Research

(last updated February 2024)

* indicates equal contribution

 

Research Under Review and In Preparation

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The "Unique" Challenge of Promoting Luxury Purchases with Word of Mouth

Myaeng, Seo Young and Jake Teeny

(invited resubmission at Journal of Marketing)

Click to read the abstract

Although consumer word of mouth (WOM) has been widely shown to be one of the most powerful forms of marketing, the present work highlights one domain where its positive effect is reduced: luxury goods. Across both field and laboratory studies (N = 4,792), the authors demonstrate that consumers report less favorable attitudes and lower product choice, purchase intentions, and willingness to pay for luxury (relative to non-luxury) goods that are first encountered through WOM recommendations versus absent one. This effect is observed across different luxury product categories as well as different sources and channels of WOM, and it in part occurs because WOM can reduce the feelings of uniqueness elicited by the purchase. The authors then use this insight to identify real-world boundary conditions: consumer’s primary attribute of interest (i.e., uniqueness vs. quality), individual differences (i.e., their political identity), and the type of WOM (i.e., direct recommendation vs. mere mention). Altogether, this research offers a novel perspective on WOM’s effectiveness and the importance of the initial product encounter on consumers’ luxury attitudes.

* Presented in the Haring Symposium (expected 2024, Bloomington, IN), the Transatlantic Doctoral Conference (2023, London, UK), the Kellogg-Booth Student Symposium (2023, Chicago, IL), the Association for Consumer Research Conference (2022 | Denver, CO), and in the Society for Consumer Psychology Conference (2022 | Online)


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Deepfake Aversion: The Negative Impact of Deepfake Advertising on Brand and Celebrity Attitudes

Myaeng, Seo Young and Neal Roese

(under review at Journal of Public Policy & Marketing)

Click to read the abstract

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What's Mine Makes Me an Expert: Psychological Ownership Increases Advice Giving by Inflating Subjective Expertise

Myaeng, Seo Young and Jake Teeny

(manuscript in preparation)

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Consumers’ high (vs. control) psychological ownership over a product increases subjective expertise and advice-giving tendency over the product and its general product category by increasing self-connection. A curvilinear trend in this relationship is also observed where low ownership results in greater subjective expertise than the control group.

* Presented in the Association for Consumer Research Conference (2023 | Seattle, WA)

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Seeing Tesla as High-Tech and Sustainable: Dimensions of Brand Personality Revisited

Lee, Angela Y.* & Seo Young Myaeng*

(manuscript in preparation)

Click to read the abstract

Consumers’ perception of brand image plays a critical role in helping marketers formulate branding and positioning strategies to attract consumers. Since the Brand Personality Scale was developed by Aaker (1997) that identified five brand personality dimensions, new generations of consumers and brands have emerged. The authors sought to update the scale with a total sample of 2392 participants across fours studies. Study 1 (n = 150) showed a poor model fit of the original scale. Study 2 (n = 60) identified new traits that contemporary consumers use to describe brands to be used for further testing. Study 3 (n = 1,633) identified six brand personality dimensions—Caring, Fun, Competent, Sophisticated, Rugged, and High-tech—based on ratings of 57 brands on 74 traits. Study 4 (n = 549) validated the six dimensions using 42 traits. The authors provide comparisons of brand profiles between the original and the updated scales and offer examples of how marketers could leverage the new scale to compete in the marketplace.


Image source: Ekaterina Shevchenko from Unsplash

What Constitutes a Thoughtful Gift? Effort, Personal Specificity, and Their Relationship to Ethical Gift-Giving

Luttrell, Andy, Jake Teeny, and Seo Young Myaeng

(manuscript in preparation)

Click to read the abstract

Research in Progress

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Navigating the Unpredictable: Consumers Engage in Greater Negative WOM for Unexpected Events in Material (vs. Experiential) Products

Grabke, Jocelyn*, Jessie Jia*, Matejas Mackin*, Seo Young Myaeng*, and Neal Roese

(data collection in progress)

Click to read the abstract

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Self-Promotion, Social Comparison, and Meaning in Life

Huh, Young Eun*, Irene Scopelliti*, and Seo Young Myaeng*

(data collection in progress)

Click to read the abstract

Past studies show that people experience negative feelings toward other people’s bragging, but whether individual variables such as meaning in life change these responses are yet unknown. It has been established that the search for meaning in life (Search) and presence of meaning in life (Presence) influence how people view themselves and others. Thus, Search and Presence would also change the degree of negative emotions people experience from other’s bragging. The study results showed that Search is positively related to negative feeling and feeling envy, annoyed, and irritated toward others’ bragging. Presence, however, showed negative relationship with such emotions. Successful manipulation of Presence and Search further evinced this relationship. All studies have been preregistered on AsPredicted.

​* Presented in the Association for Consumer Research (2020 | Online), Society for Consumer Psychology Conference (2020 | Huntington Beach, CA) and in Marketing Science Conference (2019 | Rome, Italy)


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Deepfake Perceptions

Myaeng, Seo Young and Maferima Touré-Tillery

(data collection in progress)

Click to read the abstract