Attributes Versus Benefits: The Role of Construal Levels and Appeal Type on the Persuasiveness of Marketing Messages

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2015
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Jose Mauro Hernandez
WRIGHT, S. A.
FERMINIANO, R. F.
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Journal of Advertising
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HERNANDEZ, J. M.; WRIGHT, S. A.; FERMINIANO, R. F. Attributes Versus Benefits: The Role of Construal Levels and Appeal Type on the Persuasiveness of Marketing Messages. Journal of Advertising, v. 44, n. 3, p. 243-253, jul. 2015.
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© 2015, American Academy of Advertising.When should marketers emphasize attributes or benefits in their communications? Grounded in construal-level theory, the results of four studies suggest that when a purchase is planned for the distant future or when construal levels are high, benefit-based appeals are more persuasive than attribute-based appeals. By contrast, when a purchase is planned for the near future or when consumers are predisposed to low construal levels, attribute-based appeals are equally as persuasive as benefit-based appeals. However, when low construal levels are temporarily induced using a mind-set manipulation, attribute-based appeals are found to be more persuasive than benefit-based appeals. Moreover, we demonstrate how these effects occur only when processing fluency is uninhibited. This research establishes an important link between these appeal types and construal levels, subsequently demonstrating when marketers should use these appeals.

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