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Consumer Response to Polysemous Brand Slogans

Claudiu V. Dimofte and Richard F. Yalch
Journal of Consumer Research
Vol. 33, No. 4 (March 2007), pp. 515-522
Published by: Oxford University Press
DOI: 10.1086/510225
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/510225
Page Count: 8
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Consumer Response to Polysemous Brand Slogans
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Abstract

Polysemous brand slogans have multiple meanings that may convey several product attributes. We build on extant research by suggesting that some consumers automatically access multiple meanings of a polysemous brand slogan, whereas others access only a single, immediately available meaning. A novel measure of automatic access to secondary meaning (the Secondary Meaning Access via the Automatic Route Test, or SMAART) is developed to capture this individual difference and show its consequences for consumer responses to polysemous slogans with unfavorable secondary meanings. The automatic‐access account is further validated by employing the Implicit Association Test (Greenwald, McGhee, and Schwartz), suggesting that the unconscious impact of polysemous brand slogans can be more influential than intuitively expected.

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