, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 179-191

Product recalls and the moderating role of brand commitment

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Abstract

We assess attenuating and augmenting effects of brand commitment on consumer responses when product recalls occur. Consistent with our theorization, results from a laboratory experiment and an event study show that high levels of brand commitment attenuate negative consumer responses in low-severity product recalls but augment them in high-severity product recalls. Thus, while brand commitment seems to provide a reservoir of goodwill in the former case, it acts as a liability in the latter. These findings add to the extant brand and product recall literature by demonstrating that brand commitment has a complex effect on consumer responses when product recalls occur. Because product recalls are widespread, these findings also have managerial relevance.