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Showing papers in "Journal of Consumer Research in 1992"


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the development of a values-oriented materialism scale with three components (acquisition centrality, acquisition as the pursuit of happiness, and possession defined success) is described.
Abstract: This article reviews the construct and measurement of materialism and concludes that materialism is appropriately conceptualized as a consumer value. The development of a values-oriented materialism scale with three components—acquisition centrality, acquisition as the pursuit of happiness, and possession-defined success—is described. In validation tests high scorers (compared with low scorers) desired a higher level of income, placed greater emphasis on financial security and less on interpersonal relationships, preferred to spend more on themselves and less on others, engaged in fewer voluntary simplicity behaviors, and were less satisfied with their lives.

2,861 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: A meta-analysis of pairwise relationships involving attitude toward the ad was conducted by as discussed by the authors, where correlations across studies are analyzed and reported. But the results suggest a number of methodological variables that moderate the strengths of relationships found in studies of ad attitudes.
Abstract: A meta-analysis of pairwise relationships involving attitude toward the ad was conducted. Analyses of correlations across studies are first analyzed and reported. Because significant variance across studies was found, moderator analyses were conducted to account for interstudy variance. The results suggest a number of methodological variables that moderate the strengths of relationships found in studies of ad attitudes. Analyses were also conducted to assess the robustness of the dual-mediation path model of the effects of ad attitudes. Results indicate support for the model as well as a more important role for the indirect influence of ad attitudes on brand attitudes (via brand cognitions) than that found in previous model tests.

1,010 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the influence of peers on individuals' product and brand decisions for products that range in their degree of conspicuousness is examined for comparable samples in the United States and in Thailand to assess the validity of the original framework over time and across cultural contexts.
Abstract: A replication and extension of a study performed by Bearden and Etzel are reported in this article. The influence of peers on individuals' product and brand decisions for products that range in their degree of conspicuousness is examined for comparable samples in the United States and in Thailand to assess the validity of the original framework over time and across cultural contexts. Further, the influence of the family is addressed through an examination of intergenerational influences across the two cultures. The results of the study lend support to the original theoretical approach and also provide insight into how reference-group influence may vary depending on whether the influence is exercised by a member of a peer group or by a family member.

898 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors developed a scale to identify compulsive buyers based on seven items representing specific behaviors, motivations, and feelings associated with buying significantly contributed to correctly classifying approximately 88 percent of the subjects.
Abstract: Advancements in understanding problematic behaviors require the ability to identify affected or at-risk individuals. This article reports the development of a scale to identify compulsive buyers. Seven items representing specific behaviors, motivations, and feelings associated with buying significantly contributed to correctly classifying approximately 88 percent of the subjects. Evidence indicates this screening scale is unidimensional and possesses good reliability. Validity is demonstrated by comparing members of a general consumer sample who are identified as compulsive buyers by the screener with self-identified compulsive buyers and noncompulsive consumers on several established correlates and outcomes of compulsive buying. Evidence of external validity using a separate sample is also presented.

821 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the regret and responsibility of consumers' choices between alternatives between alternatives can be systematically influenced by asking them to anticipate how they would feel if they made the wrong decision.
Abstract: It is suggested that consumers' choices between alternatives can be systematically influenced by asking them to anticipate the regret and responsibility they would feel if they made the wrong decision. Specifically, on the basis of the notion that choices of conventional or default options are associated with lower regret and responsibility, it is proposed that consumers who anticipate how they would feel if they made the wrong decision would be more likely to purchase a currently available item on sale rather than wait for a better sale and more likely to prefer a higher-priced, well-known brand over a less expensive, lesser-known brand. These propositions were supported in three studies. The findings also suggest that an error caused by selection of a lesser-known, lower-priced brand is associated with greater responsibility but less regret than an error caused by a choice of a well-known, higher-priced brand.

748 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the role of optimum stimulation level (OSL) in exploratory consumer behavior is examined, and the results of the study indicate that consumers' OSL is systematically related to curiosity-motivated consumer behaviors, variety seeking, and risk taking.
Abstract: This study examines the role of optimum stimulation level (OSL) in exploratory consumer behavior. The concept of OSL and its measurement are discussed, and the literature on exploratory consumer tendencies and their relationship with OSL is reviewed. Hypotheses are developed concerning the relationship between OSL and cognitive responses to ads, ad repetition, information search, variety seeking, decision making under risk, gambling, and innovative behavior, and these hypotheses are investigated in a series of experiments. Four well-known instruments are used to measure people's characteristic preference for stimulation, and OSL is operationalized as a weighted composite of a person's score on these scales. The results of the study indicate that consumers' OSL is systematically related to curiosity-motivated consumer behaviors, variety seeking, and risk taking.

659 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the effect of using incongruent information to improve memorability of complex marketing communications is investigated, based on research in social cognition and information processing, and a theoretical framework is developed that posits two dimensions of infongruency: relevancy and expectancy.
Abstract: Three experiments are presented that investigate the effect of using incongruent information to improve the memorability of complex marketing communications. The basic premise of the research is that incongruency is a multidimensional concept, the components of which may produce countervailing effects on memory. Drawing on research in social cognition and information processing, a theoretical framework is developed that posits two dimensions of incongruency: relevancy and expectancy. Results of the research provide empirical support for the framework and suggest implications for consumer research and the development of ads.

645 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, a graphic model is delineated that focuses on consumers' life themes (e.g., being true vs. being false) and life projects (i.e., what it means to be an educator).
Abstract: This article adopts and extends a meaning-based approach to advertising. We emphasize the consumer's perspective and seek to address important factors that motivate and shape actualized advertising meanings. A graphic model is delineated that focuses on consumers' life themes (e.g., being true vs. being false) and life projects (e.g., what it means to be an educator). The model is assessed through a phenomenological inquiry into the life stories of three individuals and their respective experiences of contemporary magazine advertisements. Findings corroborate the proposition that many actualized ad meanings are a function of the consumer's salient life projects as conjoined by life themes. Discussion focuses on the implications for advertising theory and consumer research.

601 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This article reviewed and integrated recent theories of addiction drawn from a diverse set of disciplines (consumer behavior, medicine, sociology, psychiatry, and psychology) to provide a comprehensive framework for understanding the etiology of addiction and other compulsive consumer behaviors.
Abstract: This article reviews and integrates recent theories of addiction drawn from a diverse set of disciplines—consumer behavior, medicine, sociology, psychiatry, and psychology—to provide a comprehensive framework for understanding the etiology of addiction and other compulsive consumer behaviors. Interpretive material from personal interviews with addicted and nonaddicted drug users is then used to illustrate the consciousness of addictive consumption. Two a priori themes—serial/simultaneous addictions and personal crises/role transitions—and five emergent themes—relapse, deception, dysfunctional families, suicide, and boundaries—are discussed.

534 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This article investigated how the individual difference variable of state versus action orientation moderates the pattern of relationships among constructs in the theory of reasoned action and found that subjective norms become more important as people become state oriented, whereas the relative importance of attitudes increases as people became action oriented.
Abstract: This article investigates how the individual difference variable of state versus action orientation moderates the pattern of relationships among constructs in the theory of reasoned action. State orientation refers to a low capacity for the enactment of action-related mental structures, whereas action orientation refers to a high capacity for this type of enactment. A field study was conducted in the context of consumers' self-reported usage of coupons for grocery shopping. The results showed that state versus action orientation moderates the relative importance of determinants of intentions; specifically, subjective norms become more important as people become state oriented, whereas the relative importance of attitudes increases as people become action oriented. In addition, the study showed that past behavior is a determinant of intentions to use coupons.

458 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, single-source yogurt data are used to examine whether both internal and external reference prices affect purchase decisions, and both types of variables have significant effects on purchase probabilities.
Abstract: Single-source yogurt data are used to examine whether both internal and external reference prices affect purchase decisions. Internal reference prices are memory-resident prices based on actual, fair, or other price concepts. External reference prices are observed stimuli, such as “regular prices,” that stores may display along with a sale price for comparability. Discrete choice models with variables representing the two types of reference prices are estimated, and both types of variables are found to have significant effects on purchase probabilities. This suggests that consumers may use multiple reference points in evaluating price in purchase decisions. In addition, a model using an indicator of a sale price discount explains purchase probabilities as well as one that models the actual discount, which suggests that consumers may be reacting to the indication of savings rather than to the amount of the discount.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This article used multiple perspectives and methods within a framework of critical pluralism to investigate advertising resonance and found that manipulation of resonance produces positive treatment effects in three domains: liking for the ad, brand attitude, and unaided recall of ad headlines.
Abstract: Print ads exhibit resonance when they combine wordplay with a relevant picture to create ambiguity and incongruity. This article uses multiple perspectives and methods within a framework of critical pluralism to investigate advertising resonance. Semiotic text analyses, a content analysis of contemporary magazine ads, two experiments, and phenomenological interviews combine to yield insights into the operation, prevalence, impact, and experience of resonance. Specifically, the two experiments show that manipulation of resonance produces positive treatment effects in three domains: liking for the ad, brand attitude, and unaided recall of ad headlines. These effects appear contingent on subjects' successful decoding of resonance and their tolerance for ambiguity (an individual difference variable). Implications for future research on resonance and for the use of critical pluralism in consumer advertising research are discussed.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examined how subjects' level of involvement during initial exposure to consumer trivia influences what they learn and what they subsequently come to believe and found that familiarity emerged as a key mediator of the truth effect.
Abstract: In three learning experiments we examined how subjects' level of involvement during initial exposure to consumer trivia influences what they learn and what they subsequently come to believe. Subjects rated consumer trivia statements as more true when they had been exposed to those statements earlier in the experiment. Simple repetition increased subsequent truth ratings. Moreover, when subjects processed the information during initial exposure in a less involving fashion, the effect of repetition on truth became more pronounced. Familiarity emerged as a key mediator of the truth effect. When subjects experienced an “it rings a bell” reaction, they judged the information to be more true. Finally, under low-involvement processing, the truth effect increased when subjects engaged in a processing task (rote rehearsal) that increased familiarity without increasing evaluative processing of the information.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors used a new measurement model that identifies latent (unobserved) value-system segments derived from a ranking of the LOV items and constructed a values map, which allows dimensions underlying the value system segments to be identified.
Abstract: Human values have been increasingly used as a basis for market segmentation. The list of values (LOV) is one common approach to segmentation: typically, marketers use the top-ranked value to assign consumers to segments. Although it is simple to implement, the top-rank approach to values segmentation conflicts with Rokeach's concept of an ordered value system, in which individual values are organized in the context of an overall hierarchy. This study uses a new measurement model that identifies latent (unobserved) value-system segments derived from a ranking of the LOV items. Higher-order value-system segments reflect the reality that multiple values will affect an individual's behavior. A values map is also constructed, which allows dimensions underlying the value-system segments to be identified. Data from a national survey show that the resulting value-system segments and values map have face validity consistent with the psychological structure of human values recently hypothesized by S. H. Schwartz and W. Bilsky.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors examined consumers' response to retailers' price promotions and found that consumers do not change their intentions to buy unless the promotional discount is above a threshold level, and that the threshold for a name brand is lower than that for a store brand.
Abstract: This study examines consumers' response to retailers' price promotions. It shows that consumers discount the price discounts. It also suggests that the discounting of discounts and changes in purchase intention depend on the discount level, store image, and whether the product advertised is a name brand or a store brand. The study goes one step further to investigate the existence of promotion thresholds. We use experimental data and an econometric methodology to gather empirical evidence that consumers do not change their intentions to buy unless the promotional discount is above a threshold level. This threshold point differs for name brands and store brands. Specifically, we find that the threshold for a name brand is lower than that for a store brand. In other words, stores can attract consumers by offering a small discount on name brands while a larger discount is needed for a similar effect for a store brand. The study also indicates the existence of a promotion saturation point above which the effect of discounts on changes in consumers' purchase intention is minimal. These results confirm consumers' S-shaped response to promotions.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors develop a vocabulary to describe the management of performance and the nature of consumer judgments of staged performance quality, and apply this framework to examine the issue of the quality of performances.
Abstract: This article develops a vocabulary to describe the management of performance and the nature of consumer judgments of staged performance quality. It distinguishes three kinds of performance—contractual, enacted, and dramatistic. While all marketing actions are by nature dramatistic, this article explores how marketing can obscure the traces of dramatism by reframing the performance as contractual or enacted. Alternatively, marketing may seek to emphasize a performance's dramatistic character, selecting among skill, show, thrill, or festive frames. I apply this framework to examine the issue of the quality of performances.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors examined individuals' reports about emotive experience vis-a-vis their attitudinal judgments as predictors of subsequent behavior and found that emotional variables can serve as incremental predictors in instances in which situational pressures may inhibit formation of meaningful attitudes.
Abstract: This study examines individuals' reports about emotive experience vis-a-vis their attitudinal judgments as predictors of subsequent behavior. Hypotheses are developed around the general premise that emotional reports tap information with motivational implications that need not be integrated into attitude judgments and thus should supplement attitude in prediction. The hypotheses are tested with a unique data base that allows categorization of subjects on the basis of diverse levels of prior experience and features naturally occurring behavior over a 12-month period as the criterion variable. The data support the premise that emotional variables can serve as incremental predictors in instances in which situational pressures may inhibit formation of meaningful attitudes. Also, the data suggest that emotional reports may furnish some unique information about what perpetuates a behavior. Implications for further integration of emotional experience into consumer research are discussed.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, photographic slides and videotapes, used as environmental simulations in testing a theory of crowding, have been shown to have ecological validity in the study of consumers' evaluation of the service setting.
Abstract: In the study of consumers' evaluation of the service setting, laboratory experiments using environmental simulations provide researchers with a level of control that can otherwise be difficult to achieve in field studies. This article demonstrates that photographic slides and videotapes, used as environmental simulations in testing a theory of crowding, have ecological validity. The same theoretical model is tested with data obtained from a field quasi-experimental study and with data from a laboratory study that used photographic slides and videotapes to simulate the service setting. Conditions that may constrain the applications of various kinds of environmental simulations in consumer research on services are also discussed.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Results from a second study provide substantive support for the claim that increasing prior knowledge is accompanied by an increase in both limits of the acceptable price range.
Abstract: This article assesses whether differences in prior knowledge result in differences in (1) price acceptability and (2) the extent to which different types of information are examined. Using a personal computer-based methodology, subjects who varied in their prior product knowledge provided price responses, and the time they spent examining various kinds of information was measured. Acceptable price-range end-points (price limits) were found to be lowest for low-knowledge subjects. Further, the extent to which price and related extrinsic information was examined was found to be lowest for moderately knowledgeable subjects. Results from a second study provide substantive support for the claim that increasing prior knowledge is accompanied by an increase in both limits of the acceptable price range.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors provide a theoretical rationale based on extant literature as to which imagery content variables may influence imagery and how imagery may, in turn, affect key purchase-related variables such as attitudes and behavioral intentions.
Abstract: Consumer researchers seem to believe that the use of imagery increases recall, enhances attitude toward the brand, and positively affects behavioral intentions. Yet few empirical investigations of imagery effects have been conducted in a consumer-behavior context. In this article, we provide a theoretical rationale based on extant literature as to which imagery content variables may influence imagery and how imagery may, in turn, affect key purchase-related variables such as attitudes and behavioral intentions. In addition, the results of two empirical investigations are presented. These studies address how self versus other relatedness and situation plausibility affect the degree of reported imagery and subsequently affect ad and brand evaluations. The results of the two studies show that the focal character and plausibility of the imagined scene influence the degree of imagery evoked by the message. Focal character is shown to directly affect attitude toward the ad. In addition, we find that imagery directly influences attitude toward the ad but has no effect on attitude toward the brand or behavioral intentions.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors examined how motivation moderates the impact of central and peripheral processing on the formation of brand attitudes and purchase intentions in an advertising pretest setting, and found that increasing motivation to evaluate an advertised brand through the manipulation of consumer processing goals (e.g., increasing the perceived value of a product versus the perceived quality of the product) increases the impact on brand attitudes.
Abstract: This study examined how motivation moderates the impact of central and peripheral processing on the formation of brand attitudes and purchase intentions in an advertising pretest setting. The results indicate that increasing motivation to evaluate an advertised brand through the manipulation of consumer processing goals (1) increases the impact of central brand processing on brand attitudes and decreases the impact of a peripheral cue on brand attitudes, primarily by influencing the strengths of the relations among these constructs rather than by influencing their mean levels, (2) has no effect on the impact of the peripheral cue on brand cognitions, and (3) increases the impact of brand attitudes on purchase intentions by strengthening the attitude-intention relation and by increasing brand attitudes directly. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This paper investigated whether consumers exhibit asymmetry (i.e., different sensitivity) to negative (loss) and positive (gain) differences between the reference price and the purchase price in brand choice and purchase quantity decisions.
Abstract: The study investigates whether consumers exhibit asymmetry (i.e., different sensitivity) to negative (“loss”) and positive (“gain”) differences between the reference price and the purchase price in brand choice and purchase quantity decisions. Using panel data for two frequently purchased products with three brands in each product category, we find that consumers loyal to a brand (“loyals”) respond to gain and loss with the same sensitivity in brand choice decisions. However, consumers not loyal to any brand (“switchers”) respond more strongly to gains than to losses. In purchase quantity decisions, brand-loyal consumers are found to respond asymmetrically to gains and losses, but the direction of the asymmetry depends on whether the decision is made before or after the household inventory reaches a stock-out level (i.e., the level at which the household inventory needs to be replenished). When the decision is made after a stock-out, brand-loyal consumers are more responsive to a gain in the price of their favorite brand than to a loss. In contrast, when the quantity decision is made before a stock-out, loyals are more sensitive to a loss than to a gain. In only two of the six brands examined do we find evidence of asymmetry in switchers' quantity decisions. In both cases, switchers respond more strongly to a price loss than to a gain, regardless of whether the purchase decision is made before or after a stock-out.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This paper explored how processing based on such schemas interacts with consumer expectations prior to the trial of a new product and influences disconfirmation judgments and product evaluations following the trial. But they focused on the product-category schema level, rather than the product attribute level.
Abstract: Recent research has shown that processing based on the product-category schemas of consumers can influence the manner in which consumers evaluate products. This article presents a series of studies that explore how processing based on such schemas interacts with consumer expectations prior to the trial of a new product and influences disconfirmation judgments and product evaluations following the trial. An initial study finds that, when attributes included in the description of a new product are very discrepant from a prior category schema, consumers may switch schemas in forming pretrial expectations. A second study finds that more negative product evaluations following the trial may result when consumers' experience with a product during the trial is very different from schema expectations, compared with the situation in which the product matches schema expectations. A third study demonstrates that disconfirmation judgments and posttrial evaluations may occur through processing at the product-category schema level, rather than through processing at the product attribute level.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors compared actual supermarket purchases made by consumers over a seven-month period with the choice decisions collected in one sitting in a laboratory simulation, and found that the simulated data were reasonably valid in predicting market shares and promotion sensitivity for brands across consumers.
Abstract: Actual supermarket purchases made by consumers over a seven-month period are compared with the choice decisions collected in one sitting in a laboratory simulation. The laboratory simulation was designed to mimic the original market environment. Although there were systematic biases in predictions of true purchase behavior from the simulated data, the “compressed simulations” were reasonably valid in predicting market shares and promotion sensitivity for brands across consumers.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This article explored consumers' information-seeking behavior during the categorization of new products that differed in varying degrees from preexisting category expectations, and found that subjects manage the cognitive effort of search by limiting the breadth of search.
Abstract: Consumers are confronted with hundreds of new products each year, yet little is known about how these new products are integrated into existing knowledge structures. Depending on the new products' similarity or dissimilarity to categories stored in memory, consumers' information search may be influenced. In this study, consumers' information-seeking behavior was explored during the categorization of new products that differed in varying degrees from preexisting category expectations. Results suggest that subjects manage the cognitive effort of search by limiting the breadth of search. However, an inverted-U relationship exists between discrepancy and depth of search. Thus, it appears that, at a moderate level of discrepancy, subjects may examine a relevant set of attributes in greater depth rather than search for information on a broad range of attributes. With high discrepancy, however, it appears that subjects try alternative internal strategies rather than search for more information.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors present three studies offering evidence for the positive role of casual interpersonal touch on consumer behavior and provide initial support for the view that tactile stimulation in various consumer behavior situations enhances the positive feeling for and evaluation of both the external stimuli and the touching source.
Abstract: Tactile behavior is a basic communication form as well as an expression of interpersonal involvement. This article presents three studies offering evidence for the positive role of casual interpersonal touch on consumer behavior. More specifically, it provides initial support for the view that tactile stimulation in various consumer behavior situations enhances the positive feeling for and evaluation of both the external stimuli and the touching source. Further, customers touched by a requester tend to comply more than customers in no-touch conditions. Implications for consumer behavior theory and research are discussed.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors proposed that what consumers buy can be systematically influenced by how much they buy and found that consumers were more likely to select their regular brands when purchasing more containers of yogurt on a given occasion.
Abstract: We propose that what consumers buy can be systematically influenced by how much they buy. We hypothesize that, as the number of items purchased in a category on a shopping occasion increases, a consumer is more likely to select product variants (e.g., yogurt flavors) that s/he does not usually purchase. We used yogurt scanner data to support this hypothesis. This study also revealed that consumers were more likely to select their regular brands when purchasing more containers of yogurt on a given occasion. A laboratory experiment showed that this reflects the combined impact of purchase quantity and product-display format (i.e., the by-brand display of yogurt in supermarkets) on consumer choice.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors developed and tested a model of the effects of perceived consumption visibility and superordinate group influence on new product intention formation and found that perceived visibility of consumption significantly affects consumers' predictions of normative outcomes (i.e., social approval from referents).
Abstract: The social context of new product adoption behavior is a key aspect of the diffusion of innovations. Yet little is known about the process by which social contextual factors influence individual adoption decisions. This research develops and tests a model of the effects of perceived consumption visibility and superordinate group influence on new product intention formation. A structural equation model is used in an experimental design to provide a comprehensive view of variable interdependencies and to incorporate measurement error. Key findings indicate that (1) perceived visibility of consumption significantly affects consumers' predictions of normative outcomes (i.e., social approval from referents) and (2) superordinate group influence has a direct effect on consumers' perceptions of consumption visibility and expectations of both personal (i.e., intrinsically valued product benefits) and normative outcomes from early adoption. The results have important implications for understanding the role of consumption symbols as mechanisms for social differentiation and integration.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors examined consumers' subjective value of time and found that respondents incorporate both wage rates and perceived enjoyment of price-comparison shopping into their subjective values of time.
Abstract: The value that consumers place on time spent in price-comparison shopping is central to the economics of information theory and models of consumers' search behavior. Yet few empirical studies have examined consumers' subjective value of time. Building on Gary Becker's work, this article presents two tests of a model of the subjective value of time. In an effort to explain consumers' subjective value of time while they are price-comparison shopping, the model introduces perceived enjoyment of shopping as a new explanatory variable. The findings reveal that respondents incorporate both wage rates and perceived enjoyment of price-comparison shopping into their subjective value of time.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This paper developed a framework for four levels of subjective comprehension on the basis of an elaboration criterion and found that these levels differ in their relation to ad perceptions, attitudes, and memory.
Abstract: Two fundamental orientations toward message comprehension have appeared in advertising research: the traditional objective view, which applies an accuracy criterion to conceptualize and evaluate comprehension, and the subjective view, which applies other criteria related to the individual comprehender and the actual experience of the message. This article develops a framework for four levels of subjective comprehension on the basis of an elaboration criterion. Comprehension levels are hypothesized to differ in their relations to ad perceptions, attitudes, and memory. Results from an empirical study provide initial support for the framework, including new theoretical insights and explanatory ability beyond the objective orientation. Discussion focuses on implications for advertising theory and consumer research.