In 1951, psychologist Solomon Asch conducted conformity experiments at Swarthmore College. He found that within peer groups, there is great pressure to conform to group norms and follow others in the group. This is especially true among younger people and people who have lower self-esteem. If marketers can establish brand usage as a group norm, it can create increased brand usage and loyalty within that group. In the late 1990s, Hallmark ran an advertising campaign that encouraged people to turn over greeting cards to make sure the Hallmark name was on the back. Not all people cared if the card was Hallmark branded, but they worried that the recipient might.
(c) 2015 by Brad VanAuken, excerpted from Brand Aid, second edition
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