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Buying a New Product with Inconsistent Product Reviews from Multiple Sources: The Role of Information Diagnosticity and Advertising

(Kay) Byun, Kyung-ah, Minghui Ma, Kevin Kim and Taeghyun Kang

Journal of Interactive Marketing, 2021, vol. 55, issue C, 81-103

Abstract: Product reviews are critical high-scope non-marketing cues for consumers to obtain useful product information from various perspectives. However, the effects of inconsistent reviews among multiple sources on new product sales are underexplored. Based on the cue-diagnosticity framework, this research investigates how multi-source review inconsistency (MSRI) affects purchase intention and new product sales in the context of the U.S. automobile industry when firms signal product quality through advertising as a low-scope cue. Using multi-methods of an experiment and secondary data analysis, the results show the negative effects of MSRI on purchase intention and new product sales and explain the mechanisms through information diagnosticity. Further, the findings show how advertising as a low-scope cue can mitigate the effect of multi-source inconsistency on new product sales.

Keywords: Cue diagnosticity; Multi-source review inconsistency (MSRI); New product sales; Review source helpfulness; Advertising (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.intmar.2021.01.003

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