Celebrity Transgression and Consumers’ Forgiveness: Does Religiosity Matter?

Shimul, A.S., Barber, M. and Abedin, M.I. (2021), "Celebrity transgression and consumers’ forgiveness: does religiosity matter?", Journal of Islamic Marketing, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIMA-06-2020-0184

27 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2021

See all articles by Anwar Sadat Shimul

Anwar Sadat Shimul

Curtin University of Technology - Curtin Business School - Bentley Campus

Matthew Barber

Curtin University

Mohammad Ishmam Abedin Abedin

Independent

Date Written: October 21, 2021

Abstract

Purpose – This paper examines the role of religiosity on consumers’ forgiveness when celebrities get involved in transgression. The celebrity’s reaction and its impact on consumers’ forgiveness is tested as well. In addition, consumers’ attitudes toward the brand and celebrity as well as purchase intention for the endorsed brand are examined both before and after the transgression.

Design/methodology/approach – Data (n = 356) were collected through a self-administered online survey and analysed though Structural Equation Modelling in AMOS 26.

Findings – The results show that consumers’ attitudes toward celebrity, brand and purchase intention gets weaker once the celebrity gets into transgression. Consumers tend to forgive more if the celebrity apologises (vs. denies) for the wrongdoing. The hypothesised relationship between attitude toward celebrity and purchase intention did not sustain after the transgression. In addition, consumers’ intrinsic religiosity strengthen the relationship between attitude toward the celebrity and purchase intention.

Practical implications – The findings of this research present valuable implications for brands practitioners. Brands should formulate actionable contingency plans to mitigate the negative ramifications of celebrity transgressions. Specifically, intrinsic religiosity and celebrity apologies should assist consumers in forgiving the transgression, and negate the implications that could have arisen if the celebrity instead denied the transgressions.

Originality/ value – This research extends the previous research by examining religiosity and forgiveness within the context of celebrity transgressions. This is one of the first few research to consider the role religiosity plays in consumers’ intention to forgive celebrity transgressions.

Keywords: Religiosity, Apology, Forgiveness, Celebrity transgression, Brand attitude, Advertisement, Muslim consumers.

Suggested Citation

Shimul, Anwar Sadat and Barber, Matthew and Abedin, Mohammad Ishmam, Celebrity Transgression and Consumers’ Forgiveness: Does Religiosity Matter? (October 21, 2021). Shimul, A.S., Barber, M. and Abedin, M.I. (2021), "Celebrity transgression and consumers’ forgiveness: does religiosity matter?", Journal of Islamic Marketing, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIMA-06-2020-0184, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3947030

Anwar Sadat Shimul (Contact Author)

Curtin University of Technology - Curtin Business School - Bentley Campus ( email )

GPO Box U1987
Perth WA 6845
Australia

Matthew Barber

Curtin University ( email )

Kent Street
Bentley
Perth, WA WA 6102
Australia

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