The authors develop several hypotheses regarding the integration of moment-to-moment emotional responses into overall ad judgments, using the psychological literature dealing with people's preferences for sequences of hedonic outcomes, and they conduct three studies to test these predictions. The results of Study 1 indicate that consumers' global assessments of extended affective episodes elicited by advertisements are dominated by the peak emotional experience and the final moment of the series and also are correlated with the pace at which momentary affective reactions improve over time. Ad duration is related only weakly to overall ad judgments, though longer advertisements have an advantage as long as they build toward a peak emotional experience. In Study 2, the authors replicate these findings under more realistic viewing conditions and demonstrate that the results cannot be attributed solely to memory artifacts that are based on recency. Study 3 implicates adaptation as a possible explanation for the preference for delayed peaks and high ends and further explains the weak effects of ad duration by showing experimentally that longer advertisements can both enhance and depress ad judgments depending on how duration affects the peak emotional experience and the final moment.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Business and International Management
- Economics and Econometrics