Bill Ross and Co-authors Receive Prestigious Lehmann Award

Bill Ross, ING Global Professor, and his colleagues, Sanjay Puligadda (Miami University) and Rajdeep Grewal (Penn State University) were awarded the coveted Lehmann Award for their article, “Individual Differences in Brand Schematicity,” Journal of Marketing Research (February 2012). The Lehmann Award (in honor of Donald R. Lehmann, Columbia University) is given annually to the best dissertation-based paper (within the past 2 years) in either of the two premier marketing journals, Journal of Marketing and Journal of Marketing Research. The article was Puligadda’s dissertation, which he completed at Penn State with Ross and Grewal as his advisers.

If you had decided to buy a camera, would you focus on which brands the store carried? Or, would you focus on the characteristics of the different cameras the store had in stock?

This paper suggests that if you are high in brand schematicity, you would be more likely to attend to the different brands the store carried, whereas if you were low in brand schematicity you would be more likely to attend to the characteristics of the cameras the store carried.

A schema is a set of expectations a person has about what will happen in a certain situation. Most folks, for example, have a schema for what they will experience in a fast food restaurant. Schematicity is the tendency on the part of consumers to process information using specific schema. People who are high in brand schematicity are likely to process products in terms of brands, not product characteristics, whereas people who are low in brand schematicity are likely to process products in terms of product characteristics not brands.

Don’t confuse brand schematicity with brand loyalty. Someone who is high in brand schematicity does not necessarily have a preference for a certain brand; instead, they have a preference to organize their thinking by brands.

In this article, Ross, Puligadda, and Grewal built a theoretical basis for brand schematicity and report on three studies that develop measures of brand schematicity; three studies that consider brand schematicity in the context of associated constructs and establish its predictive validity; and a final study that reveals that a consumer’s brand schematicity influences brand extension evaluations.

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