The examination of individual differences in consumer information processing is an emerging area of research within both marketing and consumer behavior. In this article, we report on two studies that focus on ability versus preference for imaginal or visual processing. The first study assesses the psychometric properties of frequently used measures of imaginal processing ability and preference; the study's results were somewhat supportive of the two ability measures but not supportive of the preference measure. The second study proposes and tests a new measure of processing preference—the Style of Processing (SOP) scale—which exhibits internal consistency as well as discriminant and criterion validity.

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