Increasing power and preventing pain: The moderating role of self-construal in advertising message framing

Yongjun Sung, Sejung Marina Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


This research investigates how an individual's self-construal and self-regulatory focus interplay in determining advertising message persuasiveness. In Experiment 1, we examine the moderating role of an individual's chronically accessible self-construal with respect to regulatory focus. The results show that individuals with a dominant independent self-construal exhibit more positive attitudes toward a promotion-focused advertising message and the advocated brand, whereas individuals with a prevailing interdependent self-construal show more favorable attitudes toward a prevention-focused advertising message and the associated brand. While replicating Experiment 1, Experiment 2 lends further support for the observed relationship by temporarily priming self-construal through a series of contextual advertising images involving individual and team sports events. The findings reveal that individuals who are primed first by viewing individual sports events later evaluate the promotion-focused advertising message and the brand more positively; in contrast, those exposed to team sports events display more favorable evaluations of the prevention-focused advertising and attitude toward the brand. This suggests that situationally primed self-construal, in conjunction with regulatory focus, has a similar impact on advertising message effectiveness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-86
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Advertising
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Apr 1
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Communication
  • Marketing


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