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Rational framing is effective in anti-smoking messages, not military message

Shalagh Frantz, Sara Veltri, Kristie Payment
Ohio Northern University

Using a 2 x 2 within-subjects design, the present study examined whether effectiveness rating of an anti-smoking commercial and a military recruitment commercial would vary depending on whether the commercials were framed with an emotional or a rational appeal.  Thirty-two undergraduates (11 male and 21 female) participated in the study.  Results indicated a main effect of framing of commercial, but no main effect of the focus of the commercial.  Specifically, emotionally-framed commercials were found to be significantly more effective than rationally-framed commercials.  An interaction was also found indicating that when a rational framing is used, anti-smoking commercials are rated as significantly more effective than military recruitment commercials, while no such difference in effectiveness occurs when the commercials are emotionally-framed.  These findings indicate that emotionally framed messages play a role in the success of the persuasive techniques used in television commercials.

Association for Psychological Science, Chicago, IL