Consumers' Online Cognitive Scripts: A Neurophysiological Approach

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Presentation at the 2012 Gmunden NeuroIS Retreat, Austria, June 2012

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Consumers' Online Cognitive Scripts: A Neurophysiological Approach

  1. 1. Consumers Online CognitiveScripts: A NeurophysiologicalApproach Sylvain Sénécal (HEC Montréal) Pierre-Majorique Léger (HEC Montréal) Marc Fredette (HEC Montréal) René Riedl (University of Linz) Gmunden Retreat on NeuroIS 2012 Gmunden, Austria, June 3-6
  2. 2. Tech3LabInsfrastructure financingOperational financingScientific partners
  3. 3. Group experimental room
  4. 4. Group experimental room
  5. 5. Individual experimental room
  6. 6. Individual experimental room
  7. 7. Cognitive Script• “Coherent sequence of events expected by the individual, involving him either as a participant or as an observer” (Abelson 1976)• “Predetermined, stereotyped sequence of actions that define a well-known situation.” (Shank and Abelson 1977)• Basically, it allows people to understand and behave appropriately in a particular situation (Abelson 1981).• Experts form more elaborate, distinctive, contingent, and hypothetical scripts than novices (Leong et al. 1989; Martin 1991)
  8. 8. Research Objectives1. Validate if consumers activate cognitive scripts when shopping online;2. Understand how cognitive scripts are formed by consumers over multiple shopping trips;3. Investigate how consumers activating different cognitive scripts respond when facing a novel shopping environment (e.g., a new store).
  9. 9. Potential Contributions• To theory: – Better understand script activation over multiple interactions – Script and Self-service technology• To practice: – Help managers provide satisfying online experiences – Potentially, locking-in consumers with easier to learn websites (Johnson and Bellman 2003).
  10. 10. Cognitive Script and Neuroscience• When encountering a situation, the brain tries to match the input information (e.g., Burger King) with a similar representation existing in memory (Barr 2009).• By activating a certain analogy, information that is associated with this analogy in memory is triggered, generating a prediction of what to expect next (Bar 2009, Bar and Neta 2008).• Hence, cognitive scripts could be at the basis of human brain activity and consequently human behaviors• “Information encoded in our memory guides and sometimes dictates our future behavior. One can look at our experience as stored in memory as scripts.” (Bar 2009, p.1239)
  11. 11. Hypotheses• H1: Consumers, whose script was formed during repeated visits to a single website (intrascript consumers), will possess a different script than those whose script was formed during single visits to different websites (interscript consumers).
  12. 12. Neurophysiological differences betweenNovices and Experts Hill and Schneider, 2006
  13. 13. Hypotheses• H2: When revisiting the website, intrascript consumers will more use automatic processing.• H3: When visiting a new and dissimilar website, intrascript consumers will use more controlled processing.
  14. 14. Hypotheses• H4: When visiting a new and dissimilar website, interscript consumers will have more positive attitudes toward the website than intrascript consumers.
  15. 15. Method• Pretest conducted in Summer 2011• Main study – Lab expriment – Subjects: No online music purchase experience – Data collected in March - April 2012 – Data analysis: ongoing
  16. 16. Method – Main study• Questionnaire 1 – « Online music purchase » script elicitation 1 – List of 10 songs• Random assignment to Group A (same site) or B (different sites) – Purchase task: One song per website (1 hour and/or 10 websites max.)• Questionnaire 2 – « Online music purchase » script elicitation 2 – Website evaluation (Bressolles and Nantel 2008) – Demographics
  17. 17. Experimental Design One Hour (maximum)Intrascript A A A A A A A A A A L QuestionnaireInterscript B C D E F G H I J K L Questionnaire
  18. 18. Measures• Neurophysiological – Electroencephalography (EEG) and Heart Rate (HR) • B-Alert® X10 • EEG based engagement index (Berka 2007): sleep onset, distraction, low engagement, and high engagement. • EEG based workload index – Electrodermal response (EDR) • Procomp Infinity (Thought Technology)• Self-reported – Website evaluation (Bressolles and Nantel 2008) • Aesthetics, Ease of Use, Information Quality, Interactivity/Personalisation
  19. 19. Pretest and Main StudyB-Alert EEG Headset
  20. 20. Results• Pre-test done in Summer 2011 with 6 subjects.• Real test done in March-April 2012 with 20 subjects.• Once the data are processed, we still have about 20 measures per subject per thousandth of second (approx. 75,000,000 observations per subject).• Per subject, we have approx. 250Mo of data (unstructured data excluded)
  21. 21. Description des données
  22. 22. H1 : Consumers, whose script was formed during repeated visits to a single website(intrascript consumers), will possess a different script than those whose script wasformed during single visits to different websites (interscript consumers).• Two independent judges coded each participant’s initial and final scripts (Intercoder reliability coefficient 0.97)• Average number of events between the initial and final script: – Intrascript condition : from 5.70 to 5.65 events – Interscript condition : from from 7.18 to 7.55 events – Difference in variation (-0.05 vs. 0.37) was not statistically significant based on a Mann-Whitney test (n1=10 and n2=11)
  23. 23. H2: When revisiting the website, intrascript consumers will more use automatic processing. H3: When visiting a new and dissimilar website, intrascript consumers will use more controlled processing. Intrascript group Interscript groupN = 14
  24. 24. H4 : When visiting a new and dissimilar website, interscript consumers will have morepositive attitudes toward the website than intrascript consumers. N = 21
  25. 25. Next step

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