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TITLE: The impact of mood on Sport Celebrity credibility evaluation Authors: Dr. R.Venkatesakumar Reader Department of Management Studies Pondicherry University Pondicherry 605014. India. Email: [email protected] Mobile: 9894240012 Phone: 91-413-2654798 Dr.S. Sundar Associate Professor Bharathidasan Institute of Management (BIM) BHEL Complex Tiruchirappalli 620014 India. Email: [email protected] Mobile: 9443318296 Phone: 91-431-2520796
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The impact of mood on Sport Celebrity credibility evaluation
AbstractCelebrity endorsement is one of the techniques increasingly adopted by marketers. The object of this study is to examine whether the mood states of the consumer manipulated through exposure to information on team performance and individual performance of the sports endorser (cricketer) impact on the consumer evaluation of the sports endorser as a celebrity. To investigate and test the hypotheses a
four group post test only randomized experiment was designed. Results indicate a mood congruent assessment of the celebrity by the participants. Key-words Celebrities, product endorsement, performance, mood, celebrity evaluation.. 1. Introduction Celebrity endorsement is one of the powerful tools adopted by companies to cut through the clutter, successfully compete for the consumers attention and consolidate their brands in the competitive market. Celebrities are a common feature in the contemporary marketplace, often becoming the face or image of brands they endorse. By pairing a brand with a celebrity endorser, the marketer is able to leverage unique and positive secondary brand associations from a celebrity and gain consumer awareness. transfer positive associations tied to the celebrity onto the brand. build brand image and ultimately enhance the endorsed brand's equity (Keller, 2008). Celebrity endorsers may serve in the role of spokesperson on behalf of the company, expert in the product field, or as a model to which the consumer base aspires (Seno and Lukas, 2007). The fast paced emergence of media channels for sports like ESPN, STAR, TEN, SETMAX, and NEO on cable TV channels and on the Internet has driven marketers to explore venues to use celebrity sportspersons to endorse their products. Marketers are spending millions in endorsement deals each year to associate their products or brands with some of the biggest names in sport (Byrne et al., 2003; Harris, 2008; Thomaselli, 2008). Researchers opine that the Page | 2
popularity of celebrity athletes would benefit brands, creating positive associations, contributing to brand name recognition and creating meaning for even the most ordinary products (Miciak, 1994; Stevens et al., 2003; Liu et al., 2007). Because of the disparities of the Indian consumer base in terms of religion, ethnicity, value systems and in income levels, marketers in India have tended to use celebrity endorsers in their advertisements to cut across these differences to draw consumer attention and are investing millions of rupees on celebrity advertising (Khatri, 2006). Cricket is the most popular sport in India and cricketers enjoy huge fan following and media attention. Cricketers have therefore been a natural choice for marketers and they are now seen endorsing multiple brands. For instance, one of the strongest celebrity endorsers is cricketer Sachin Tendulkar who is an icon for Indian youth and endorses many successful brands like Pepsi, Coca Cola, Boost, Aviva Life Insurance, TVS, Britannia Biscuits, Visa and Airtel. The use of cricketers as celebrity endorsers in advertising is not free of risk as the performance levels of the cricketer or the team to which he belongs may impact on the mood of the consumer. Empirical mood research has addressed the relation between mood and mental constructs such as perception (Avramova et al., 2010), attitude (Howard and Barry, 1994; Walther and Grigoriadis, 2004; Fedorikhin and Cole, 2004), memory (Lee and Sternthal, 1999; Sar et al., 2010) information processing (Cote, 2001) and consumer judgments (Forgas and Ciarrochi, 2001) . Our review of literature has revealed that the effect of mood on celebrity endorser evaluation has not been examined. The objective of this study is to examine whether the mood states of the consumer manipulated through exposure to information on team performance and individual performance of the sports endorser (cricketer) impact on the consumer evaluation of the sports endorser as a celebrity. In the consumer behavior literature, mood effects have been identified to emerge on service encounters, point-of-purchase stimuli and communications (Gardner, 1985). In particular, this paper is to investigate the impact of mood on sports celebrity endorser credibility evaluation by consumers.
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2. Theoretical background and Research Hypotheses Mood effects The term mood has been defined in several ways by researchers. Moods are defined as mild, pervasive, and generalized affective states (Isen, 1984) that are subjectively perceived by individuals. Gardner (1985) views that moods are more transient than other feeling states such as personality dispositions and enduring global attitudes, and they are less intense and attentiongetting than emotions. Mood is most often defined as a uni-dimensional, bipolar phenomenon that ranges from positive to negative. For example, Clark and Isen (1982) define "feeling states" (i.e., moods) as "thinking positive (or negative) thoughts." Another popular view is that mood can be described as two independent bipolar dimensions. Researchers have generally attempted to study mood effects by using a mood manipulation to induce a "positive" or "negative" affective state in experimental subjects. One school of researchers have thus taken a backdrop view of mood that is, it is seldom consciously experience by people and it is a formless backdrop against which events are experienced (Luomala and Laaksonen, 2000) . Moods operate at the automatic level, biasing the use of memory, perceptions, judgments and evaluations. These automatic processes have been studied by Bower (1981) as the congruence effects of moods. Mood Congruence Mood congruency refers to a match in valence between a person's mood and his or her thoughts. In general, mood states often have been found to influence evaluations, judgments, and behaviors in mood congruent directions, such that people in positive moods are likely to have positive cognitive changes in their evaluations, expectations, and actions (Berkowitz, 1987) while negative moods influence subjects' evaluations in a negative way (Isen and Shalker, 1982). The mood-congruent judgment effect occurs when mood-congruent thoughts, such as those of causes, attributes, or outcomes, seem more applicable or likely than comparable non-mood-congruent thoughts. For example, a person in a positive mood will look forward to a sunny day for a picnic than a person in a negative mood, because sunny weather is congruent with the positive mood. Page | 4
Marketers adopt this in practice when they refrain from airing their commercials on new news channels because they feel that the sad feelings induced by bad news may affect the evaluation of their (fun) product. This avoidance of bad feelings in the context of advertising is founded on the mood-congruency hypothesis (Bower, 1981). Mood congruency in this context means that consumers will be biased in the direction of the prevailing mood, that is, sad consumers will judge the product more unfavorably than happy consumers will. Although, in the field of mood research a variety of moods are recognized, such as anxious and angry moods, the present study concentrates on positive and negative moods. It is to be noted that shifts in mood states occur routinely, easily and swiftly, and moods can easily and simply be created (Park and Banaji, 2000). Researchers are now paying considerable attention to the effects of subjective mood states on various aspects of consumer behavior as they would like to assess it influence and impact on consumers. From previous research, through a wide variety of mood manipulation experiments it is evident that consumers with positive moods have better recall of a message stimulus (Gardner 1985), have better recall of a brand name (Lee and Sternthal 1999), evaluate message arguments more favourably (Batra and Stayman, 1990), are easier to influence (Gierl and Bambauer, 2005) and react positively to a salesperson who has conveyed positive feelings, and are willing to pay more for the products endorsed by this person (Puccinelli, 2006). It is evident that the persuasive impact of marketing messages is greater if the consumer targeted is in a happy and positive mood. It implies that positive mood states are related to greater advertising effectiveness. Empirical research based on the mood congruency model also supports the idea that negative or positive moods created by one event can color unrelated consumer judgments ( Fedorikhin and Cole, 2004). Based on the preceding discussions, consumers' moods are expected to bias their evaluations of sports celebrity endorsers in a mood-congruent direction. However, this issue has not been empirically investigated. Marketers face the challenge of getting the consumers attention due to the plethora of competitive advertising and the fact that they do not know whether the consumer has recognized the need for his product. In such situations, marketers have resorted to celebrity endorsements as Page | 5
an attention getting device. Sports celebrities are widely used in product advertising to drive sales, by improving consumers product recall and positively influencing their brand choice behavior (Bush et al., 2004; Carlson and Donavan, 2008). Sports celebrity endorsers provide a human context which consumers can choose to identify with, thereby making it easier for them to project the desired image (Allenschaefer and Keillor, 1997). celebrity endorsers should be credibility evaluated by consumers. It is imperative that such
Celebrity credibility evaluation Sport Celebrity credibility evaluations can be influenced by context. In this experimental research study we concentrate on the influence that the mental state of the consumer has on the evaluation of the sports celebrity. More precisely, we concentrate on the mental state that a person is in, prior to exposure to the medium content (antecedent state). Mood is considered as an antecedent state because a mood can be present before the consumer is exposed to the celebrity endorser presented in the advertisement (Burke and Edell 1989). The use of sports celebrities like cricketers in advertisements as an attention getting device is not without potential risks. For instance, previous research has shown that negative information of the endorsers image due to his unethical/negative behaviors can tarnish the image of the brand endorsed by him (Till and Shrimp, 1998, White et al., 2008). We explore in this research another disadvantage of using the cricketing celebrity, that is, his or his teams continued poor performance and whether this will lead to poor evaluation of the celebritys credibility as the consumer in a negative mood is likely to evaluate him in a mood congruent direction negatively. The selection of celebrity endorsers has been viewed with strategic intent by marketers as the choice could make or break their brands. Researchers have attempted to assist practitioners through developing models to help in the selection of endorsers. Four models are popularly cited for celebrity endorser selection Source Credibility model (Hovland et al., 1953), Source Attractiveness model ( Mcguire, 1985), Product Match up hypothesis (Forkan, 1980) and Meaning transfer model (McCracken, 1989). Ohanian (1990) has after extensive literature Page | 6
review, on the basis of the first two models developed a tri-component celebrity endorser scale measuring the three dimensions of trustworthiness, expertise and attractiveness. The assumption is that the effectiveness of the endorser depends on his ratings across these three dimensions. A recent meta-analysis has revealed that the traits of celebrities that have been investigated the most are expertise, credibility, trustworthiness and attractiveness of the celebrity endorser (Amos et al., 2008). Indian marketers have chosen to popularly employ cricketers for endorsing their products given the massive following for the sport in this country. Cricketers and their teams while performing at their best to gain reputation and popularity are also susceptible to poor performance patches in the careers. It is likely that such variances in performances of the sports endorser (cricketer) can lead to the consumer to being in two bipolar mood states positive and negative. One of the robust effects of mood is on evaluation. The current research aims to assess the effect of such antecedent mood states on the assessment of the credibility of the sport celebrity endorser. Individuals in positive-mood states have been shown to evaluate stimuli more positively than individuals in neutral or negative mood states. This experiment also tests whether mood states appear to bias celebrity endorser evaluation in a mood congruent direction. The above discussion leads us to the following hypotheses which are tested in this study: H1: There is a significant difference in evaluation of celebrity between consumers in positive mood and in negative mood states, impacted by the good team performances H2: There is a significant difference in evaluation of celebrity between consumers in positive mood and in negative mood states, impacted by the poor team performances H3: Good individual performances will put consumers in a positive mood and they will evaluate the celebrity favorably H4: Poor individual performances will put consumers in a negative mood and they will evaluate the celebrity unfavorably. Page | 7
3. Methodology Experimental design and participants To bring out the influence of the celebrity endorsers individual performances versus the team performance, on their credibility evaluations, an experimental design was developed. This process aimed at bringing out how the mood affected the evaluation of the endorser based on his individual performance as well as team performance. To investigate and test the hypotheses a four group post test only randomized experiment was designed. A 2 (team positive performance/ negative performance) X 2 (individual positive performance/ negative performance) mixed factorial design was used to test the celebrity evaluation of two leading cricketers. Mood has been manipulated through this 2 x 2 design and celebrity credibility evaluation is the measured variable. A total of 205 postgraduate Management students from two Indian universities (30% female, average age 23 years) volunteered to participate in the experiment. They were randomly assigned to the four betweensubjects conditions. Materials In order to generate stimuli for the experiment, we had to identify a celebrity in cricket who is popular in India. Dubey and Agrawal (2011) have done a celebrity assessment of Bollywood stars and cricketers in India; Sachin Tendulkar had secured the highest Q score of 65 and was chosen for the current study on this basis. The mood manipulation was sought to be achieved through showing visuals and news clippings in the form of a booklet which contained details and reviews of the cricketers individual performances and the teams performance and videos in which both the individual and team performances were good and poor. The data, reviews and videos were collected from leading newspapers, magazines and television channel websites. These stimuli were pretested on a sample of 18 men and 12 women students similar to those who participated in the main
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Advertisement featuring the cricketer was shown for celebrity credibility
evaluation, after the mood manipulation was achieved.
Procedure Participants were randomly assigned to the four groups. The first set of 45 respondents (Group I) were given a booklet with the articles to be read and shown videos of Team Indias good performances. They were then asked to answer Part I of the instrument which contained the measures for the individual mood related questions. A television commercial was then shown featuring Sachin Tendulkar and they were asked to given their responses to Part II which contained the source credibility scale measures for the endorser. The 50 participants in Group II were given a booklet with articles to read and shown videos of Team Indias poor performances. They were asked to then answer the questions in Part I. The advertisement featuring Sachin Tendulkar was shown and their ratings of the endorser were recorded in Part II of the instrument. The process was repeated with the next two set of participants (Group III -60 participants & Group IV - 50 participants), with the following changes: the respondents were given a booklet with articles to be read and were shown the visuals of the individual performance of Sachin Tendulkar good performances were viewed by Group III and poor performances by Group IV. Then the respondents are requested to fill Part I of the instrument, shown the TV commercial and asked to rate the celebrity endorser in the advertisement in Part II. Measures A three-item Likert scale that measures respondent mood to the stimuli was used. The respondents were then asked to evaluate the endorsers using the fifteen-item bi-polar adjective scale developed by Ohanian (1990) to assess source credibility.
4. Results The participants were asked to register their mood on the three item Likert scale (Part I of the instrument) after they were shown the videos and given the articles to read. A one-way ANOVA of the responses was performed and the results are found to be significant (F=50.584, sig. Page | 9
=0.000) which indicates that the participants who were shown positive stimuli (team/player) were in a positive mood and the participants who were shown negative stimuli (team/player) registered a negative mood. The results of the one-way ANOVA are given in Table 1 below. Table 1: Anova results for mood manipulation Std. Deviation .89317 .90851 .57364 .86651 1.06463 F= 50.584 (Sig= 0.000)
Average of mood N item scale TEAM POSITIVE 45 TEAM NEGATIVE 50 PLAYER POSITIVE PLAYER NEGATIVE Total 60 50 205
Mean 1.9481 3.2667 1.8111 3.2533 2.5480
F Ratio (Sig)
The collected responses were analyzed through a 2 2 multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) using team performance (positive and negative) and individual performance (positive and negative) as the independent variables and respondents evaluation of the source credibility of the celebrity, which consists of three dimensions attractiveness, trustworthiness and expertise, as the dependent variables, was performed. The multivariate results are summarized in the following table: Table 2: Multivariate test for Source credibility evaluation
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Value Pillai's Trace Wilks' Lambda Hotelling's Trace .966 .034 28.789
Hypothesi s df Error df Sig. 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 3.000 team_pla * 199.000 .000 199.000 .000 199.000 .000 199.000 .000 199.000 .015 199.000 .015 199.000 .015 199.000 .015 199.000 .035 199.000 .035 .035 199.000 199.000 .035
Roy's Largest 1.910E3 28.789 a Root Level Pillai's Trace .051 3.592a [Team / Wilks' Lambda .949 3.592a Player] Hotelling's .054 3.592a Trace Roy's Largest .054 3.592a Root State Pillai's Trace .051 3.910 [Positive / Wilks' Lambda .950 3.930 Negative] Hotelling's .052 3.939 Trace Roy's Largest .037 3.939 Root team_pla * Pillai's Trace .002 .140a pos_neg Wilks' Lambda .998 .140a Hotelling's Trace .002 .140a Roy's Largest .002 .140a Root a. Exact statistic b. Design: Intercept + team_pla + pos_neg + pos_neg
199.000 .936 199.000 .936 199.000 .936 199.000 .936
In particular, test of between subject effects showed significant difference on expertise dimension of the source credibility. The participants who were shown positive team performances stimuli and who reported to be in a positive mood showed significantly higher evaluations of the credibility of the endorser on the expertise dimension [= 4.2311, = 0.74828 ] than who showed with negative team performance stimuli [= 4.0920, = 0.97244], [F= 6.184, Sig= 0.013]. Page | 11
A similar result was obtained for the respondents who were shown players good and poor performances. It is found that the respondents who showed players positive performances, register significantly higher evaluations of the endorser on the expertise dimension [= 3.9567, = 0.81587], and lower evaluations on the expertise dimension when they were in a negative mood [= 3.6680, = 0.92081], [F= 4.364, Sig= 0.046]. These results are in support of the all the hypotheses formulated in the study.
Table-3 Tests of Between-Subjects Effects
Source Corrected Model
Dependent Variable SATTRAC T STRUST SEXPERT SATTRAC T STRUST SEXPERT
Type III Sum of Squares df .475a 1.401b 8.365c 2229.921 3089.329 3223.922 .451 1.166 6.184 .041 .306 4.320 .000 .004 .284 119.820 137.128 3 3 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 201 201
Mean Square .158 .467 2.788 2229.921 3089.329 3223.922 .451 1.166 6.184 .041 .306 4.320 .000 .004 .284 .596 .682
F .266 .685 2.816 3.741E 3 4.528E 3 3.256E 3 .757 1.710 6.245 .068 .448 4.364 .000 .005 .286
Sig. .850 .562 .040 .000 .000 .000 .385 .193 .013 .794 .504 .046 .983 .943 .593
Level [Team Player] State [Positive Negative] Level * State
SATTRAC /T STRUST SEXPERT SATTRAC /T STRUST SEXPERT SATTRAC T STRUST SEXPERT SATTRAC T STRUST
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Dependent Type III Sum Mean Variable of Squares df Square F Sig. SEXPERT 199.029 201 .990 Total SATTRAC 2378.560 205 T STRUST 3254.240 205 SEXPERT 3453.880 205 Corrected SATTRAC 120.296 204 Total T STRUST 138.530 204 SEXPERT 207.394 204 a. R Squared = .004 (Adjusted R Squared = -.011) b. R Squared = .010 (Adjusted R Squared = -.005) c. R Squared = .040 (Adjusted R Squared = .026) Source Lower evaluation of the endorser was observed when the term performance was high, but the individual performance was low. Table -4 Descriptive Statistics
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Level SATTRAC TEAM T
State Positive Negative Total PLAYE Positive R Negative Total Total Positive Negative Total STRUST TEAM Positive Negative Total PLAYE Positive R Negative Total Total Positive Negative Total SEXPERT TEAM Positive Negative Total PLAYE Positive R Negative Total Total Positive Negative Total
Mean 3.2533 3.2840 3.2695 3.3500 3.3760 3.3618 3.3086 3.3300 3.3190 4.0133 3.9440 3.9768 3.8700 3.7840 3.8309 3.9314 3.8640 3.8985 4.2311 4.0920 4.1579 3.9567 3.6680 3.8255 4.0743 3.8800 3.9795
Std. Deviation .83818 .77522 .80147 .70024 .78936 .73870 .76008 .77973 .76791 .70890 .89992 .81155 .78876 .88787 .83245 .75541 .89302 .82405 .74828 .97244 .87173 .81587 .92081 1.09347 .91704 1.09175 1.00828
N 45 50 95 60 50 110 105 100 205 45 50 95 60 50 110 105 100 205 45 50 95 60 50 110 105 100 205
However, it should be noted that the attractive dimension of source credibility received lower evaluations across the groups, who were showed positive or negative stimuli [team or player] and trust dimension of source credibility has been given higher evaluations by the participants across the treatment groups.
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Our research experiment has broadened the theoretical domain used in understanding the process of celebrity evaluation by considering the issue of evaluation within the context of mood states of the consumer. Though marketers assume that the associative link between the brand and the celebrity can transfer positive feelings about the celebrity to the endorsed brand, our research show that a negative mood state, based on lower individual performance, can significantly lower the credibility evaluation of the sports celebrity.
Previous research suggests that evaluations of objects or ideas will be consistent with ones mood. Consistent with the earlier findings, this experiment also has shown that mood can influence the evaluation of the endorser in a mood congruent direction. The results of our study indicate that evaluation of the endorser on the expertise dimension happens more positively when the participant was in a positive mood and is significantly less when he was in a negative mood. This study demonstrates the importance of constantly tracking sport celebrity performances as the team or individual performance (high/low) of sports celebrities is having an impact on the source credibility evaluation on the expertise dimension alone by consumers in the market. A possible explanation for this phenomenon may be that performance in the sport is expressed as expertise, and the mood congruence effect was therefore significant on the expertise dimension alone. Importantly, the study demonstrates that when the participant was in a negative mood by processing low individual performance information, his /her evaluations of the endorser was significantly lower, despite the team performance being high. This finding provides an important insight to marketing practitioners. When choosing a sport celebrity endorser marketers might do well to employ celebrities from individual sports than from team sport like cricket when teams and individuals go through bad patches. This study also has its limitations. A stimulus was used to induce a positive or negative mood in this study. However, such a mood induction method appears to be impractical in the real world. Future research may consider engaging in longitudinal research and surveying consumers' mood
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