Understanding Consumer Animosity in the Politicized Global Market

About

Contextualized in the recent territorial dispute between Japan and China, this research examines consumer animosity from the perspective of transnational Chinese consumers. This study provides a multidimensional model of animosity and tests an integrative model that links cultural identification, antecedents (i.e., patriotism, nationalism, and internationalism), and moderators of consumer animosity (i.e., perceived symbolism and perceived threat). Transnational Chinese consumers’ cultural identification was found to significantly influence the mechanisms underlying their animosity against Japanese products.


Theoretical Implications

  • One of the earliest empirical investigations of the influence of cultural identification on animosity
  • Provided a more sophisticated and clearly delineated three-dimensional model of animosity
  • Tested an integrative model linking consumers’ cultural identifications, antecedents, and moderators of animosity
  • Advanced the theoretical knowledge of CA from the perspective of transnational consumers
  • Advanced the theoretical knowledge of symbolic consumption as a distinct construct from product ethnicity (Usunier & Cestre, 2007)
  • Further delineates CA as conceptually distinct from CE in that it is country specific and a stronger, more stable reaction that ethnocentric tendencies in the context of consumption

Empirical Implications

  • Provided strategic insights to help global marketers address the challenges of the politics-laden global market and the emerging transnational consumer community
  • Highlighted the importance of studying transnational consumers
  • Specific data on the consumption preferences of Chinese international students, who comprise the largest group of students studying abroad globally
  • Provided insights for countries perceived as adversary nations to China; specifically that these countries should downplay the ethnicity of their products in order to more effectively target Chinese consumers