thesisposted on 29.03.2022, 02:24 by Khondker Galib B. Mohiuddin
‘Cool’ is a concept that is highly relevant for many marketing researchers and practitioners. This is because cool brands can positively influence consumers’ attitudes and behaviours. While cool is commonly targeted through approaches such as ‘coolhunting’, very little research has been conducted to explicate and develop empirical models of cool in the context of brands. In particular, there is a lack of a unified definition of cool and established scales that operationalise cool in different contexts. This thesis addresses these gaps through a series of three interconnected studies that: (1) develop a conceptual framework to understand cool as a concept; (2) empirically test a model of brand cool; and (3) develop and test an 18-item scale to measure brand cool. The first study consists of a systematic review that identifies seven key dimensions of cool: deviating from norms, subversive, evasive, attractive, self-expressive, pro-social, and indicative of maturity. A holistic framework of cool is then developed that integrates existing knowledge on cool from different contexts. Study 2 involves a qualitative interview study involving consumers and marketing experts. This study generated attributes of cool brands and an initial list of items to measure cool that align with the dimensions identified in study 1. Study 2 also provides new insights on how consumer perceptions of cool evolve from adolescence to adulthood. Study 3 is a scale development study that first refines the list of items identified in study 2 and then through a series of four surveys examines the dimensionality, convergent and concurrent validity, and test-retest reliability of the scale. The results lead to a four-dimension model of brand cool (dynamism, composure, subversion, and confidence) that can be measured through a scale. These results clarify the nature of cool and provide marketers with a robust scale to assess cool in different contexts.