The Effect of Brand-Health Issue Fit on Fast-Food Health-Marketing Initiatives

Abstract: Recognizing that fast-food brands are increasingly interested in featuring health and wellness values in their marketing, this study investigated the effect of perceived brand-health issue fit on consumer responses to a fast-food health-marketing initiative. Consistent with previous findings and the schema-congruent framework, the results of the current study indicate that an advertising message with high brand-issue fit, compared to one with low brand-issue fit, elicited more favorable consumer responses. In addition, this study tested two different advertising message strategies (i.e., health issue-focused vs. brand-focused) under high and low brand-health issue fit conditions. In line with the predictions of categorization theory, the health issue-focused advertising message was more effective than the brand-focused advertising message under the low fit condition. The findings have theoretical and managerial implications and can help practitioners develop better marketing and advertising strategies for fast-food health marketing initiatives.