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EMAC 2019 Annual Conference

Confiding in able brands with good intentions: how brand stereotypes affect brand trust

Published: May 28, 2019


Petar Gidaković, Faculty of Economics, University of Ljubljana; Vesna Zabkar, Faculty of Economics, University of Ljubljana


brand stereotype; brand trust; brand (non)users


The main goal of the paper is to investigate how brand stereotypes affect brand trust. More specifically, we explore how consumers’ perceptions of brand’s intentions and ability influence two brand trust dimensions, benevolence and competence. We applied a between-subject design, assessing brand stereotypes and brand trust for eight brands (global and local) in four different categories on a sample of 335 respondents. We demonstrate that brand stereotypes play an important role in development of brand trust, which acts as a parallel mediator to stereotype-triggered emotions in transferring effects of brand stereotypes on behavioral intentions. This finding holds for both brand users and nonusers. Therefore, consumer perceptions about brand intentions and ability play an important role in establishing brand trust both for constituting and maintaining consumer-brand relationships. The paper contributes to brand trust dynamics literature and extends the brands as intentional agents framework (BIAF).


This research is part of project Navigating Brand Preference through Consumers Stereotypes (grant number N5-0084).