ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B

心理学报 ›› 2022, Vol. 54 ›› Issue (3): 313-330.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2022.00313

• 研究报告 • 上一篇    


冯文婷1, 徐瑗苹2, 黄海2, 汪涛3()   

  1. 1中国地质大学(武汉)珠宝学院, 武汉 430074
    2中国地质大学(武汉)教育研究院, 心理科学与健康研究中心, 武汉 430074
    3武汉大学经济与管理学院, 组织营销研究中心, 武汉 430072
  • 收稿日期:2020-09-25 发布日期:2022-01-25 出版日期:2022-03-25
  • 通讯作者: 汪涛
  • 基金资助:

Kawai vs. Whimsical: The influence of cuteness types of luxury brands on consumers’ preferences

FENG Wenting1, XU Yuanping2, HUANG Hai2, WANG Tao3()   

  1. 1Gemmological Institute, China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), Wuhan 430074, China
    2Center for Psychological Science and Health, Educational Research Institute, China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), Wuhan 430074, China
    3Research Center for Organizational Marketing, Economics and Management School, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China
  • Received:2020-09-25 Online:2022-01-25 Published:2022-03-25
  • Contact: WANG Tao


奢侈品品牌热衷于使用可爱风格与消费者进行互动。本文以理想自我理论为基础, 通过4个实验探索奢侈品品牌可爱风格类型对消费者偏好的影响机制和边界条件。实验1表明奢侈品品牌的可爱风格(婴儿图式/古灵精怪)会显著地影响消费者的品牌偏好, 验证了主效应的因果链模型。实验2进一步明确了主效应的边界, 结果表明品牌可爱风格对消费者偏好的影响只在奢侈品品牌的情境下才存在。实验3探索了自我监控水平对主效应的调节作用, 发现对于低自我监控的个体, 奢侈品品牌的可爱风格难以有效地影响品牌偏好。实验4分析了个体发展阶段对主效应的调节作用, 结果表明对于成年期个体, 古灵精怪可爱风格比婴儿图式可爱风格更能提高个体的奢侈品品牌偏好, 对于童年期个体, 婴儿图式可爱风格比古灵精怪可爱风格更易获得青睐。

关键词: 奢侈品品牌, 可爱风格, 理想自我表达


Cute brand styles are being used by increasing number of luxury brands in their marketing to interact with consumers. Cuteness can be divided into two types, including kindchenschema and whimsical. The majority of current studies are focused on the effects of single kindchenschema cuteness on consumer psychology and behavior. So, how does the adoption of various cute styles by luxury brands influence consumer preference? What is the internal mechanism? We have contributed to the literature on luxury brands by investigating how consumers react to various cute styles of luxury brands in the current study.
In order to achieve their various objectives, luxury brands can deliver specific messages to the market by selecting brand images of various cute styles. In this case, the cuteness type of luxury brands (kindchenschema vs. whimsical) can influence consumers’ brand preferences through their perception of the brand’s ideal self-expression. The ideal self of an individual is generally characterized by high autonomy. According to the theory of the ideal self, the cuteness styles of luxury goods can influence consumers’ ideal self-expression through the autonomy of luxury brands. When the cuteness style is whimsical, luxury brands demonstrate high brand autonomy, which is conducive to consumers’ ideal self-expression, thereby improving consumers’ preferences for luxury brands. However, there are boundary conditions for the applicability of main effects, and self-monitoring moderates the relationship between luxury brands’ cuteness styles and consumers’ preferences. In other words, when the level of self-monitoring is low, the cuteness styles of luxury brands will not significantly affect the individual’s brand preferences.
To test our hypotheses, we conducted four experiments. Experiment 1 preliminarily shows that different cuteness styles of luxury brands can significantly influence consumers’ brand preferences. The findings validate the causal chain model, which tests the theoretical logic of main effects, from cuteness styles of luxury brands, brand autonomy, ideal self-expression, and consumer preference. Experiment 2 clarifies the main effect’s boundary. The results indicate that the influence of luxury brand cuteness styles on consumer preferences is only effective in the context of luxury brands. Experiment 3 examined the moderating effect of individual self-monitoring level on the main effect and discovered that for individuals with low self-monitoring, the cuteness styles of luxury brands could not effectively influence their brand preferences. Experiment 4 investigated the moderating effect of the individual development stage on the main effect. Adults preferred whimsical cuteness elicited over kindchenschema cuteness. Kindchenschema cuteness triggered a more positive response than whimsical cuteness in children.
According to our findings, adopting the whimsical cuteness style in luxury brands can improve consumers’ brand preferences more than kindchenschema cuteness style. When the cuteness style is kindchenschema, luxury brands demonstrate low brand autonomy, which is not conducive to consumers’ ideal self-expression, reducing consumers’ preferences for luxury brands. When the cuteness style is whimsical, luxury brands demonstrate high brand autonomy, which is consistent with the consumers’ ideal self and improves their preferences for luxury brands. When individuals have low self-monitoring, the cuteness styles of luxury brands have no effect on consumers’ preferences. These findings provide novel insights into the cuteness styles and ideal self-expression of luxury brands, implying that brands should carefully consider consumers’ level of self-monitoring before displaying various cuteness types of luxury brand styles.

Key words: luxury brands, cuteness styles, ideal self-expression