The role of narratives in the advertising of experiential services

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108 Citations (SciVal)


Service researchers have postulated that for many services, from the customer's point of view, the service experience is the key perceptual event. For portraying and conveying experiences, narrative forms of communication tend to be uniquely effective. This experimental study examined whether consumer expertise interferes with the relative effectiveness of story-based appeals in print advertisements portraying experiential services. This study also sought insight into consumers' affective responses to service ads, a nascent area of inquiry. Overall, this study's results suggest that consumers with relatively low familiarity with a service category might prefer appeals based on stories to appeals based on lists of service attributes. This relative advantage of narrative ads might be magnified when the novice consumer is in a happy rather than sad mood while encoding the information in the ad. Consumers with relatively high familiarity with the focal service category, however, might be unaffected by the format of the information presentation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-45
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Service Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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