The purpose of the paper is to test a model dealing with direct and indirect effects of self-image congruence on brand loyalty. The model posits that self-image congruence positively affects brand loyalty directly and indirectly through functional congruity, product involvement, and brand relationship quality. The model was tested using cars as the product stimulus in a survey of 600 car owners. We chose automobiles because cars are high in conspicuousness (therefore are likely to be evaluated using symbolic criteria) and are used across a variety of situations. The model was mostly supported by the data. First, the results document the paramount importance of self-congruity in predicting brand loyalty. Second, our study integrated the emerging construct of brand relationship quality into self-congruity theory. Third, in regards to the hypothesized effect of self-congruity on functional congruity, the data were supportive. Additional managerial implications are discussed.
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