Research Talk by Jennifer J. Argo, University of Alberta (CAN)
Jennifer J. Argo, the Carthy Professor in Marketing at the University of Alberta (Canada), presented in our Research Seminar Series her recently published work entitled “Standards of Beauty: the Impact of Mannequins in the retail context”, as well as her work in progress on how a flawed fitting-room design can affect consumer behaviour in a retail environment.
In both of her projects, Jennifer shows how subtle details can affect the behaviour of consumers and have possibly negative consequences. Firstly, as mannequins signal the normative standard of beauty from society, consumers that do not believe they fit the standard (low in appearance self-esteem) feel threatened and evaluate the product displayed by the mannequin more negatively than other consumers. Secondly, she investigated the effects of flawed fitting room designs, e.g. fitting-rooms where the curtain does not close properly, and found that consumers can feel threatened by such flaws and engage in negative word-of-mouth.
We thank Jennifer for her visit and inspiring discussions.