Emotion in Advertising: Theoretical and Practical Explorations

Emotion in Advertising: Theoretical and Practical Explorations

Emotion in Advertising: Theoretical and Practical Explorations

Emotion in Advertising: Theoretical and Practical Explorations

Synopsis

This volume explores the complex relationship between emotion and advertising. The chapters include both theoretical and empirical contributions representing a broad spectrum of approaches and techniques. Some of the key topics explored include the measurement of mood, emotion and feeling in an advertising context, the effects of mood on recall and advertising effectiveness, the interaction of the message with the emotional make-up of the recipient, and the structural aspects of an ad and how they relate to emotional responses.

Excerpt

Julie A. Edell

Much of the existing advertising research focuses on how consumers process the brand information conveyed in an advertisement. The consumer has been seen as an active information seeker who views advertising to learn all that can be learned about the brand in order to make the optimal choice. Advertising practitioners have long sensed that the way in which the message is conveyed is at least as important as what the message says. But it has been only in the last few years that researchers have begun to conceptualize about and to attempt to capture emotional reactions to ads. The dominance of learning-based advertising response has shifted to a more balanced approach which includes the evaluation of the ad itself, as well as the emotional reactions to the ad.

Advertising researchers are not alone in shifting some of their attention away from cognitive to affective or emotional reactions. Social psychologists are also embracing the notion that affective reactions have been under-researched. Robert Zajonc (1980) has stimulated much research and thinking with his provocative article that argues that affect and cognition are under the control of independent systems. He concluded that affect and cognition influence each other in numerous ways, and that both effects are important in understanding how people respond to stimuli in the world.

In a more applied setting, R. P. Abelson, D. Kinder, M. D. Peters, and S. T. Fiske (1982) examined the affective and semantic components in people's perceptions of political figures. They concluded that affective reactions are different from cognitive reactions. Affective reactions are more episodic in nature and, as such, are less subject to consistency pressure than are cognitive reactions. Thus, some might easily say that former President Carter has made them feel both angry and proud, but they are quite unlikely to judge him to be both honest and power hungry. Abelson et al. (1982) conclude that not only do affective . . .

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