Academic journal article Contemporary Management Research

A Study of the Relationship among Brand Experiences, Self-Concept Congruence, Customer Satisfaction, and Brand Preference

Academic journal article Contemporary Management Research

A Study of the Relationship among Brand Experiences, Self-Concept Congruence, Customer Satisfaction, and Brand Preference

Article excerpt

ABSTRACT

To meet the expectation of customers during experience era, it is important to understand their perceptions of different brands. To achieve this, this study aimed to investigate the relationship among brand experiences, self-concept congruence, customer satisfaction, and brand preference. This study used Tablet PC users as the research objects and collected empirical data through online questionnaires. Structural Equation Model (SEM) was used to validate models, and hierarchical regression was used to test the hypothesis. The results of this study showed that brand experience has a significant positive effect on brand preference, brand experience has a significant positive effect on customer satisfaction, and self-concept congruence has a positive effect on brand preference. In addition, self-concept congruence has positive effect on customer satisfaction and brand preferences. These results show that through a comprehensive brand experience, companies could enhance brand preferences and purchase intentions of customers.

Keywords: Brand Experiences, Self-Concept Congruence, Customer Satisfaction, Brand Preference

INTRODUCTION

The economy of human society is changing from commodity and service economy to experience economy. Morrison and Crane (2007) showed in their research that when consumers are purchasing products and services, they no longer focus on "purchase behavior" alone. Therefore, marketers must integrate other marketing elements, such as relationship management (Berry, 1983) and value creation (Ravald & GrÖnroos, 1996), and they must provide consumers with a purchase process experience (Pine II & Gilmore, 1998; Schmitt, 1999).

To meet the expectations of consumers in this experience economy era, the key is to understand how consumers experience brand, including any experience about the brand given by all mean to the customers, such as direct use of the product, receiving flyers of the brand, or watching a TV commercial of the brand; notably, more industries and organizations have adopted experience marketing measures to develop new products, communicate with customers, improve sales relationships, select venture partners, design a retail environment, and establish an Internet business. It is clear that more and more marketers have transferred away from traditional marketing (features-and-benefits) to customer experience creation (Schmitt, 1999). Therefore, in response to the increase in overall consumer demand, from the brand experience point of view, understanding the effect of brand experience on brand satisfaction and brand preference of consumers is a significant brand marketing strategy for business.

Schmitt (1999) first proposed the definition and measurement of brand experience. In 2009, Schmitt and two other scholars, Brakus and Zarantonello, amended the measurement scale and applied it to a research predicting consumer behavior (Zarantonello & Schmitt, 2010). However, subsequent verification remains to be further substantiated. With the increasing symbolic demands of customers in self-expression of thoughts, feelings, or attitudes, many scholars have started to study brand image, personality, and relationships with consumers (Grohmann, 2009). According to self-concept congruence, consumers define themselves through products with a particular personality to express, maintain, and strengthen their self-concept (Sirgy, 1982). Matzler, Faullant, Renzl, and Leiter (2005) considered that customers' satisfaction with their own performance (customer self-satisfaction) influences customer satisfaction in settings with high customer participation. Customers' expression of self-concept through products is a psychological process of participation. Therefore, more consistent self-concept congruence increases customer self-satisfaction. For a long time, consumer behavior studies have focused on the product itself and the symbolic meaning of consumers' through self-concept (Belk, 1988). …

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