THE STOPPING POWER OF ADVERTISING: MEASURES AND EFFECTS OF VISUAL COMPLEXITY

Published on Sep 1, 2010in Journal of Marketing9.462
· DOI :10.1509/JMKG.74.5.48
Rik Pieters73
Estimated H-index: 73
(Tilburg University),
Michel Wedel82
Estimated H-index: 82
(UMD: University of Maryland, College Park),
Rajeev Batra37
Estimated H-index: 37
(UM: University of Michigan)
Sources
Abstract
Abstract Advertising needs to capture consumers' attention in likable ways, and the visual complexity of advertising plays a central role in this regard. Yet ideas about visual complexity effects conflict, and objective measures of complexity are rare. The authors distinguish two types of visual complexity, differentiate them from the difficulty of comprehending advertising, and propose objective measures for each. Advertisements are visually complex when they contain dense perceptual features (“feature complexity”) and/or when they have an elaborate creative design (“design complexity”). An analysis of 249 advertisements that were tested with eye-tracking shows that, as the authors hypothesize, feature complexity hurts attention to the brand and attitude toward the ad, whereas design complexity helps attention to both the pictorial and the advertisement as a whole, its comprehensibility, and attitude toward the ad. This is important because design complexity is under direct control of the advertiser. The...
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There is much evidence that the presence of a feature advertisement can increase the sales and market share of the featured product. However, little is known about how feature ad characteristics (e.g., size, color, and location of the advertisement) affect the sales outcomes and how the effects take place. Prior research has predicted that feature advertisements lead to behavioral outcomes through their effect on consumers' attention. Building on this idea, the authors propose a Bayesian statist...
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