The Height Premium: When Shorter Men Pay More

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Conference Proceeding

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General Papers

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Although the “short man syndrome” is common in our society, its effect on consumer decision making is not well studied. We investigate how heightism influences status consumption. Across four studies, we demonstrate that shorter men prefer status products and are willing to pay (WTP) higher prices for products that signal status to reduce the negative effect of heightism. We demonstrate that desire for status and signaling effectiveness serially mediate the effect and sense of purpose moderates the effect of heightism on status consumption. We rule out several alternative explanations, and discuss theoretical, managerial, and policy implications.

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