The betrayal puzzle: Unraveling the connection between inauthenticity, corporate wrongdoing and brand betrayal with avoidance and reparation

Huma Ittefaq, Naeem Akhtar, Umar Iqbal Siddiqi, Tahir Islam, Aleksandra Kuzior

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Based on the Stimulus-Organism-Response (S–O-R) theory and attachment theory, this study investigates the proposed conceptual model of corporate wrongdoing and brand inauthenticity to elucidate individual responses. In this framework, stimuli show brand inauthenticity and corporate wrongdoing, prompting negative cognitive and emotional responses among individuals. These responses, affected by customers' attachment to the brand, are the organisms in the SOR model. Attachment theory advocates that customers form emotional bonds with brands akin to human relationships. Perceived brand betrayal, an emotional response, is a critical organism in this conceptual framework, curtailing the heresy of customers' attachment to the brand. This brand betrayal perception catalyzes brand avoidance and demand for reparation. Data were collected from Chinese consumers of luxury fashion brands and tested proposed relationships using PLS-SEM in PLS-Smart 4.0. The findings showed that brand inauthenticity and corporate wrongdoing positively predict perceived brand betrayal, significantly leading to brand avoidance and demand for reparation. Overall, the SOR model, mutual with the lens of attachment theory, sheds light on the complex dynamics of customer responses to brand inauthenticity and corporate wrongdoing, illuminating the process of brand avoidance and the subsequent call for reparation. This study contributes to the theory and practice.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103597
JournalJournal of Retailing and Consumer Services
Volume76
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Brand avoidance
  • Brand betrayal
  • Brand inauthenticity
  • Corporate wrongdoing
  • Reparation
  • Rumination

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