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Perceived Authenticity of a Brand and Resulting Consumer Outcomes

Presenters Name: 
Alexandra Weidenman
Co Presenters Name: 
Primary Research Mentor: 
Jeffrey Boichuk
Secondary Research Mentor: 
11:00 - 12:15
Time of Presentation: 
2019 - 11:00am to 12:15pm
Newcomb Hall Ballroom
Presentation Type: 
Presentations Academic Category: 
Social Science
Grant Program Recipient: 
USOAR Program

For this project, we are collaborating with The Juice Laundry (TJL), a local juice and smoothie bar, to research how consumers’ perceptions of a company’s authenticity influence their spending habits. The literature suggests that two types of authenticity include authenticity as consistency and authenticity as conformity. Authenticity as consistency relates to acting in ways that are true to one’s individual morals, whereas authenticity as conformity relates to acting in ways that are true to a category. Our studies are examining how consumers respond when companies claim to be authentic in both ways. Our research methods include a video-based field experiment with customers at the point of purchase in TJL’s stores and a follow-up lab experiment to generalize our results and test possible explanations of the relationships between the variables in our model. We will analyze our data using R, a statistical programming language. This research addresses a call for papers in Organization Science on Experiments in Organizational Theory, and we are planning to submit our work to this publication. From our findings, we hope to provide sustainable food businesses with insights about how they can market their brands both authentically and successfully.