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Firms, be it coffee shops or airlines, often try to bind customers with exclusivity rebates rewarding loyalty. The lab experiment presented in this video reveals that these programs are “sticky”: customers stay in those programs longer than would be “rational”. As ALEXANDER MORELL explains, customers often don’t switch to alternatives even if reaching the rebate becomes improbable. Contrary to common behavioral assumptions, the duration of rebate programs or the size of rebates did not affect the stickiness of the rebate.


Alexander Morell is Senior Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Good in Bonn (Germany). He is a doctor of laws and holds a PhD in economics. In his research he focuses on civil law, antitrust law and experimental economics.

Morell was awarded the Otto-Hahn-Medal of the Max Planck Society for his doctoral thesis on target rebates.

Original publication

Sticky Rebates: Target Rebates Induce Non-Rational Loyalty in Consumers

Emanuel V. Towfigh, Alexander Morell and Andreas Glöckner
Published in 2009

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