Thursday 15 September 2011

When ‘Every little may not help…’

News that Sainsbury's is dropping its "try something new today" positioning after six years in favour of a "live well for less" commitment to its customers reflects both the pressures being put on its customers, and takes the company back to its roots, which is great quality food at great prices.  
However, a US study in the Journal of Consumer Research reveals a strange facet of consumer behaviour: people behave differently when they encounter companies' brands than they do when they encounter their slogans. In one example, exposure to the retailer brand name Walmart, typically associated with saving money, reduces subsequent spending, whereas exposure to the Walmart slogan, (Save money. Live better.) increases spending, In another study, consumers who were subliminally exposed to the word "slogan" wanted to spend more when exposed to a savings message and less when exposed to a sentence that encouraged luxury spending.
Fortunately retailers can rapidly change stance based upon immediate sales performance, whilst  brand owners are locked into change for at least a year..  

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