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cognitive dissonance


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A state of mental conflict caused by a difference between a consumer's expectations of a product and its actual performance. As expectations are largely formed by advertising, dissonance may be reduced by making only realistic and consistent claims about a product's performance. Cognitive dissonance can increase if the buyer feels anxious about the decision, particularly if new information has been received about the product or service. The more negative the new information, the greater the dissonance.


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