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EMAC 2020 Annual Conference

Limited edition package backlash: The role of emotional value and need for uniqueness

Published: May 27, 2020


Krisztina Dörnyei, International Business School Budapest; Renaud Lunardo, Kedge Business School


limited edition package; emotional value; need for uniqueness


Limited edition packages (LEPs) refer to temporally packages that are distinct from regular packages but include the same content (product). In light of their increasing use by brands and a lack of research on their effects, this research examines when and why LEPs can reveal more effective than regular brand packages. Through three experiments conducted in the beverage industry, this research demonstrates that LEPs lead to lower purchase intentions than regular packages and identifies emotional value as the underlying mechanism of this effect. Furthermore, the current research identifies consumers’ need for uniqueness as a boundary condition for the negative effect of LEPs, such that this negative effect is weaker for people who value the use of products as a means to express their identity. These findings are integrated into a discussion of the managerial implications and the potential avenues for future research on package design and LEPs.