International Journal of Business and Social Science

ISSN 2219-1933 (Print), 2219-6021 (Online) DOI: 10.30845/ijbss

Communicating Authority through Symbols: A Case Study on Affecting Consumer Product Value-Perception
Justin Velten, Dallas Flick

The large body of research surrounding the authority principle focuses predominantly on human-based authority figures. There is a gap in the literature regarding the authority base of symbols, so this study extends our understanding of the authority principle to encompass symbol-only authority. This paper considers the success of the Certified Angus Beef® label in projecting authority without association to an authority figure. A qualitative study utilizing the quasi-statistic interview results of over 150 consumer-participants revealed a strong connection to the Certified Angus Beef® label as a predominant purchase point. The authority principle helps us better understand why consumers gravitate to symbols with minimal introspective understanding as to why.

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