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Logic is (somewhat) overrated: Image-based versus concept-based rhetoric in crowdfunding narratives

Andrew S. Manikas, PhD Patel, P. Wolfe, M. T.
Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice. December 10, 2020

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Abstract

Drawing on image-based versus concept-based rhetoric research, we test whether concept-based rhetoric—evoking rational, logical, and concrete thinking—could be less useful than image-based rhetoric—evoking more primal, imaginative, and irrational imagery—in driving crowdfunding performance. We further examine how these forms of narrative rhetoric might serve to moderate the relationship between narcissistic rhetoric and crowdfunding performance. Based on a sample of 75,636 Kickstarter projects, image-based rhetoric is positively related to crowdfunding performance, and concept-based language suppressed the relationship between narcissistic rhetoric and crowdfunding performance. Our findings have implications for understanding how narrative elements interact to influence crowdfunding outcomes.

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