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Weaver et al - Presenter's Paradox

Weaver et al - Presenter's Paradox - 1 Copyright Journal of...

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1 Copyright Journal of Consumer Research 2011 Preprint (not copyedited or formatted) Please use DOI when citing or quoting The Presenter’s Paradox KIMBERLEE WEAVER STEPHEN M. GARCIA NORBERT SCHWARZ Author Note Kimberlee Weaver ([email protected]) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Marketing at the Pamplin College of Business, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061. Stephen M. Garcia ([email protected]) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Norbert Schwarz ([email protected]) is the Charles Horton Cooley Collegiate Professor at the Department of Psychology, Ross School of Business, and Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. The authors wish to thank Danny Kahneman, Debbie Prentice, Joel Cooper, L. J. Shrum, Bob Wyer, and Oscar Ybarra for comments on an earlier version of this manuscript. We also gratefully acknowledge the comments of the editor, associate editor and four anonymous reviewers. Abstract This analysis introduces the Presenter’s Paradox . Robust findings in impression formation demonstrate that perceivers’ judgments show a weighted averaging pattern, which results in less favorable evaluations when mildly favorable information is added to highly favorable information. Across seven studies, we show that presenters do not anticipate this averaging pattern on the part of evaluators and instead design presentations that include all of the favorable information available. This additive strategy (“more is better”) hurts presenters in the perceivers’ eyes because mildly favorable information dilutes the impact of highly favorable information. For example, presenters choose to spend more money to make a product bundle look more costly, even though doing so actually cheapened its value from the evaluators’ perspective (study 1). Additional studies demonstrate the robustness of the effect, investigate the psychological processes underlying it, and examine its implications for a variety of marketing contexts.
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2 Copyright Journal of Consumer Research 2011 Preprint (not copyedited or formatted) Please use DOI when citing or quoting At the beginning of a journey, one of this article’s authors was sitting in a crowded airplane, awaiting take-off. After a two hour wait, a mechanical issue was announced, necessitating a switch to another aircraft. All passengers had to disembark, and many were visibly irritated. The airline did its best, or so they thought, to accommodate the disgruntled passengers by issuing the following gift packet: A $35 discount coupon for future travel, an amenity coupon for a meal, premium beverage or mileage bonus, and a 25-cent phone card. At the time, our author thought to herself that the phone card, which amounted to about 5 minutes of free long distance, looked quite cheap. It may not even be enough time to arrange alternate transportation given the two hour delay. Is it possible that the airline thought the thrifty coupon would add
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