Public communication campaigns are one of the instruments available in social marketing that could be used to successfully influence behaviors for the collective benefit. Designing an effective message is key to achieving an influence on individuals’ attitudes, intentions and behaviors. Healthy messages can be conveyed using Public Service Announcements (PSAs). Unfortunately, PSAs are broadcasted less often than common commercials. Therefore, the current small quantity of PSAs shown on television is not sufficient when compared to the quantity of commercial advertisements. A group often exposed to commercial advertisements and the related persuasive marketing techniques are children. Extensive research has been undertaken that focuses specifically on commercial advertisements, with a view to determining the best strategies and instruments suitable for conveying advertising messages that attract children’s attention and activate a memorization process. These strategies can be adapted to the field of PSAs to design effective social campaigns. Previous studies have focused on social advertisements targeted at young adults and adults, yet they neglect the key role that social advertising can play in disseminating useful information, changing, or preventing unhealthy habits and encouraging children to adopt good practices. The literature on PSAs or social marketing interventions aimed at children is limited; studies on the type of appeal that is more adequate for communicating social themes directly and efficaciously to them, as well as which relations and variables related to PSAs are useful in influencing children’s behavioral intention to adopt good practices are even more limited. To address this gap in the literature, three studies were conducted with Italian children aged 8 to 11. The World Health Organization states that an increase of childhood obesity and the number of youths smoking tobacco are both serious global issues. For this reason, two PSAs on the topic of healthy eating and two anti-smoking PSAs were chosen in the following studies. The first study sought to understand the impact of rational and emotional appeals on children’s attitude towards two PSAs that promoted eating fruits and vegetables. The aim of the second study was to compare the use of the humor appeal versus the use of the fear appeal in anti-smoking PSAs for children. In particular, it was examined whether different advertisement appeals (i.e., fear or humor appeals) had different effects on children’s affective reactions towards PSAs, on their beliefs about smoking, and on their behavioral intentions to smoke. The third study developed a model that addresses the direct effect of the children’s perceived likeability of PSAs, and the effect mediated by the positive emotions and PSA credibility on the children’s behavioral intention to eat fruits and vegetables.

Children's responses to social advertisements

Nicolini Valentina
2018

Abstract

Public communication campaigns are one of the instruments available in social marketing that could be used to successfully influence behaviors for the collective benefit. Designing an effective message is key to achieving an influence on individuals’ attitudes, intentions and behaviors. Healthy messages can be conveyed using Public Service Announcements (PSAs). Unfortunately, PSAs are broadcasted less often than common commercials. Therefore, the current small quantity of PSAs shown on television is not sufficient when compared to the quantity of commercial advertisements. A group often exposed to commercial advertisements and the related persuasive marketing techniques are children. Extensive research has been undertaken that focuses specifically on commercial advertisements, with a view to determining the best strategies and instruments suitable for conveying advertising messages that attract children’s attention and activate a memorization process. These strategies can be adapted to the field of PSAs to design effective social campaigns. Previous studies have focused on social advertisements targeted at young adults and adults, yet they neglect the key role that social advertising can play in disseminating useful information, changing, or preventing unhealthy habits and encouraging children to adopt good practices. The literature on PSAs or social marketing interventions aimed at children is limited; studies on the type of appeal that is more adequate for communicating social themes directly and efficaciously to them, as well as which relations and variables related to PSAs are useful in influencing children’s behavioral intention to adopt good practices are even more limited. To address this gap in the literature, three studies were conducted with Italian children aged 8 to 11. The World Health Organization states that an increase of childhood obesity and the number of youths smoking tobacco are both serious global issues. For this reason, two PSAs on the topic of healthy eating and two anti-smoking PSAs were chosen in the following studies. The first study sought to understand the impact of rational and emotional appeals on children’s attitude towards two PSAs that promoted eating fruits and vegetables. The aim of the second study was to compare the use of the humor appeal versus the use of the fear appeal in anti-smoking PSAs for children. In particular, it was examined whether different advertisement appeals (i.e., fear or humor appeals) had different effects on children’s affective reactions towards PSAs, on their beliefs about smoking, and on their behavioral intentions to smoke. The third study developed a model that addresses the direct effect of the children’s perceived likeability of PSAs, and the effect mediated by the positive emotions and PSA credibility on the children’s behavioral intention to eat fruits and vegetables.
Children, Social Advertising, Social Marketing, Advertising Appeals, Health Food Promotion, Anti-smoking Advertisements, Attitude, Behavioral Intentions, Likeability
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11562/979080
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