48 , 2015-10 , The International Conference of Asian Marketing Associations
In an initial study (Study 1), respondents chose between two travel plans recommended by a friend and we found that the plan recommended later was preferred. Two probable reasons for this result were (1) consumers inferred that their friend made another proposal to compensate for the weakness of the first one and (2) the option presented later became the focus of comparison. In Study 2, to remove the effect of recommendation from the collected data, we asked respondents to choose between two travel agency leaflets. The results showed a consistent preference for the second option, which was best explained by the direction-of-comparison effect with the focus on the second option. The context of recommendation only slightly increased the politeness of the respondents’ attitude scores and their free answers. No effect of time distance (this weekend vs. 6 months in the future) was found.