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Title: The congruent and comparative impacts of weather on consumer reviews: evidence from an online forum and experiment

Authors: Judy Ma; Dongling Huang; Yu Wang

Addresses: California State University, East Bay, 25800 Carlos Bee Blvd., Hayward, CA 94542, USA ' California State University, Northridge, 18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge, CA 91330-8377, USA ' California State University, Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90840-8502, USA

Abstract: This research examines the impact of weather on consumer reviews of products and services. Although anecdotal and empirical evidence indicate that weather influences consumers' choices and shopping behaviour, little is known about how weather impacts consumers' evaluations of products and services. We propose that consumer reviews are influenced by incidental weather conditions both during product experience and during retrospective product evaluation. Using both online consumer review data and an experiment, we find consistent evidence that: 1) weather during experience and during retrospection have directionally congruent impacts on the positivity of product reviews; 2) changes in weather from experience to retrospection result in a comparative effect, by which negative (positive) changes in weather from the time of experience to the time of review are associated with more positive (negative) reviews. This research offers strategic implications for the timing of direct marketing messages, such as mobile advertising and product review solicitation.

Keywords: online consumer reviews; weather; mood-as-information; memory; direct marketing; empirical research; experimental research.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIMA.2021.112788

International Journal of Internet Marketing and Advertising, 2021 Vol.15 No.1, pp.54 - 83

Received: 16 Mar 2019
Accepted: 28 May 2019

Published online: 22 Jan 2021 *

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