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The Name Game: How Naming Products Increases Psychological Ownership and Subsequent Consumer Evaluations



Naming products is quite prevalent in American culture; however, we are not aware of any consumer research that explores the effects of this phenomenon. Across three studies, we demonstrate that when consumers name products, their evaluations of those products increase (e.g., attitudes, purchase intentions, and willingness to accept). We find that name fit and creativity as well as subsequent psychological ownership drive this effect. We also demonstrate that the naming effect is quite robust—replicating across multiple products, presentation formats, and populations as well as persisting over time. These results contribute to consumer research by opening up a new substantive line of inquiry into the effects of naming products.
Naming products is quite prevalent in American culture; however, we are not aware of any
consumer research that explores the effects of this phenomenon. Across three studies, we
demonstrate that when consumers name products, their evaluations of those products increase (e.g.,
attitudes, purchase intentions, willingness to accept). We find that name fit and creativity as well as
subsequent psychological ownership drive this effect. We also demonstrate that the naming effect is
quite robust—replicating across multiple products, presentation formats, and populations as well as
persisting over time. These results contribute to consumer research by opening up a new substantive
line of inquiry into the effects of naming products.
Keywords: Brand management; Consumer evaluations; Psychological ownership; Product naming
Toyota’s “Más Que un Auto” (“More than a Car”) campaign encouraged Toyota owners to
name their cars and provided close to 100,000 name badges for owners to affix to their automobiles
(Diaz, 2015). In a recent commercial, a Liberty Mutual Insurance customer recounts a story about a
car she named “Brad.” Numerous banks allow customers to nickname accounts, and Build-A-Bear
customers register their stuffed animals by name and receive birth certificates to make it official.
But is encouraging consumers to name their products beneficial to marketers? While naming
products is a phenomenon most Americans can relate to, there is very little academic research on
names in general and even less on naming products. Therefore, we examine the effect of naming
products on consumer evaluations.
Conceptual Development
Names and Naming
Qualitative research in anthropology and sociology examines the role of names in kinship
(Finch, 2008), how parents from different backgrounds choose names to symbolize a child’s
heritage (Edwards & Caballero, 2008), and naming rituals across cultures (Kan, 2001). Both
surnames and forenames can link an individual to family members and help create familial bonds
(Finch, 2008). Similarly, nicknames can also help signify belonging (Kenny, 2014), express
affection (Degges-White, 2016; Landau, 2015), and convey an emotional connection (Steinberg,
2013). While we are not aware of any research that studies the effect of consumers naming
products, experts acknowledge that there is “great power in naming things” (Degges-White, 2016)
and others suggest that “assigning a name to a… possession is both a sign of growing affection and
a spur to further bonding” (Wattenburg, 2011). Thus, we examine whether these effects extend to
instances where firms invite consumers to name products and hypothesize that naming products
enhances consumer evaluations. In the next section, we discuss the conceptual basis for this effect.
Psychological Ownership
Naming is an activity generally performed for newborns and new pets or for nonhuman
objects (e.g. dolls, stuffed animals, cars) that the namer believes to “be mine”—a sign of
psychological ownership. Psychological ownership refers to a state in which an individual perceives
that an object is “theirs” regardless of actual physical or legal ownership (Pierce, Kostova, & Dirks,
2003). Pierce et al. (2003) share the following anecdote to illustrate: although he did not legally
own the truck he drove for work, one driver cleaned, cared for, and even named his truck. This
example suggests that psychological ownership may play a role in naming products—even if
consumers do not legally own them. Indeed, the act of naming takes time, effort, and ideas, which
represent an investment of the self into the object that can lead to feelings of psychological
ownership (Jussila, Tarkiainen, Sarstedt, & Hair 2015; Sarstedt, Neubert, & Barth, 2017). When
consumers do take psychological ownership of an object, their evaluations of that object increase
(Jussila et al., 2015; Peck & Shu, 2009; Pierce et al., 2003, Reb & Connolly, 2007). Thus, we
hypothesize that naming a product increases psychological ownership and subsequent consumer
evaluations compared to a product with no name.
Name Features
When choosing a name for their child, parents often select one they like (Edwards &
Cabellero, 2008) and believe fits with the type of child they desire (Finch, 2008; Zittoun, 2004).
Similarly, in naming pets or objects, people often choose names they like and believe fit with their
personal representation of the particular animal or object. For instance, an individual might choose
“Spot” for a Dalmatian. Similarly, in the Toyota example, owners often chose names that fit with
their product experiences, “such as ‘El Milagroso’ (‘The Miraculous’), conceived by one owner
who couldn’t believe how many years his ancient Toyota has done right by him” (Diaz, 2015).
Consequently, we expect that when naming a product, consumers are more apt to choose a name
that fits with their personal representation of the product. We also expect names that fit to be more
well-liked, as past research shows that prototypical category members (i.e., those with high fit) tend
to be better liked (Loken, Barsalou, & Joiner, 2008). Furthermore, congruity between product
elements, such as in product design (Veryzer & Hutchinson, 1998), product packaging (van Rompay
& Pruyn, 2008), or advertising (Lee & Labroo, 2004), can promote more favorable product
evaluations. As a result, we predict that better fitting and better liked names will enhance both
psychological ownership (via increasing consumers’ tendency to judge the product as “theirs” when
its name embodies their personal representation of it) as well as subsequent product evaluations.
We also examine two other name features that may heighten feelings of psychological
ownership: familiarity and creativity. First, when naming a child, parents may use names of family
members (Finch, 2008) or names that are popular (Zittoun, 2004)—that is, names that are more
familiar to them. Second, past research in other domains suggests that low (vs. high) levels of
consumer creativity can lead to lower levels of satisfaction with products (Hildebrand, Häubl,
Herrmann, & Landwehr, 2013). Therefore, in addition to fit and liking, we explore whether
familiarity or creativity gives certain names an advantage.
In looking at these name features—fit, liking, familiarity, and creativity—each reflects a
highly subjective judgment dependent on the idiosyncrasies of a consumer’s personal history. For
example, past research notes that judgments of name fit and creativity are a function of an
individual’s prior experiences (e.g., due to differences in culture, Paletz & Peng, 2008; occupation,
Koslow, Sasser, & Riordan, 2003; etc., Caroff & Besancon, 2008; Hood, 1973). Name familiarity,
too, is clearly based on an individual’s personal experiences with names, which vary by family,
region, or culture, among other factors. Thus, we suspect that the names consumers give products
reflect highly individualized perceptions that vary from person to person. So, although it would be
advantageous for marketers to assign names that are comparable to self-names in terms of these
name features, finding the best name may pose a challenge due to the high bar that the uniqueness
of self-names sets. Consequently, we hypothesize that self-names (provided by the consumer) will
be superior to assigned names, increasing both psychological ownership and product evaluations.
However, whether certain types of marketer assigned names are better than others remains an open
question. For example, one might expect an assigned name that describes the product better (e.g.,
“Muggy” for a mug) to perform better than an assigned name that is not descriptive and seems more
remote from consumers’ representations of the product (e.g., “Bob” for a mug). Therefore, in
addition to self-names, we explore different types of marketer assigned names as well.
Overview of Studies
We conduct three studies to assess whether naming a product enhances consumer
evaluations. In Study 1, we examine the naming effect by comparing self-names to no name. In
Study 2, we compare self-names to assigned names and test whether psychological ownership
mediates this effect. Finally, in Study 3, we investigate how various name features affect
perceptions of psychological ownership and subsequent consumer evaluations.
Study 1: The Naming Effect
Forty-eight undergraduate students received course credit for participating in two lab
sessions (four weeks apart). We randomly assigned participants to either a self-name or control (no
name) condition. During the first lab session, all participants received a plain yellow stress ball and
read that the purpose of the study was to examine whether stress balls are effective in managing
stress. Participants in the self-name (but not control) condition provided a name for the stress ball
and described why they chose that name. Participants were given instructions to squeeze the stress
ball at least once a day. In the second session, participants reported how much money (in USD) it
would take for them to sell the stress ball—that is, their willingness to accept (WTA).
Eight participants from the first lab session did not return for the second session, so we
excluded them from the analysis. For the remaining 40 participants (Mage = 20, 44% female), we
log-transformed WTA values (adding .01 to zeros to facilitate transformation). As predicted, an
ANOVA on log-transformed WTA revealed that participants valued the stress ball more in the self-
name than control condition (F(1, 38) = 4.42, p < .05, ηp2 = .10)—with original prices more than $1
higher in the self-name condition (Mself = $4.07 vs. MCG = $2.67). See Figure 1.
These results provide preliminary evidence that naming a product leads to higher consumer
valuations even after four weeks. Although all participants in Study 1 had physical possession of the
stress ball, they may vary in the degree to which they felt that the ball was “theirs” (i.e., had
feelings of psychological ownership). Therefore, in Study 2, we examine the mediating role of
psychological ownership, compare self-names to assigned names, and explore whether names affect
purchase intentions.
Study 2: Psychological Ownership as the Underlying Process
Two hundred undergraduate students received course credit for participation in this study
(Mage = 21, 46% female). We randomly assigned participants to one of four conditions: self-name,
descriptive name, non-descriptive name, or control (no name). All participants viewed a picture of a
blue stapler—a mundane, ordinary object. In the self-name condition, participants named the
stapler, while those in the two assigned name conditions read that the stapler was named “Blue”
(descriptive) or “Steve” (non-descriptive). We selected these names based on a pretest that revealed
them as the most commonly used descriptive and non-descriptive names given to the stapler.
Participants in the control did not see any name. All participants viewed five different pictures of
the stapler on a computer screen (each photo for 10 seconds) before rating the stapler. In the three
name conditions, the name of the stapler appeared above each picture. Finally, participants rated
their purchase intentions (1-item: 1 “very unlikely” to 7 “very likely”) and feelings of psychological
ownership (3-items: 1 “strongly disagree” to7 “strongly agree”, Peck & Shu, 2009, e.g., “I feel like
I own this stapler”; see Methodological Appendix [MDA] for items).
An ANOVA on purchase intentions revealed a significant main effect (F(3, 196) = 3.75, p = .
01, ηp2 = .05). As predicted, participants reported higher purchase intentions for self-name (Mself =
4.49) than the descriptive name (Mdescriptive = 3.75; F(1, 196) = 5.71, p < .05), non-descriptive name
(Mnon-descriptive = 3.74; F(1, 196) = 5.73, p < .05), or control (Mcontrol = 3.50; F(1, 196) = 9.98, p < .01).
There were no significant differences between descriptive, non-descriptive, and control conditions.
See Figure 2.
We created a psychological ownership index by averaging the means of the three individual
items (α = .95). An ANOVA on psychological ownership revealed a significant main effect (F(3,
196) = 4.37, p < .01, ηp2 = .06). Participants reported higher psychological ownership for self-name
(Mself = 2.80) than the descriptive name (Mdescriptive = 1.98; F(1, 196) = 7.23, p < .01), non-descriptive
name (Mnon-descriptive = 1.95; F(1, 196) = 7.76, p < .05), or control (Mcontrol = 1.79; F(1, 196) = 10.78, p
< .01). There were no significant differences between descriptive, non-descriptive, and control
To assess mediation of psychological ownership, we ran a mediation analysis with a
multicategorical independent variable (Hayes & Preacher, 2014). We compared each condition to
self-name, controlling for the other two conditions (i.e., self-name vs. descriptive name controlling
for non-descriptive name and control; self-name vs. non-descriptive name controlling for
descriptive name and control; and self-name vs. control controlling for descriptive and non-
descriptive name). A bootstrap analysis (PROCESS, model 4; Hayes, 2013) supported mediation of
the effects of descriptive name (coded as 0; 95% CI of the indirect effect [.10, .75]), non-descriptive
name (coded as 0; 95% CI of the indirect effect [.10, .70]), and the control (coded as 0; 95% CI of
the indirect effect [.20, .78]) versus self-name (coded as 1) on purchase intentions. See Figure 3.
These results provide additional support for the naming effect: self-names increased
purchase intentions compared to assigned names or no name. We also found that psychological
ownership mediates this effect. While we did not find any significant differences between
descriptive and non-descriptive names, we questioned whether descriptive names may, in general,
lead to more favorable product evaluations. To examine this trend in more detail, we had two coders
(blind to the research hypotheses) rate each self-name generated in this study on five dimensions:
descriptiveness, fit, liking, creativity, and familiarity (1 “Not at all” to 5 “Very much”). Consistent
with our theorizing, fit, liking, creativity, and familiarity varied substantially between coders (all
Krippendorff’s α’s < .32). Only descriptiveness showed an acceptable level of reliability (α = .81).
While only one-third of the names’ mean ratings were at or above the midpoint for descriptiveness,
correlations of the raw ratings between descriptiveness and the four name features revealed that
perceptions of name fit (r = .60, p < .001) and liking (r = .48, p < .001) were significant (creativity:
r = .01, p = .93; familiarity: r = -.08, p = .45). These results support our expectation that
interpretations of meanings of names are highly subjective. Accordingly, we still expect self-names
to be superior to assigned names. These findings also suggest that when assigning names, it is worth
examining whether descriptive (vs. non-descriptive) names are more successful due to an increase
in fit and liking. In Study 3, we implement a within-subjects design to examine these results more
thoroughly as well as to identify name features that drive our self-name effect.
Study 3: What Name Features Drive Naming Success?
We employed a mixed design where product was a between subjects factor and name
condition was a within subjects factor. We randomly assigned MTurk respondents (N = 121, Mage =
32, 42% female) to one of two products: a white mug or blue stapler. All participants rated self-
name, descriptive name, and non-descriptive name conditions for the product. For the self-name
condition, participants named the product. For the descriptive name condition, the object was
named “Muggy” (mug) or “Blue” (stapler). For the non-descriptive name condition, the object was
named “Bob” (mug) or “Steve” (stapler). “Muggy” and “Bob” were the most common descriptive
and non-descriptive names (respectively) for the mug, as generated by participants in a separate
pretest. We randomized name order and to prevent fatigue, participants completed single item
ratings of attitudes (1 “Not at all” to 7 “Very much”), purchase intentions (1 “Very unlikely” to 7
“Very likely”), and psychological ownership (1 “Strongly disagree” to 7 “Strongly agree”).
Participants also rated six items that capture the name features of liking, fit, creativity, and
familiarity (1 “Not at all” to 7 “Very much”) (see MDA for items). Using these same measures in a
pretest, the results of a factor analysis revealed that fit, appropriateness, general liking of the name,
and liking of the name for the specific product loaded onto a single factor which we call the fit
index. Familiarity loaded onto a second factor, and creativity did not load highly on either factor, so
we investigate these two name features separately. (See MDA for factor loadings).
A mixed ANOVA (where product was the between subjects factor and name condition was
the within subjects factor) revealed a significant main effect of name on attitudes (F(2, 238) =
59.07, p < .01, ηp2 = .33) and purchase intentions (F(2, 238) = 56.29, p < .01, ηp2 = .32); neither the
main effect of product nor the two-way interaction were significant (p’s > .05). Participants reported
higher attitudes (Mself = 5.34) and purchase intentions (Mself = 4.84) for self-names than assigned
descriptive (attitudes: Mdescriptive = 4.26, F(1, 238) = 34.60, p < .01; purchase intentions: Mdescriptive =
3.89, F(1, 238) = 29.17, p < .01) or non-descriptive (attitudes: Mnon-descriptive = 3.36, F(1, 238) =
117.87, p < .01; purchase intentions: Mnon-descriptive = 2.98, F(1, 238) = 112.57, p < .01) names.
Participants also reported higher attitudes (F(1, 238) = 24.75, p < .01) and purchase intentions (F(1,
238) = 27.13, p < .01) for descriptive versus non-descriptive names. See Figure 4.
A mixed ANOVA on psychological ownership revealed a significant main effect of name
(F(2, 238) = 88.70, p < .01, ηp2 = .43) and two-way interaction (F(2, 238) = 4.45, p = .01, ηp2 = .04);
the main effect of product was not significant (p > .10). Of interest and consistent with our attitudes
and purchase intentions results, participants reported higher psychological ownership for self-names
(Mself = 4.98) than assigned descriptive (Mdescriptive = 3.17, F(1, 238) = 74.23, p < .01) or non-
descriptive (Mnon-descriptive = 2.22, F(1, 238) = 171.72, p < .01) names. Participants also reported higher
psychological ownership for descriptive versus non-descriptive names (F(1, 238) = 20.15, p < .01).
(This pattern replicates for means and contrasts by product; see MDA.)
To gain more insight into why certain names result in better outcomes, we examined the
impact of the fit index (αself = .86, αdescriptive = .93, αnon-descriptive =.90), creativity, and familiarity on
psychological ownership and subsequent consumer evaluations (see Table 1 for means). To assess
this within-subjects serial mediation, we ran the MEMORE macro (Montoya & Hayes, 2016).
Because the macro only allows two repeated measures conditions at a time, we ran three name
comparisons (non-descriptive vs. descriptive name, non-descriptive name vs. self-name, and
descriptive name vs. self-name). Bootstrap analyses supported serial mediation of the fit index and
creativity for all three comparisons (see Table 1 for details). As one might expect, increases in the fit
index and creativity (but not familiarity) led to increases in psychological ownership and
subsequent attitudes and purchase intentions. See Figure 5 for one example of the repeated
measures mediation model.
Using a within-subjects approach, we replicate the superiority of self-names and find that
assigned descriptive names are also more successful than assigned non-descriptive names. In
addition, we tested several name features and found that name fit and creativity increased
psychological ownership and subsequent consumer evaluations, providing initial evidence that
certain types of names have advantages over others.
General Discussion
To our knowledge, this is the first empirical assessment of the effects of naming products.
We found that self-naming products increases consumer evaluations relative to assigned or no
names—an effect that replicated across multiple products, presentation formats, and populations,
and persisted over time. When consumers were invited to name a product (vs. viewing a product
with an assigned name), they rated the name as better fitting and more creative, which increased
their feelings of psychological ownership of the named product. These feelings of psychological
ownership, in turn, led to more favorable product evaluations. Serial mediation analyses supported
this chain of effects. Further, although not significant in our between-subjects study, assigning a
descriptive name was more successful than assigning a non-descriptive name in a within-subjects
study. Results indicate that this effect was due to increased fit and creativity of the descriptive (vs.
non-descriptive) names. However, before drawing conceptual or managerial conclusions, further
research is needed. Results may be a function of the specific names chosen in our research.
Although we observed some benefit of descriptive assigned names, self-names were
generally superior. In other words, our participants rated both descriptive and non-descriptive
assigned names as less fitting (i.e., these names had lower fit, were less appropriate, and were less
well liked) and less creative than self-names, which led to decreased feelings of psychological
ownership and subsequent product evaluations. The question arises as to whether a marketer is ever
able to assign a name to a product that is as good of a fit and as creative as one chosen by the
consumer. More research is needed to answer this question. One possible outcome is that, assuming
a marketer could find a name that fits as well and is as creative as the name chosen by a consumer,
then assigning that name should be a good substitute for self-naming. However, because these name
features are highly individualized (i.e., perceptions vary from person to person), choosing an
assigned name for a population of consumers that matches their individualized judgments of fit and
creativity is a challenging task. Future research might examine how crowdsourcing product names
affects name fit and creativity, psychological ownership, and subsequent sales.
A second possible outcome is that there is something about the process of self-naming that
contributes to the name’s inherent superiority over and above the name’s fit/creativity. For example,
the process of self-naming may include some of the same processes as self-design, including
mastery or involvement by the creator, that are not captured by our mediation results but result in
the perception that the self-names are better-fitting and more creative than assigned names. More
systematic research is needed to determine under what conditions alternative mediation is
Our research findings have other limitations. First, we used fictitious assigned names in our
studies that were preselected by the experimenters. While we did select assigned names that were
the most popular self-names among participants in a pretest, our results nevertheless could be
unique to the particular names selected or the particular product categories studied. Second, while
we consistently found benefits of self-naming over no names, the evidence for superiority of self-
naming over assigned names was weaker. Finally, all of our participants live in the U.S. It is unclear
whether the naming of inanimate objects extends to other cultures. Further work is needed to
substantiate our findings, using additional names and product categories, more systematically
exploring name features, and expanding to other populations of consumers.
Building on the studies we presented, future research could delve more deeply into how
branding impacts the naming effect by investigating self-naming in the presence of weak versus
strong brands. Existing product names could also be examined to try to tease out the effects of
brand versus product names (e.g., iPhone’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa). Additionally, while we
examined utilitarian goods, future work could explore the impact of naming hedonic goods or
Practitioners may want to try to encourage self-names over assigning names. Future research
could incorporate real-world contexts, such as examining whether prompts to name products in
shopping baskets (or the entire basket) in physical or online stores affects sales. Some firms already
encourage naming products via name badges or through product registration (e.g., Build-A-Bear).
Storefronts or online shopping could also be conducive contexts for self-naming products. It might
also be useful to explore if the naming effect holds in a donation or non-profit context. For example,
would animal shelters benefit if they allowed potential donors or families to name an animal before
adoption rather than donating to or adopting an animal that already has a name?
Other potential avenues for future research include exploring individual difference
characteristics (e.g., persuasion knowledge, skepticism, preference for function over form) or
examining potential floor/boomerang (e.g., poorly performing products) and ceiling effects (e.g.,
beloved dolls or stuffed animals). Naming research might also compare the naming effect before
versus after purchase, or track the effects of changes based on usage or over the life of the product
(e.g., legendary blues singer B.B. King named his guitars “Lucille” after purchase, Kerekes &
O’Neill, 1997). Finally, while we invited consumers to name products, future work could assess the
phenomenon of spontaneous naming and compare it to the results reported here. Suffice it to say,
we believe naming products is a phenomenon most U.S. consumers can relate to and presents a
substantive area rife with research opportunities.
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... Participants then picked up a bag of four-color premium ARTEZA watercolor paint pens from a basket located in the front end of the laboratory room. Since naming (Stoner et al., 2018) and marking (Kirk et al., 2017) are typical procedures to induce psychological ownership, participants were required to write down their nicknames (write down the word "Shared") on the white label of the bag "because they own (share) it. " ...
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Access-based services allow financially-constrained individuals to consume a variety of goods and services without the cost of sole ownership. But might there be dangers in communicating about access-based consumption in terms of its affordability, particularly among this segment of consumers? To answer this question, we investigate the effects of framing access-based consumption in terms of two primary benefits: affordability and variety. Results from four studies suggest that although affordability might rationally be of most interest to financially-constrained individuals, framing access-based consumption’s benefits in terms of affordability undermines the happiness they may extract from their consumption relative to framing in terms of variety. This difference emerges because communications focused on affordability re-affirm the negative self-identity financially-constrained individuals perceive as a result of their financial situation. Given these findings, we make clear recommendations for communications related to the access-based economy and this vulnerable set of people.
... Psychological ownership has recently come into spotlight as a major factor influencing consumers' attitudes and behaviors in various research fields such as business, marketing, consumer, psychology, and information system [10][11][12]21,31]. More recently, especially, as the paradigm of ownership gradually changes from tangible objects to intangible objects with the development of IT, the role of users' psychological ownership in the cyberspace has been noted. ...
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With the advanced development of IT, people are spending an increasing amount of time in the cyberspace and perceive psychological ownership of intangible objects (e.g., e-books, avatars, online movie streaming services), which they come to regard as “theirs”. This study focuses on users’ psychological ownership of OTT (over the top) services, which have recently received much attention, and investigates how service providers can present recommendation information more effectively when recommending content to users. This study, based on psychological ownership theory, specifically attempts to verify which method of recommending information is effective in correlation to the level of psychological ownership that a user feels about an online service. Additionally, this study presents this effect in terms of psychological distance, which we argue is the underlying mechanism of psychological ownership. Watcha, one of South Korea’s OTT services, was employed as the experimental subject in this study, and a scenario-based test was conducted. In conclusion, this study found that for users with high psychological ownership of online services, a recommendation information message based on objective and concrete information about a movie was more effective, whereas for users with low psychological ownership, abstractly expressed messages were more effective. Furthermore, by applying a moderated mediation model, this study confirmed that psychological distance mediated the results stated above.
... It may be as simple as helping design the look or feel or some other aspect of the shared product or the mediating service interface (Fuchs et al. 2010; More- au 2011), or else investing personal labour, such as by assembling a product (Norton et al. 2012). Another effective technique is to assign customers the task of naming the product or service (Stoner et al. 2018); if customers give the scooter they use a nickname, it might prompt better care. The naming technique even can be effective with public goods, such as a lake. ...
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The sharing economy is an omnipresent topic, not just in academia but throughout public discourses. Key questions thus have been approached from various research perspectives. To gain a comprehensive view of these perspectives, this commentary features contributions from a group of respected scholars, sharing their research findings, personal observations, and informed interpretations of the sharing economy. Their individual commentaries reflect unique theoretical perspectives, and they include discussions of why the sharing economy makes service management research more relevant, implications for companies and consumers, and key research needs.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationships between points of attachment and participative decision-making, on the one hand, and team identification and psychological ownership, on the other. It also analyses how team identification and psychological ownership explain intentions to purchase team-licensed sports merchandise and the main sponsor’s sports-apparel products. Data were collected from members of FC Barcelona, who are also season-ticket holders, by means of an online survey (n = 1180). Partial least squares is used to test and validate the proposed theoretical model. The results indicate that players, fans and nation-attachment explain team identification and psychological ownership, whereas soccer only affects team identification. Participative decision-making strongly influences psychological ownership, which is in turn positively affected by team identification. Findings also reveal that the intentions to purchase team-licensed sports merchandise and the main sponsor’s sports-apparel products are better explained by members’ psychological ownership than by team identification. Managerial implications, such as the need to improve feelings of psychological ownership in the club’s promotional activities and to continue to strengthen the other professional sports sections are discussed.
Background Patients with mechanical circulatory support devices regularly experience positive and negative emotions which are reinforced through interactions with their device. We explored emotional relationships between patients and their MCS devices through the names they assign to those devices. Objectives We sought to characterise device naming and suggest future developments which might capitalise on the naming phenomenon to improve patient wellbeing. Methods Qualitative online ethnography extracted comments on device names and emotions from a social media group. Thematic analysis grouped the comments according to their explicit or implied emotions, and their potential consequences for designing future MCS treatment. Results Thematic analysis identified 28 codes to characterise the names, from which we inferred 4 main themes for proposed emotional relationships. They centred on humour, coping, improving acceptance for family and friends, and reclaiming agency. Conclusion We suggest that by deliberately considering these factors in future research and development, clinicians and device manufacturers have scope to improve patient wellbeing.
Purpose This study investigated the effect of adding a customer's name onto a standard product on the customer's product attitude from the perspective of the name-letter effect and psychological ownership theory. Design/methodology/approach A 2 × 2 experiment was conducted to test the name effect in customization services. The main effects, mediation effects and moderation effects were analyzed using SPSS 22.0 and PROCESS 2.16.3. Findings Adding customers' personal names onto a standard product positively affected their attitude toward the product, and these effects were mediated by psychological ownership. Furthermore, customers' responses were moderated by self-threat, whereby threatening customers' self-concept enhanced their attitude toward the product that had their name on it. Originality/value This study found a positive name effect that is applicable to customization services. It also identified mediating and moderating mechanisms underlying this effect. Therefore this study extends previous studies on customization services that have solely focusing on complex product personalization by focusing on a service that requires less effort and a more basic customization service. This study also extends previous findings about name-letter effects by focusing on the associations between an individual and an object that are induced by shared name letters and by studying how directly adding a personal name onto an object can influence these associations.
In this research, we investigate the impact of anthropomorphism on used product transactions. The results of three experiments with different types of products and in different types of transaction channels (i.e., online auctions and fixed-price selling formats) provide converging evidence that anthropomorphism leads sellers to set higher selling prices for their used products. In this research, we theorize that this outcome occurs because sellers develop strong emotional connections with their anthropomorphized products and hesitate to end the relationship. We also highlight an important boundary condition for this core effect. We demonstrate that this effect of anthropomorphism occurs when sellers have positive attitudes toward the past.
Purpose This study empirically tests a brand ownership framework based on psychological ownership theory. It examines the role of participative brand development in developing brand ownership among different social value orientation (i.e. proself and prosocial). Furthermore, it examines brand ownership's effects on various food brand supportive behaviours and the moderating role of consumer perceived ethicality. Design/methodology/approach To understand the participative brand development effect on brand ownership and brand supportive behaviours of organic food and local cultural food from the consumer perspective, primary data collected via 668 valid questionnaires tested the conceptual model using partial least squares structural equation modelling. Findings Participative brand development has a significant influence on brand ownership. Moreover, brand ownership is an important factor in affecting brand supportive behaviours. The negative relationship between brand ownership and positive word of mouth for those who have higher consumer perceived ethicality is significant. Moreover, social value orientation, the relationships between participative brand development and brand ownership differ significantly. Research limitations/implications First, it only focusses on the antecedents of brand ownership among different proself and prosocial groups in Taiwan. However, Taipei, as an important city in Taiwan, is a microcosm of Taiwan's food development. It can reflect the problems existing in Taiwan's current food development process from one side. Second, customer perceived ethicality was moderated into the psychological ownership model to extend it. Future studies may consider sustainable consumer behaviour (White et al. , 2019) and other variables to explain the antecedents and consequences of brand ownership on the moderating role. Third, more multi-group analyses may explore the antecedents of brand ownership of more and different groups. Practical implications First, the participative brand development of proself groups (such as organic food marketers) towards brand ownership should emphasize the health and safety associated benefits of organic foods. If consumers perceive more health and safety benefits from adopting organic foods regarding their well-being needs, they will be more willing to increase their use of organic foods. Second, local cultural food marketers play a significant role in promoting processed foods, creative gourmet, rural leisure and festival events. In the current stage of local cultural food development, the more immediate consequences of pro-environmental behaviours for a given city, region or neighbourhood can make environmental actions and outcomes seem more tangible and relevant (Scannell and Gifford, 2013). Organic and local cultural food marketers should also pay attention to the change in the psychology of different group members and adjust marketing strategies appropriately. Social implications Consumers who are convinced that organic foods strongly adhere to the environmental and ethical principles they value may intensify their organic buying behaviour. Drawing on people's attachments to a specific place (Gifford, 2014), festival events can lead to engagement in local cultural products consumption. People may be subject to the opinions of important people, such as family members, relatives and friends. Therefore, communities could advocate for local cultural food via word of mouth and consume local cultural food daily to create a good pro-environmental atmosphere. Originality/value This is the first study to investigate the antecedents and consequences of brand ownership and the moderators of these relationships in the context of organic food and local cultural food.
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We replicate and extend Norton et al.’s (2012) and Mochon et al.’s (2012) studies on the IKEA effect, according to which consumers show a higher willingness-to-pay when self-assembling products. Our results support the robustness of the original effect and indicate that psychological ownership acts as a psychological mechanism that underlies the IKEA effect.
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Psychological ownership has emerged as an important predictor of workplace motivations, attitudes, and behaviors. While components of psychological ownership theory have been recently adapted to marketing contexts as well, much remains to be done. With a more comprehensive application and use of psychological ownership theory in marketing, additional understanding and explanation could be provided for many of the key phenomena, such as customer satisfaction, loyalty, word-of-mouth, and willingness to pay. In this article, we focus on individual psychological ownership– associated concepts and evidence with implications for research in marketing. Our work offers multiple avenues for future research focused on, but not limited to, marketing contexts.
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Enabling consumers to self-design unique products that match their idiosyncratic preferences is the key value driver of modern mass customization systems. These systems are increasingly becoming 'social', allowing for consumer-to-consumer interactions such as commenting on each other's self-designed products. The present research examines how receiving others' feedback on initial product configurations affects consumers' ultimate product designs and their satisfaction with these self-designed products. Evidence from a field study in a European car manufacturer's brand community and from two follow-up experiments reveals that receiving feedback from other community members on initial self-designs leads to less unique final self-designs, lower satisfaction with self-designed products, lower product usage frequency, and lower monetary product valuations. We provide evidence that the negative influence of feedback on consumers' satisfaction with self-designed products is mediated by an increase in decision uncertainty and perceived process complexity. The implications of socially enriched mass customization systems for both consumer welfare and seller profitability are discussed.
Researchers interested in testing mediation often use designs where participants are measured on a dependent variable Y and a mediator M in both of 2 different circumstances. The dominant approach to assessing mediation in such a design, proposed by Judd, Kenny, and McClelland (2001), relies on a series of hypothesis tests about components of the mediation model and is not based on an estimate of or formal inference about the indirect effect. In this article we recast Judd et al.'s approach in the path-analytic framework that is now commonly used in between-participant mediation analysis. By so doing, it is apparent how to estimate the indirect effect of a within-participant manipulation on some outcome through a mediator as the product of paths of influence. This path-analytic approach eliminates the need for discrete hypothesis tests about components of the model to support a claim of mediation, as Judd et al.'s method requires, because it relies only on an inference about the product of paths-the indirect effect. We generalize methods of inference for the indirect effect widely used in between-participant designs to this within-participant version of mediation analysis, including bootstrap confidence intervals and Monte Carlo confidence intervals. Using this path-analytic approach, we extend the method to models with multiple mediators operating in parallel and serially and discuss the comparison of indirect effects in these more complex models. We offer macros and code for SPSS, SAS, and Mplus that conduct these analyses. (PsycINFO Database Record
People develop feelings of ownership for a variety of objects, material and immaterial in nature. We refer to this state as psychological ownership. Building on and extending previous scholarship, the authors offer a conceptual examination of this construct. After defining psychological ownership, they address "why" it exists and "how" it comes into being. They propose that this state finds its roots in a set of intraindividual motives (efficacy and effectance, self-identity, and having a place to dwell). In addition, they discuss the experiences that give rise to psychological ownership and propose several positive and negative consequences of this state. The authors' work provides a foundation for the development of a comprehensive theory of psychological ownership and the conceptual underpinnings for empirical testing.
Subjects were categorized as either high, medium, or low in originality on the basis of their response to an Unusual Uses Test. These subjects in turn rated responses, for "level of originality," which had been previously and independently operationalized as to orginality by an alternative form of the same test. Data indicated that absolute level of judged originality was a function of orginality of rater and of the relative originality of response rated. High originality raters were less likely to discriminate among lower levels of originality than were either medium or low originality raters. These data are interpreted in light of social comparison theory. The importance of the general problem of test performance and its effect on the rating of others is stressed as an empirical problem having theoretical importance within the area of person perception.
Virtually all discussions and applications of statistical mediation analysis have been based on the condition that the independent variable is dichotomous or continuous, even though investigators frequently are interested in testing mediation hypotheses involving a multicategorical independent variable (such as two or more experimental conditions relative to a control group). We provide a tutorial illustrating an approach to estimation of and inference about direct, indirect, and total effects in statistical mediation analysis with a multicategorical independent variable. The approach is mathematically equivalent to analysis of (co)variance and reproduces the observed and adjusted group means while also generating effects having simple interpretations. Supplementary material available online includes extensions to this approach and Mplus, SPSS, and SAS code that implements it.
The article presents an exploratory analysis of the significance of personal names in contemporary Western societies, the UK in particular. Names are seen as having the dual character of denoting the individuality of the person, and also marking social connections.The focus is particularly on kinship, and the ways in which names can be, and are, used to map family connections as well as to identify unique individuals.The author argues that both surnames and forenames can serve to ground the individual within family relationships, though the extent to which this is used actively can vary. In turn the way in which names and naming are used within the family context sheds light upon contemporary kinship, with its enduring and variable dimensions. Additional empirical exploration of names and naming could further illuminate its characteristics.