Many ethnic restaurants use authentic-language labels (e.g., “Khao Pad Sapparod”), as opposed to English-language labels (e.g., “Pineapple Fried Rice”), in the menu to make their dishes appeal more authentic. Yet, the effectiveness of authentic-language labels is not well understood. To address this gap, the present research examines consumers’ attitudes toward a menu as a function of (a) authentic-language versus English-language menu labeling and (b) the consumer’s Need for Cognitive Closure (NFCC)—a fundamental desire to achieve resolution on a decision. The results show that while consumers with low NFCC prefer a menu using authentic-language (vs. English-language) labeling, their high NFCC counterparts respond more favorably to a menu using English-language (vs. authentic-language) labeling. Moreover, a moderated mediation analysis reveals that an intensified bothersome feeling in achieving resolution is the psychological mechanism explaining why authentic-language labels backfire among consumers with high NFCC. Theoretical and managerial implications are discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management