learning by Doing and Learning from Others: Human Capital and Technical Change in Agriculture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(6), pages 1176-1209, December.
- Dirk Bergemann & Juuso Valimaki, 1999.
"Experimentation in Markets,"
Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers
1214, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Dirk Bergemann & Juuso Valimaki, 1996.
"Learning and Strategic Pricing,"
Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers
1113, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Smallwood, Dennis E & Conlisk, John, 1979. "Product Quality in Markets Where Consumers are Imperfectly Informed," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 93(1), pages 1-23, February.
- McFadden, Daniel L & Train, Kenneth E, 1996. "Consumers' Evaluation of New Products: Learning from Self and Others," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(4), pages 683-703, August.
- Subir Bose & Gerhard Orosel & Marco Ottaviani & Lise Vesterlund, 2008. "Monopoly pricing in the binary herding model," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 37(2), pages 203-241, November.
- Sushil Bikhchandani & David Hirshleifer & Ivo Welch, 2010.
"A theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom and cultural change as informational Cascades,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
1193, David K. Levine.
- Bikhchandani, Sushil & Hirshleifer, David & Welch, Ivo, 1992. "A Theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom, and Cultural Change in Informational Cascades," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(5), pages 992-1026, October.
- Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1993.
"Design Innovation and Fashion Cycles,"
1049, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- Burnkrant, Robert E & Cousineau, Alain, 1975. " Informational and Normative Social Influence in Buyer Behavior," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(3), pages 206-15, December.
- Patrick Bolton & Christopher Harris, 1999. "Strategic Experimentation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(2), pages 349-374, March.
- Banerjee, Abhijit V, 1992. "A Simple Model of Herd Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(3), pages 797-817, August.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:29699. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (LSERO Manager)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.