Attitudinal and behavioral resistance: A marketing perspective

Julie Tinson, Angeline Close, Linda Tuncay Zayer, Peter Nuttall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (SciVal)


Resistance to ritual practice and related consumption behavior has been under-researched in both marketing and consumer research, although it has significant implications for business and consumers. In this paper, the authors offer an explanation of attitudinal and behavioral resistance by reporting on the findings of a qualitative interpretative study of those self-identifying as high school prom resistors. Four types of resistance are posited, that is, identity-positioning resistors, identity-protecting resistors, emotional resistors, and apathetic resistors. Characteristics of the typology are developed and consequences of their behaviors discussed. Theoretical and managerial consequences are proposed. Understanding resistance to prom may lead to improved service provision, better targeting of communication messages (e.g., advertising), overcoming event dilution as well as generating positive word of mouth, and reducing consumer regret. This research expands the theoretical understanding of attitudinal and behavioral resistance by bringing new evidence as to the individual and social identity processes by which resistance develops. This study helps to better understand opposition to positional consumption as well as extending our understanding of why individuals resist consumption and related practice. Two new concepts are also identified and discussed, namely "event dilution" and "regret through resistance". Managerial implications (contextual and for marketplace rituals) are posited.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)436-448
JournalJournal of Consumer Behaviour
Issue number6
Early online date11 Oct 2013
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013


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