Publication Details

Rossiter, J. & Bellman, S. (2012). Emotional branding pays off: How brands meet share of requirements through bonding, companionship, and love. Journal of Advertising Research, 52 (3), 291-296.


Emotional branding is defined here as the consumer’s attachment of a strong, specific, usage-relevant emotion—such as Bonding, Companionship, or Love—to the brand. The present large-scale survey of buyers of frequently purchased consumer products finds that, for such products, full-strength emotional branding is attained among, at most, only about 25 per cent of the brand’s buyers but that, if attained, it pays off massively in terms of personal share of purchases. Emotional branding may well be more widely effective for high involvement, positively motivated products (not surveyed here). It seems that advertising can generate the expectancy of strong, specific, emotional attachment, but very favorable brand usage experience must follow if this approach is to be successful. In general, the traditional benefit-based “USP” advertising strategy seems less risky with lesser though more widespread effectiveness.



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