Positive ads not always the best way to reach consumersJune 16th, 2009 - 12:10 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, June 16 (ANI): A new study has shown that advertisements that feature positive emotions, like happiness, are not always effective.
For the study, Loraine Lau-Gesk (University of California, Irvine) and Joan Meyers-Levy (University of Minnesota, Minneapolis) examined consumer attitudes toward emotional ads.
They found that people’s responses are affected by factors such as the amount of mental energy or attention they are able to devote to the ads as well as the physical layout of the advertising.
“Although under some circumstances consumers may respond more favourably to ads that feature positive rather than negative emotions, this is not always the case,” the authors said.
“Instead, how favourably consumers respond to ads depends on whether the amount of mental resources they devote to the ad is comparable to the amount of such resources that are needed to optimally appreciate and understand key aspects of the ad,” they added.
The researchers said that when consumers are interested in an ad, they are better able to devote mental resources to thinking about it.
Therefore, advertising aimed at interested consumers can tap into more complicated emotions, such as bittersweet nostalgia, anxiety, and guilt.
On contrary, disinterested consumers react to less nuanced messages.
“When ad recipients lack much interest in an ad and therefore expend minimal mental resources processing it, the favourableness of their response to the ad depends primarily on the favourableness of the ad’s emotional appeal,” the authors said.
“Ads that convey positive emotions by depicting uplifting events, outcomes, or people will not always enhance persuasion more than ads that feature downhearted or agitated emotions.
“While more upbeat ads may be more persuasive among consumers who lack much interest in and expend few mental resources considering the ad, this may not hold true for more interested and involved consumers who invest considerable mental resources thinking about the ad or its product,” they added.
The study is published in the Journal of Consumer Research. (ANI)
Tags: advertisements, anxiety, consumer attitudes, emotional appeal, guilt, happiness, interested consumers, joan meyers, lau, levy, mental energy, mental resources, negative emotions, nostalgia, nuanced messages, persuasion, physical layout, university of california irvine, university of minnesota, university of minnesota minneapolis