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Abstract

In today`s society with its emphasis on unlimited information access, control of available information about high-technology products is often vital to their success. When a product is released, consumers may initially be attracted through information about its remarkable internal and external features. They may also perceive a degree of congruence between their own personalities and the product image as more information becomes available over time. Consumers` changing impressions of the product may influence personality congruence negatively or positively. These changes and their effects on prefer-ence for high-technology products are the focus of this paper. A survey was given to a sample of 206 students at K University to investigate the degree to which consumer behavior can be influenced by personality congruence. The need for clear and definite product knowledge in this process and the effect of product information on preference were also investigated. Three analyses were conducted. The results of Analysis 1 showed the influence of per-sonality congruence on preference for high-technology products. Judgments about personality con-gruence were based on non-compensatory rather than compensatory information processing. The re-spondents considered certain aspects of a product`s personality rather than the product as a whole when making preference decisions. The results of Analysis 2 indicated that when less information was available about a product, consumers who perceived high personality congruence with the product tended to have higher preference for it compared to those who perceived low personality congruence with the product. On the other hand, when consumers were given more information, no difference was observed in the impact of personality on preference between perceived high and low personality congruence. Lastly, the results of Analysis 3 showed that when consumers with high need for closure (NFC) perceived high congruence between their own personalities and a product, objective information regarding the product was not used in decision-making: instead, judgments about the product were based on perceived personality congruence. On the other hand, high-NFC consumers who perceived low personality congruence between themselves and the product tended to require more information about the product in order to give it a positive evaluation. In contrast, low-NFC consumers who per-ceived high personality congruence felt comfortable with large amounts of information, For low-NFC consumers who perceived low congruence, the level of information had no influence on preference.

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