Response efficacy : the key to minimizing rejection and maximizing acceptance of emotion-based anti-speeding messages

Lewis, Ioni M., Watson, Barry C., & White, Katherine M. (2010) Response efficacy : the key to minimizing rejection and maximizing acceptance of emotion-based anti-speeding messages. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 42(2), pp. 459-467.

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This study sought to improve understanding of the persuasive process of emotion-based appeals not only in relation to negative, fear-based appeals but also for appeals based upon positive emotions. In particular, the study investigated whether response efficacy, as a cognitive construct, mediated outcome measures of message effectiveness in terms of both acceptance and rejection of negative and positive emotion-based messages. Licensed drivers (N = 406) participated via the completion of an on-line survey. Within the survey, participants received either a negative (fear-based) appeal or one of the two possible positive appeals (pride or humor-based). Overall, the study's findings confirmed the importance of emotional and cognitive components of persuasive health messages and identified response efficacy as a key cognitive construct influencing the effectiveness of not only fear-based messages but also positive emotion-based messages. Interestingly, however, the results suggested that response efficacy's influence on message effectiveness may differ for positive and negative emotion-based appeals such that significant indirect (and mediational) effects were found with both acceptance and rejection of the positive appeals yet only with rejection of the fear-based appeal. As such, the study's findings provide an important extension to extant literature and may inform future advertising message design.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 27972
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: road safety advertising, emotional appeals, anti-speeding messages, response efficacy, message acceptance, message rejection
DOI: 10.1016/j.aap.2009.09.008
ISSN: 0001-4575
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd
Deposited On: 14 Oct 2009 23:24
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 14:02

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