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Picture-based persuasion in advertising: the impact of attractive pictures on verbal ad's content

Abstract : Purpose-The present study aims to further examine the persuasive effect of pictures in a print ad according to the recipient's ability to process the information and to observe to what extent the presence of a picture could negatively influence recipients' attitude toward the ad's verbal claim. Design/methodology/approach-Two studies were designed to manipulate the presence vs absence of an attractive/unattractive picture, the kind of verbal claims (affectively based vs rationally based) and the recipient's ability to process the ad (cognitive load vs no cognitive load). Findings-Main findings showed that the presence of an attractive picture elicited an unfavorable attitude toward the functional verbal claim when recipients were not cognitively charged. Furthermore, it proved to be a mediator of the influence of pictures on attitude toward the ad. The positive influence of an attractive picture on product evaluation and purchase intention was greater under a cognitive load but showed contrasting results for price perceptions. For the unattractive picture, cognitive load was found to be a moderator only when recipients had to infer the product price. Research limitations/implications-The present research emphasized the negative influence of attractive pictures on functional verbal claims and the moderating role of cognitive load on pictorial stimuli either acting as peripheral or central cues in the persuasive process. Practical implications-Practitioners may want to consider that an attractive picture in advertising is not always the best route for persuasion, especially when the verbal ad content emphasizes the product's properties. Originality/value-The present study provides new insights regarding the role of pictures in advertising persuasive effectiveness. Until now, no research had addressed the extent to which the presence of a picture could affect processing of an ad's verbal claims. Additionally, the present study expands research on persuasive communication and affirms the necessity of more intensively investigating the role of pictures in advertising under the rubric of information processing level.
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Contributor : Thierry Meyer Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, January 27, 2021 - 10:08:46 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, November 3, 2021 - 6:32:24 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Wednesday, April 28, 2021 - 6:28:36 PM


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Marine Kergoat, Thierry Meyer, Alain Mérot. Picture-based persuasion in advertising: the impact of attractive pictures on verbal ad's content. Journal of Consumer Marketing, Emerald, 2017, 34 (7), pp.00 - 00. ⟨10.1108/JCM-01-2016-1691⟩. ⟨hal-01629910⟩



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