Abstract

The authors develop a conceptual model of how the congruence of political ideology and persuasive appeals enhances sustainable behaviors. In study 1, persuasive appeals consistent with individualizing and binding moral foundations were developed to enhance liberal and conservative recycling. In study 2, individualizing and binding appeals were tested on actual recycling behavior using a longitudinal field study to demonstrate the effectiveness of messages congruent with the moral foundations of liberals and conservatives. Study 3 demonstrated that enhanced fluency represents the underlying psychological process that mediates the relationship between message congruence and intentions. Moreover, study 3 established that spillover effects resulting from increased intentions to engage in sustainable disposition behavior enhance intentions to engage in sustainable acquisition and consumption behaviors. Finally, study 4 ruled out potential message confounds to demonstrate the robustness of the findings. Practical implications for marketers and public policy officials interested in increasing sustainable behaviors are offered.

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