Research projects (co)funded by the Slovenian Research and Innovatian Agency

Research project

Member of University of Ljubljana

School of Economics and Business




Navigating Brand Preference through Consumers Stereotypes


1.3.2018 - 28.2.2018

Range on year

0,91 FTE


Vesna Žabkar

Research Organisation

Social sciences/Economics

Research Organisation


Stereotypes capture the cognitive dimension of social perception and stereotyping involves an act of categorization whereby people assign characteristics to an individual belonging to a stereotyped group. A substantial body of social psychology research shows that stereotyping impacts perceptions, evaluations and behavior. In a marketing context, three distinct kinds of stereotypes are expected to influence consumer behavior. These involve socially shared and oversimplified sets of beliefs about the characteristics of (a) typical users of a certain brand (brand user stereotype), (b) different countries and their people (country-of-origin stereotype), and (c) different brands (brand stereotype). There are previous studies showing the impact of stereotypes on consumer perceptions and behavior. However, a fundamental shortcoming of extant consumer research on stereotyping is that the roles of different kinds of stereotypes in impacting brand evaluation and choice are invariably investigated in isolation of each other, which is problematic. Against this background and drawing from the rich body of literature on stereotyping, social psychology and consumer research, this project pursues four main research objectives, which will be realized across five studies:

  • To answer the question how the brand user stereotype, the country-of-origin stereotype, and the brand stereotype are related and influence perceived risk and perceived value as key intervening variables that (partially or fully) mediate the effects of the different stereotypes on consumer decision-making and behavior.
  • To investigate a range of brand- and consumer-level moderators imposing potential boundary conditions on the aforementioned effects
  • To assess the cross-national stability of the interplay and content of the different consumer stereotypes and their impact on consumer behavior.
  • To generate in-depth insights into whether the different stereotypes influence consumer perceptions, information processing, and behavior in concert or whether one stereotype dominates while the others are less salient or even inhibited.


The phases of the project and their realization

Phase Realization
1st phase: Development of conceptual framework and methods In progress
2nd phase: Interrelationships between and relative predictive ability of different stereotypes In progress
3rd phase: Moderating influences
4th phase: Replication in a developing/emerging market setting
5th phase: Activation and inhibition of stereotypes
6th phase: Attention to alternative stereotypes
7th phase: Publication and dissemination

Citations for bibliographic records

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