University of Twente Student Theses


Overdosed on happiness : give me one more shot and I’ll buy your product! The influence of positive and negative emotions in advertising

Stout, J.H. (2014) Overdosed on happiness : give me one more shot and I’ll buy your product! The influence of positive and negative emotions in advertising.

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Abstract:Companies are spending billions of dollars to sell their products and services to consumers. Because of the growing competition and the small differences between products, promoting one’s products in an original way might even be more important than the specifications of the products itself. When designing advertising campaigns, the use of emotions can play a huge role. However, the impact of using negative emotions in advertising has been largely ignored, as no clear overview exists. An overview would be very helpful, as negative emotions might be used to enrich consumers’ experiences in advertising. The aim of the current research is to investigate which emotions are best suited when advertising for happy or anxious consumers. A total of 226 young consumers participated by filling in an online questionnaire. All of the participants were exposed to a fictional news story, which was specifically designed to give them either a feeling of happiness or a feeling of anxiety. Then, participants were asked to look at an advertisement. These advertisements were aimed at feeling sad, feeling happy or feeling anxious. This 2 x 3 between subjects design was used to measure multiple constructs. The dependent variables were the attitude towards the advertisement, the personal involvement with the advertisement and the purchase intention. For data analysis, a two-factor MANOVA with two pre ad emotions (happiness and anxiety) and three emotionally framed advertisements (happiness, anxiety and sadness) was performed on the three dependent variables. Results give clear evidence that happy consumers favor happy emotions in an advertisement. Furthermore, no significant differences were found when happy and anxious participants were exposed to a sad advertisement, or to an anxious advertisement. The results imply that consumers do not experience any differences when they are exposed to either a sad or an anxious advertisement. Furthermore, positive emotions like happiness seem to have a positive influence on the purchase intention. Future research is needed to complete a clear framework when using specific (negative) emotions in advertising. The results of the current study could be used to identify which emotions are suited when promoting products for consumers, for instance when they are watching a horror movie or a comedy movie.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
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