Moral character effects in endorser perception

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Abstract

This research consists of two experimental studies investigating the influence of moral character on endorser perception, and the influence of perceiver characteristics on tarnished endorser perception and brand evaluations. Perceiver characteristics are discussed from the perspectives of dispositional tendency, innate moral intuitions and self-location. The first study compared the influences of moral character and warmth on endorser perception. The second study examined the impact of perceiver characteristics on tarnished endorsers and brand evaluations. The findings reveal that moral character is more influential than warmth on endorser evaluations. Tarnished endorsers with immoral character exert more negative influence than tarnished endorsers with coldness character on brand evaluations. Innate moral intuitions and self-location moderate brand evaluations. High-morality consumers and heart-locators are more vulnerable than low-morality and brain-locators to the brands endorsed by tarnished endorsers, respectively.

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