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The Consumer Research Group includes academics with a wide range of interests and expertise across consumer behaviour, advertising, branding and market performance metrics. The group disseminates research findings through top international journals and through interdisciplinary as well as subject-specialist conferences.
We collaborate with researchers at the Universities of Zaragoza (Spain), Twente (Netherlands); North Texas (USA), South Australia and New South Wales (Australia).
The Group has attracted funding from the Academy of Marketing and the Academy of Marketing Science.
Focal research areas of the group include:
Comparing the behaviours and attitudes of multi-channel shoppers, we have established the importance of situational factors, brand loyalty and underlying attitudes as a driver of grocery shopping behaviour. Ongoing studies are mapping changes in multi-channel shopping as technology develops and matures and, in particular, how shoppers configure their multichannel shopping journeys and the factors that drive channel patronage decisions.
Extensive research on brand extensions has examined the impact of parent brand characteristics (luxury vs non-luxury), extensions type (goods extending into goods versus extending into services; vertical extensions), country (Spain, UK and Italy) and product category (cars and shoes) on consumer perceptions.
Other projects have investigated how downscale extensions impact the image of luxury and prestige brands, and the development of a decision framework for luxury brand extensions. Other projects have investigated how downscale extensions impact the image of luxury and prestige brands, and the development of a decision framework for luxury brand extensions.
Studies employ empirically-derived metrics to provide benchmarks for a brand's performance, in terms of brand size, purchase frequency and behavioural loyalty as well as for brand image and attitudinal loyalty. This has also involved analysing purchase data in large-scale consumer panels in the fast moving consumer goods sector. Other projects include creating benchmarks for the market performance of new brands, examining purchase behaviour of older customers, and analysing behavioural segments for gambling in the UK. The group have undertaken projects across a large range of product categories and in several countries.
Recent studies include patterns of cross-purchasing among arts audiences, modelling arts attendance behaviour and the use of search engine use data to forecast aggregate cinema attendance.
Other research topics include how service recovery can be delivered effectively through offline and online channels, how customers cope following a service failure, and the factors influencing customer attitudes towards cause-related marketing.
Several studies have investigated the behavioural phenomenon of multiple media use and why people choose to multitask with media. Researchers in the Group have developed The 'Polychronicity – Multiple Media Use' (P-MMU) scale: a multi-dimensional scale to measure polychronicity in the context of multiple media use.
Other research topics include regulatory mode in B2B positioning decision making, positioning strategies in industrial and B2B markets, context effects in the evaluation of business-to-business brand alliances and IT usage for enhancing trade show performance.