Social Psychology Network

Maintained by Scott Plous, Wesleyan University

Bob Fennis

Bob Fennis

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I'm interested in (non)conscious processes in social influence, consumer persuasion, and resistance to (unwanted) marketing efforts. More specifically, my research interests center around the consumer-context interface. What happens when consumers encounter brands, ads, influence agents or each other? To what extent will their cognitions, emotions, preferences and behavior be affected by these influence settings? And in what spheres will those effects surface? More specifically, together with colleagues, my work focuses on the role of self-regulation and regulation failure in consumer judgment and decision-making (broadly defined) in a host of influence settings, and the extent to which these responses are the product of automatic or more deliberative processes. The implications of our research directly point to new possibilities of promoting consumer wellfare and empowerment.

Primary Interests:

  • Applied Social Psychology
  • Attitudes and Beliefs
  • Communication, Language
  • Interpersonal Processes
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Persuasion, Social Influence


Journal Articles:

  • Acar-Burkay, S., Fennis, B.M., & Warlop, L. (in press). Trusting others: The polarization effects of Need for Closure. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
  • Das, E., & Fennis, B.M. (2008). In the mood to face the facts: When a positive mood promotes systematic processing of self-threatening information. Motivation and Emotion, 32, 221-230.
  • Fennis, B.M. (2011). Can’t get over me: Ego-depletion attenuates prosocial effects of perspective taking. European Journal of Social Psychology, 41, 580-585.
  • Fennis, B.M., & Aarts, H. (2012). Revisiting the agentic shift: Weakening personal control increases susceptibility to social influence. European Journal of Social Psychology, 42, 824-831.
  • Fennis, B.M., Adriaanse, M.A., Stroebe, W., & Pol, B. (2011). Bridging the intention-behavior gap: Inducing implementation intentions through persuasive appeals. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 21, 302-311.
  • Fennis, B.M., & Janssen, L. (2010). Mindlessness revisited: Sequential request techniques foster compliance by draining self-control resources. Current Psychology, 29(3), 235-246
  • Fennis, B. M., Janssen, L., & Vohs, K.D. (2009). Acts of benevolence: A limited-resource account of compliance with charitable requests. Journal of Consumer Research, 35, 906-924.
  • Fennis, B.M., & Stel, M. (2011). The pantomime of persuasion: Fit between nonverbal communication and influence strategies. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47, 806-810.
  • Fransen, M. & Fennis, B.M. (in press). Comparing the impact of explicit and implicit resistance strategies on message persuasiveness. Journal of Communication.
  • Fransen, M., Fennis, B. M., & Pruyn, A. (2008). Rest in peace? The influence of brand-induced mortality salience on consumer behaviour. Journal of Business Research, 61(10), 1053-1061.
  • Fransen, M.L., Fennis, B.M., & Pruyn, A. (2010). Matching communication modalities: The effects of modality congruence and processing style on brand evaluation and brand choice. Communication Research, 37(4), 576-598.
  • Fransen, M.L., Fennis, B.M., Pruyn, A., & Vohs, K.D. (2011). When fit fosters favoring: The role of private self-focus. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47(1), 202-207.
  • Janssen, L., Fennis, B.M., & Pruyn, A. (2010). Forewarned is forearmed: Conserving self-control strength to resist social influence. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 46, 911-921.
  • Janssen, L., Fennis, B.M., Pruyn, A., & Vohs, K. (2008). The path of least resistance: Regulatory resource depletion and the effectiveness of social influence techniques. Journal of Business Research, 61(10), 1041-1045.
  • Kardes, F. R., Fennis, B. M., Hirt, E. R., Tormala, Z. L., & Bullington, B. (2007). The moderating role of the need for cognitive closure in the effectiveness of the disrupt-then-reframe influence technique. Journal of Consumer Research, 34, 377-385.
  • Salmon, S., Fennis, B.M., De Ridder, D.T.D., Adriaanse, M.A., & De Vet, E. (2014). Health on impulse: When low self-control promotes healthy food choices. Health Psychology, 33 (2), 103-109.
  • Van Hoof, J.J., De Jong, M.D.T., Fennis, B.M., & Van Gosselt, J. (2009). “There’s alcohol in my soap”: Portrayal and effects of alcohol use in a popular television series. Health Education Research, 24(3), 421-429.
  • Wiebenga, J., & Fennis, B.M. (2014). The road traveled, the road ahead, or simply on the road? When progress framing affects motivation in goal pursuit. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 24 (1), 49-62.

Other Publications:

  • Vohs, K.D., Lasaleta, J., & Fennis, B.M. (2009). Self-regulation in the interpersonal sphere. In J. Forgas, R. Baumeister & D. Tice (Eds.), The psychology of self-regulation: Cognitive, affective, and motivational processes (pp. 289-302). New York: Taylor and Francis.

Courses Taught:

  • Advances in Intra and Interpersonal Processes
  • Experimental Research in Advertising
  • Persuasive Communication
  • Research Methods in Consumer Psychology
  • Social Influence
  • The Psychology of Advertising

Bob Fennis
Department of Marketing
University of Groningen
Nettelbosje 2
9747 AE Groningen
The Netherlands

  • Phone: +31 50 363 7065
  • Fax: Fax: +31 50 363 8252

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