Hype can harm

Too much marketing hype can harm sales.

In a study published in the March issue of the Journal of Consumer Research, a team led by UGA Terry College of Business assistant professor Vanessa Patrick finds that people take notice when they feel worse than they thought they would, but—oddly—not when they feel better than expected. The message for marketers, Patrick said, is that too much hype can hurt a company when people realize that their expectations haven’t been met.

The story shows that “affective misforecasting” really has to do with emotions and not with product performance. Misforecasting can be minimized simply by creating a more realistic expectation of the future.