When mass meets prestige: The impact of symbolic motivations, inspirations, and purchase intentions for Masstige products

Mahnaz Mansoor, Justin Paul, Abid Saeed, Jun-Hwa Cheah

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Luxury brands are increasingly targeting the middle class through ‘masstige marketing’ as the trendy business opportunity,' which combines luxury and mass appeal. This strategy aims to make high-end brands more accessible to a wider audience, catering to the desires and preferences of the middle class. Grounded in the Mass Prestige (Masstige) theory, this study examines the direct and indirect impact of Symbolic motivations (snob, Veblen, and bandwagon) on Masstige Purchase Intention (MPI) via Inspiration Towards Masstige (ITM) as a mediator. Moreover, the contingent impact of Brand Credibility (BC) between ITM and MPI was assessed. Two independent studies were conducted among consumers of clothing and car brands. Results supported all the hypothesized paths reflecting symbolic motivations as important predictors of MPI directly and through the underlying mechanism of ITM. However, significant differences were observed in the impact size of the Veblen and bandwagon motivations on ITM and MPI among clothing and car brand consumers. Moreover, results revealed that BC significantly interacts with ITM to augment the MPI in both studies. However, this contingent impact was stronger to enhance MPI among the consumers of car brands than clothing brands. Furthermore, study implications and future research directions are presented in detail.
Original languageEnglish
Article number114591
JournalJournal of Business Research
Early online date2 Mar 2024
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2024

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