Conceptualizing Guilt in the Consumer Decision-Making Process
Consumer purchase decisions can be influenced by many emotions, including guilt. Guilt which enters into the consumer purchase decision is identified as "consumer guilt" and may provide opportunities for marketers to influence the consumer decision process. A negative emotion which results from a consumer decision that violates one's values or norms, explores the consumer guilt construct in a series of focus groups. The groups were composed of subjects representing various age, religious affiliation, occupation, and income groups. Four types of consumer guilt were identified: financial; health; moral; and financial responsibility. Consumer guilt is further classified in terms of anticipatory and reactive states, occurring in both decisions to purchase as well as not to purchase, and as it relates to focus on oneself or others.
advertising, consumer behaviour, decision making, ethics, focus groups, marketing strategy, psychology, social responsibility
Burnett, Melissa S., and Dale A. Lunsford. "Conceptualizing guilt in the consumer decision‐making process." Journal of Consumer Marketing (1994).
Journal of Consumer Marketing