مدیریت انتظارات حسی مربوط به محصولات و نام های تجاری (برند) : سرمایه گذاری بر ظرفیت نمادپردازی صدا و شکل
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|1931||2012||18 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Consumer Psychology, Volume 22, Issue 1, January 2012, Pages 37–54
In this article, the evidence demonstrating the existence of a variety of robust crossmodal correspondences between both sounds (phonetic speech sounds, tones, and other parameters of musical expression) and shapes, and the sensory attributes (specifically the taste, flavor, aroma, and oral-somatosensory attributes) of various foods and beverages is reviewed. The available research now clearly suggests that marketers can enhance their consumers' product experiences by ensuring that the sound symbolism of the brand name, as well as any shape symbolism of/on the labeling, and even the very shape of the packaging itself, sets up the right (i.e., congruent) product-related sensory expectations in the mind of the consumer. In this review, the rapidly-growing literature on the topic of sound and shape symbolism is critically evaluated. Potential caveats, limitations, and problems of interpretation with previous studies are highlighted. The question of whether this approach to sensory marketing should be considered as implicit (or functionally subconscious) is also addressed. Finally, some of the relative strengths and weaknesses of this approach to modulating a consumer's product-related expectations (relative to various other approaches) are considered.
Most of our everyday experiences, at least the pleasant ones, are multisensory. A consumer's brand and product experiences are no exception, as many sensory marketers are increasingly coming to realize (e.g., Hultén, 2011, Hultén et al., 2009, Krishna, 2010, Lindstrom, 2005 and Spence, 2002). That said, introspection often tells us that we see color only with our eyes, that we feel softness exclusively with our fingertips, and that we taste the crunch of the potato chip only with our mouths. However, the empirical evidence that has emerged from the psychology and neuroscience laboratories over the last few years tells a very different story. In fact, it has now become increasingly apparent that what we see, and how we feel about it, are also influenced by what we happen to be smelling at the time (Demattè, Österbauer and Spence, 2007, Li et al., 2007 and Spence, 2008). Similarly, our perception of softness is influenced by olfactory cues (Churchill et al., 2009, Demattè, Sanabria, Sugarman and Spence, 2006 and Laird, 1932), and crispness turns out to be as much a matter of what we hear, as about what we actually feel in the mouth (see Spence and Shankar, 2010, Spence et al., 2011 and Zampini and Spence, 2004). One aspect of multisensory perception that has started to gain increasing importance over the last couple of years relates to the topic of crossmodal correspondences ( Spence, 2011a, Spence, 2011b and Spence, 2011c). Generally-speaking, crossmodal correspondences can be defined as a tendency for a feature, or attribute, in one sensory modality to be matched (or associated) with a sensory feature, or attribute in another sensory modality (Parise & Spence, in press a). One ubiquitous crossmodal correspondence is that between larger objects (no matter whether seen or felt) and lower-pitched sounds, and smaller objects and higher-pitched sounds ( Parise and Spence, 2009 and Walker and Smith, 1985). In this case, at least, the correspondence reflects a fundamental law of physics. The two classes of crossmodal correspondence that I wish to look at in this article are commonly-referred to as sound and shape symbolism. Sound symbolism is the name given to the association that people experience between specific sounds (including speech sounds) and particular stimulus attributes (e.g., as when they associate words containing the ‘i’ sound with smallness). Shape symbolism refers to the similar crossmodal mapping that exists between abstract shapes and other sensory attributes (e.g., as between sharp pointy shapes and bitterness or carbonation in foods and beverages). Put simply, when the different sensory attributes of a product, or its packaging, or of the environment in which that product is purchased, used, or experienced match (or correspond) crossmodally, then this can impact positively on the consumer's overall multisensory consumer experience. In this chapter, I want to review the evidence demonstrating that our rapidly growing understanding of the psychological mechanisms underlying crossmodal correspondences, and in particular sound and shape symbolism, can be used to set up the appropriate sensory expectations in the mind of the consumer which, in turn can enhance the consumer's multisensory experience of both products and brands. In order to try and keep this article manageable, I will focus on the use of sound and shape symbolism in the food and beverage sectors. However, it should be noted that the findings outlined here are equally applicable to a number of different classes of product, everything from portable electronic goods to prescription medications, and from fast-moving consumer goods (FMCGs) to major household investments, such as cars (e.g., Abel & Glinert, 2008). Interestingly, many of these crossmodal effects appear to operate on an implicit level (i.e., without the consumer necessarily being aware of what is going on). Hence, it is not uncommon to find that, when asked, consumers deny being influenced by sound and shape symbolism, and yet carefully controlled studies of their behavior, in both the laboratory and in the marketplace, tell a very different story (see also Cheskin, 1972).
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Although research on the topic of sound and shape symbolism has a long history in the fields of experimental psychology and linguistics, it is only in the last decade or so that researchers have really started to realize the potential relevance of this area of study for the fields of product naming, branding, and packaging design. The latest findings from this newly-revitalized field of research (see Robson, 2011) now demonstrate that the sounds present in the brand name, the abstract imagery on a product's packaging, or even the shape of the label or packaging itself, can be used to set-up sub-conscious expectations in the minds of consumers. These expectations, which concern the likely sensory attributes of food and beverage items will then influence, albeit subtly, their perception of, and hence their liking for, a particular product. By making sure that the expectation about the likely taste, smell, and flavor of food and beverage products is met, one can significantly increase the likelihood that consumers will enjoy those products more (Cardello, 1994, Pinson, 1986, Schifferstein, 2001 and Yeomans et al., 2008; though see also Piqueras-Fiszman & Spence, in press b). Importantly, this form of expectation setting appears to operate at an implicit level. The ultimate aim here, then, is to capitalize on our growing understanding of the phenomena of sound and shape symbolism in order to more appropriately guide consumer expectations in the marketplace. To recap, the sound/shape-taste/flavor/oral-somatosensory correspondences that have been documented to date include the finding that sourness, bitterness, crunchiness, and carbonation, correspond crossmodally with angular shapes and sharper/harder plosive stop consonants as well as with higher-pitched frontal vowels. By contrast, sweet, still, and creamy food and beverage products appear to share a crossmodal correspondence with rounder shapes and speech sounds, as well as with back vowels. Table 1 provides a summary of many of the sound, shape, and color symbolism effects relevant to the taste and flavor of food and drink items that have been documented to date. Of course, rather than using the sound/shape symbolism approach to correctly predict the sensory experience of a food or beverage etc., there will always be some temptation to use sound/shape symbolism in order to set-up expectations that are actually higher (better) than what is actually being delivered by a product. However, while there may certainly be some possibility to enhance the consumer experience in this way (cf. Woods et al., 2011), one has to be very careful not to go too far, and give rise to disconfirmed expectations (Schifferstein, 2001). Researchers have now shown that such disconfirmed expectation, when the product experience does not meet the consumer's product expectation, can give rise to long-lasting negative consequences for product perception and consumption (Yeomans et al., 2008; though see also Piqueras-Fiszman and Spence, 2011 and Piqueras-Fiszman and Spence., submitted for publication). At this point, however, one might reasonably ask whether there is really any need to use (or benefit associated with) such subtle sound/shape symbolism manipulations in the marketplace. Why should one use sound/shape symbolism when one can place actual product images on the packaging and/or choose brand names with semantic meaning, and or which are especially attention-capturing, memorable, and/or which consumers find it easy to process perceptually (e.g., Alter and Oppenheimer, 2006, Keller et al., 1998, Labroo et al., 2008, Nilsen, 1979, Pérez Hernández, 2011, Van Ittersum et al., 2003 and Vanden Bergh et al., 1987)? Well, in practice, and as I have tried to make clear throughout this review, sound and shape symbolism should be considered as but one element in a successful brand naming, and product and packaging design strategy. The claim here is certainly not that sound/shape symbolism can be used to replace all these other approaches, but that by combining this approach with other effective strategies, the likelihood of a food or beverage brand's success in the marketplace will be increased (e.g., Klink, 2001 and Vanden Bergh et al., 1987). That said, it is also important to note that the sound/shape symbolism approach may have a number of unique advantages relative to other more explicit/semantic forms of labeling/branding. First, many shape/sound symbolism effects appear to be universal. That is, they are shared by people over the world. What this means in practice is that certain examples of shape/sound symbolism should work particularly well in the global marketplace. Although the relevant research has yet to be conducted, the implication of previous studies of sound and shape symbolism is that they tend to be shared cross-culturally (e.g., Davis, 1961, Diffloth, 1994 and Hinton et al., 1994). Whether the same is true for the crossmodal correspondence between sounds, shapes and the taste and flavor of food and beverage items will obviously be an important question for future research.9 It should be noted here that such universality is not a property of brand names that contain semantic content (Klink, 2003; see also Lowenthal, 1981). Indeed, one important limitation with semantically meaningful brand names is precisely that they may only work in those markets were the potential customers happen to speak the ‘right’ language. Second, sound/shape symbolism may also have the advantage over other more semantic/explicit forms of packaging/branding in that it operates at an implicit (or ‘functionally nonconscious’) level (McNeil, 2003), not to mention the fact that its occurrence appears to be both automatic and effortless (Yorkston & Menon, 2004). What this means in practice is that consumers will likely not show any conscious rejection, or evaluation, of the information that is being provided to them (via the sound/shape symbolism route). This may not be such an issue for those product attributes that consumers value positively, such as carbonation in a beverage or bitterness (in coffee), say. However, it may be much more relevant when it comes to product attributes that consumers desire, but which at the same time happen to be associated with less positive sensory qualities. Take, for example, the case of low-fat foods. Many consumers expect that such foods will be associated with a lower quality taste (sensory/hedonic experience). Indeed, several studies have now shown that explicitly labeling a food as ‘low-fat’ or ‘healthy’ often has a negative consequence on consumers' product evaluation, no matter what the taste (e.g., Wansink et al., 2004; see also ‘Does the label “change” the taste?’, 1962, Solheim, 1992 and Wansink and Park, 2002). Should there be some crossmodal correspondence between oral fat (or texture) and sound/shape, then it may be possible to convey the message to consumers that a food is low in fat (or healthy) in a manner that is functionally subliminal (or implicit). In turn, the hope would be that by adopting this approach, it doesn't engage a consumer's conscious (and in this case negative) evaluation in quite the same way that an explicit low-fat (or healthy) label does. Finally, the fact that many sound/shape symbolism effects appear to be present from very soon after birth (i.e., prior to the development of language; e.g., Maurer et al., 2006 and Walker et al., 2010; see also Reardon & Bushnell, 1988) means that this approach to setting expectations could perhaps be particularly effective when it comes to food and beverage items that are targeted at infants. Even in adults, brand names that utilize the appropriate sound and shape symbolism are likely to be learned more rapidly and remembered for longer (Kantartzis et al., 2011, Kovic et al., 2009 and Robson, 2011). At this point, one can only speculate as to whether one's household pets also show shape and/or sound symbolism effects. In conclusion, the sound and shape symbolism approach to setting and modifying consumer expectations for food and drink products would appear to offer an effective means for marketers to implicitly (or subconsciously) guide their potential consumers' expectations about the likely taste, aroma, flavor, and/or oral-somatosensory attributes of the products that they market. To the extent that the marketers are successful in achieving this goal, consumers are likely to enjoy their product offerings more. While the gaps shown in Table 1 clearly highlight the fact that more research is needed, I would argue that there are already enough well-supported insights/findings that are already actionable. While some marketers may have serendipitously (or intuitively) stumbled across certain of these phenomena over the years (e.g., Cheskin, 1957, Cheskin, 1972 and Dichter, 1971; see Spence & Gallace, 2011), we now have a much firmer scientific basis on which to base, limit, extend, and effectively utilize such findings.