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EMAC 2021 Annual Conference

Avoiding or ignoring: How do grandiose and vulnerable narcissists differ in responding to cognitive dissonance and brand avoidance?

Published: May 25, 2021


Ruizhi Yuan, University of Nottingham Ningbo China; ZI WANG, University of Nottingham; Martin Liu, University of Nottingham Ningbo China; Jun Luo, University of Nottingham Ningbo China


‘Narcissism’ has recently been a topic of interest and curiosity in marketing research. Although research in psychology has identified two types of narcissism, known as grandiose (or overt) and vulnerable (or covert) narcissism, little is known about how these forms of narcissism vary and respond to self-discrepancy and dissonance. Built upon the theory of cognitive dissonance and theory of ‘narcissism’, this research aims to find out if dissonance triggered by self-discrepancy could lead to avoiding tendency of a brand and whether two types of narcissism (grandiose vs vulnerable) makes a difference in the process. And if brand avoidance can be used as a strategy especially for narcissists to cope with self-discrepancies, eliminate or reduce dissonance. Our study highlights the need for marketers to understand narcissistic targets more clearly in order to develop successful branding strategies.


This article was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 71804149 & 71972112).