Journal of Marketing

Empathy for the Benevolent Underdog

Consumers Respond When Upstarts Tout Their Morality

Brands like Nantucket Nectars, Ben & Jerry's, Toms Shoes, Burt's Bees and Lifeway have thrived against bigger, longer-established competitors. They’ve emphasized modest roots and played up virtues like product health benefits and their social consciousness or environmental consciousness.  Appearing resource-modest, but highly moral, they’re tapping into the adage “consumers gravitate to underdogs.”

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Robert H. Smith School of Business
Map of Robert H. Smith School of Business
University of Maryland
Robert H. Smith School of Business
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College Park MD 20742