Let Me Tell You a Story: Consumer Responses to Company-Created Brand Stories

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Title: Let Me Tell You a Story: Consumer Responses to Company-Created Brand Stories
Author: Solja, Eeva
Contributor: Hanken School of Economics, Department of Marketing, Marketing
Belongs to series: Economics and society - 314
ISSN: 0424-7256 (printed)
2242-699X (PDF)
ISBN: 978-952-232-346-0 (printed)
978-952-232-347-7 (PDF)
Abstract: Stories are characteristic of humans. They have been embedded in our social and cultural environments in various forms throughout civilizations. Stories come naturally to us because we think in terms of stories and use them to communicate everyday events. Stories reflect the structure in which we make sense of, comprehend, and organize our experiences. Compelling stories persuade, entertain, and engage their audiences. It is therefore not surprising that marketers have become keen to capitalize on the persuasive effects of stories. Indeed, marketers frequently tell brand stories in multiple contexts with the aim to involve and persuade consumers. However, many questions on the effect of stories on consumers in commercial contexts remain. Research shows that companies can purposefully relate stories to brands to elicit positive brand responses. Stories help individuals interpret the meanings of brands and create a bond between a brand and a consumer. Brand stories are told, for instance, on packaging, in promotions, on web sites, in social media, and on price tags. While the influential nature of stories as such has been widely acknowledged and verified in advertising research, many theoretically and managerially relevant issues remain unexplored. Previous studies have looked at stories in print and TV ads, while packaging and price promotions have been overlooked. Packaging and price promotions are key marketing tactics, which differ from ads in several respects, such as the framing and length of the message. This dissertation examines consumer responses to different types of brand stories on packaging, in advertising, and in price promotion messages. Brand stories are examined in terms of short, emotional and mental simulation brand stories. The dissertation reports on six experiments in three separate studies. It offers significant contributions to storytelling, packaging, and pricing literature, as well as to business practice. The findings demonstrate that brand stories on packaging and in price promotions can influence several significant consumer responses positively. The dissertation also shows that the storytelling context acts as a boundary condition to the effectiveness of different types of brand stories. Hence, brand stories should be tailored according to context to reach maximal effectiveness. (The original essays are included only in the printed version.)
URI: https://helda.helsinki.fi/dhanken/handle/123456789/168566
Date: 2017-09-15
Subject: brand story
short brand story
emotional brand story
mental simulation
consumer brand responses
narrative processing
price promotion
discount presentation

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