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Merchants of hope? Building hope through brand community

Mariam Beruchashvili, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

This dissertation builds upon the proposition that marketplace resources represent input for consumers' hopes and examines empirically the process of hope-building through a brand community. Relying on the framework of hope as a process, the dissertation unfolds how consumers hoping to accomplish a weight loss goal deploy membership in Weight Watchers brand community to build hope. Findings reveal that membership in the Weight Watchers brand community contributes to agency thoughts and pathway thoughts towards reaching the goal. Being part of this brand community positively affirms members to continue with effort when they encounter dietary failures. At the same time, through Weight Watchers group meetings members exchange useful information for overcoming roadblocks in weight loss journey. Most importantly, lay theories or implicit beliefs about the self and the world that members hold affect the ways in which membership in the Weight Watchers brand community sustains hope. Entity theorists depend heavily on the community to furnish external impetus to persist in the difficult task of weight loss, while incremental theorists approach the community from a functional perspective of learning the tools that will help master the task and pursue a weight loss goal independently over the long term.^

Subject Area

Business Administration, Marketing

Recommended Citation

Beruchashvili, Mariam, "Merchants of hope? Building hope through brand community" (2007). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3252446.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3252446

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