Date of Award

5-2012

Degree Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Mass Communication and Journalism

Committee Chair

Jun Heo

Committee Chair Department

Mass Communication and Journalism

Committee Member 2

Christopher Campbell

Committee Member 2 Department

Mass Communication and Journalism

Committee Member 3

Fei Xue

Committee Member 3 Department

Mass Communication and Journalism

Abstract

A cognitive process where audiences relate incoming information to themselves is self-referencing. Advertising practitioners often assume that the self-referencing strategy is one of the most persuasive advertising strategies. Since the self is one of the most well-developed and frequently used constructs in memory, self-referencing advertisements were expected to be more memorable and persuasive (Meyers-Levy & Peracchio, 1996). Further, this self-referencing strategy can result in different consequences of advertisements evaluation depending on which dimension of the self is activated, because the self is a multi-dimensional construct. The current study investigated different types of self-referencing based on temporal orientation of the self. Since the self can be differentiated based on its temporal orientation (past vs. future), self-referencing can be also differentiated depending on the specific facet of the self that is activated (Krishnamurthy & Sujan, 1999). Thus, this study developed interaction hypotheses that cultural orientation of individuals would influence the effects of temporal orientation of self-referencing. Specifically, it was hypothesized that individuals who are in short-term orientation culture would report a higher level of self-referencing and more positive evaluations of advertisements when they are exposed to retrospective self-referencing advertisements than anticipatory self-referencing advertisements. Conversely, it was hypothesized that individuals who are in long-term orientation culture would report a higher level of self-referencing and more positive evaluations of advertisements when they are exposed to anticipatory self-referencing advertisements than retrospective self-referencing advertisements. Additionally, the predictive role of self-referencing in evaluating an advertisement was hypothesized. The study was carried out on 175 undergraduate students from the United Sates and Korea. An AN OVA and a MANOVA were performed on the data to explore the relationship between two independent variables and their effects. There were significant interactions between cultural orientation of individuals and temporal orientation of selfreferencing, supporting all interaction hypotheses. Also, the predictive role of selfreferencing in advertisements was confirmed. The results indicate that cultural orientation of potential consumers is a significant element to be considered when using the self-referencing strategy. Also, the predictive role of the self-referencing strategy was supported. The more individuals self reference with an advertisement, the better evaluations of the advertisement are expected. This study extends international advertising literature by applying individuals' cultural orientation to explain the effects of self-referencing. Practical implications for international marketers were provided. lll

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