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Learning. BA 362 - Fall 2000. What are important learning issues for consumer behavior?. Generalization vs. discrimination issues Brand extensions - fit, brand-specific associations Trademark infringement or consumer confusion - overall gestalt is critical Consumer responses to outcomes

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Learning

BA 362 - Fall 2000


What are important learning issues for consumer behavior?

  • Generalization vs. discrimination issues

    • Brand extensions - fit, brand-specific associations

    • Trademark infringement or consumer confusion - overall gestalt is critical

  • Consumer responses to outcomes

    • Interpretation critical

    • Hedonic bias

  • Consumer satisfaction

    • Expectancy disconfirmation

    • Boulding et al. - will and should expectations


Hot New Research - how can learning processes enhance brand equity? (Stijn M. J. Van Osselaer and Joseph W. Alba, “Consumer Learning and Brand Equity,” Journal of Consumer Research, 2000, 27, 1-16)

  • The authors document how a learning process studied in classical conditioning, blocking, can cause consumers to focus on brand as the determinant of quality rather than on the underlying brand attributes that may be the “real” determinants of quality. This process thus enhances brand equity.

  • If individuals initially learn that one cue predicts quality (e.g., brand name), then they may fail to learn the relationship of later cues to quality; that is, further learning is blocked.

  • In an impressive set of studies, the authors show that this phenomenon applies to brands. When consumers first learn that brand name predicts quality, they fail to learn that specific attribute values predict quality. Once they have found a sufficient explanation, they do not search for another. This process can lead to incorrectly differentiating brands that have the same quality-determining attribute values.


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