Enduring Attitudes and Contextual Interest: When and Why Attitude Surveys Still Matter in the Online Consumer Decision Journey

Koen Pauwels*, Bernadette van Ewijk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Consumers leave traces of key interest to managers on their journey to purchase. Next to traditional survey-based attitudes, readily available online metrics now show aggregate consumer actions. But how do survey response metrics and online action metrics relate to each other? To what extent do they explain and predict brand sales across consumer categories? This article shows that surveys and online behavior provide complementary information for brand managers. Times series data for 32 brands in 14 categories reveal low correlations but substantial dual causality between survey metrics and online actions. Combining both types of metrics greatly increases the model's power to explain and predict brand sales in low-involvement categories. By contrast, high-involvement categories do not gain much from adding survey-based attitudes to a model including online behavior metrics. The authors synthesize these generalizations in a new framework relating enduring attitudes to the contextual interest expressed by online actions. This new framework helps managers assess both types of metrics to drive brand performance depending on whether their goal is short-term sales or long-term brand health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-34
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Interactive Marketing
Volume52
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020

Keywords

  • Attitude
  • Consumer journey
  • Marketing metrics
  • Online tracking
  • Purchase funnel
  • Vector autoregression

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