Journal of Advertising Research - December 2012
Download JAR

Celebrating 50 years, the Journal of Advertising Research 50th Anniversary Special Edition is packed with analysis and insights from over 40 internationally renowned academics and industry leaders.

December 2012, Volume 52, No. 4
Journal of Advertising Research: What We Know About Social Media

    ARF Members can access full text of JAR articles, log in via My ARF »
Not a Member? Subscribe to the Journal of Advertising Research »

What We Know About Social Media
Geoffrey Precourt

Mind Over Metrics:
The Dog Ate My Analysis: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Marketing Analytics
Pat LaPointe

Marketing Matters:
Are You Ready for the Next Big Thing? New Media Is Dead! Long Live New Media!
Jenni Romaniuk

Digital Primer:
The Role of Visual Attention in Internet Advertising: Eleven Questions and a Score of Answers
Adam S. Greenberg

The Power of Citizen-Group Public-Policy Advertising: Messages Don’t Need Third-Party Validation to Increase Salience among Pockets of Voters
Daniel Bergan and Genevieve Risner
Issue advertisements are advertisements designed to change public opinion about a social issue rather than advocate or oppose a candidate or ballot question or sell a product or service. What effect do these advertisements have on perceived importance of the advertised issue and attitudes and knowledge about the featured policy? Results from an online experiment studying the effect of online issue advertisements suggest that issue advertisements can increase the salience of and knowledge about an issue. Issue advertisements can also persuade about the merits of a policy but only among individuals without attachments to major political parties.

 The Big Picture for Large-Screen Television Viewing: For Both Programming and Advertising, Audiences Are More Attentive, More Absorbed, and Less Critical
Michael D. McNiven, Dean Krugman, and Spencer F. Tinkham
Large-screen televisions have gained prominence in the marketplace. Focus groups and a national survey were used to investigate viewing of large-screen televisions as they relate to attitudes toward advertising and the way advertising and programming are viewed. Results indicate that larger screens positively impact how advertising and television programming are consumed. Large-screen television viewers were less skeptical of advertising than small-screen viewers; more positive toward advertising; and paid more attention to both commercials and programming. Also, large-screen viewers were more absorbed in television programming—a phenomenon that mediates the impact of screen size on attention, evaluation, and skepticism toward television advertising.

What We Know About Social Media

The Power of Evil: The Damage of Negative Social-Media Strongly Outweigh Positive Contributions
Marcel Corstjens and Andris Umblijs
Media activities generated by consumers or communities that are neither paid for nor induced by brand owners are claimed to have a potentially game-changing impact on communication and brand building. In this study, the authors propose a rigorous methodology to assess the impact of this type of social media activities on the actual performance of brands in the market. The article begins by developing a four-step process to condense the complex reality of micro-social-media events for a brand into a manageable set of social media indicators (SMI). These SMI subsequently are used as a subset of the drivers, together with more traditional marketing-mix elements—in a general market-response model—to estimate their relative impact on brand performance in the market. This methodology is illustrated with two real-world examples—one in the market for flat-screen-television market and the other in the set of Internet broadband-service providers.

Empowering Online Advertisements by Empowering Viewers with the Right to Choose: The Relative Effectiveness of Skippable Video Advertisements on YouTube
Max Pashkevich, Sundar Dorai-Raj, Melanie Kellar, and Dan Zigmond
In 2010, YouTube introduced TrueView in-stream advertising—online video advertisements that allowed the user to skip directly to the desired video content after five seconds of viewing. Google sought to compare these “skippable” in-stream advertisements to the conventional (non-skippable) in-stream video advertising formats, using a new advertising effectiveness metric based on the propensity to search for terms related to advertising content. Google’s findings indicated that skippable video advertisements may be as effective on a per-impression basis as traditional video advertisements. In addition, data from randomized experiments showed a strong implied viewer preference for the skippable advertisements. Taken together, these results suggest that formats like TrueView in-stream advertisements can improve the viewing experience for users without sacrificing advertising value for advertisers or content owners.

Word-of-Mouth Advocacy: A New Key to Advertising Effectiveness
Ed Keller and Brad Fay
Marketers are increasingly focused on social marketing, encouraging consumers to share content as well as recommendations, seeking more emphasis on consumer “expressions” and not just “impressions.” But how should expressions be achieved and measured? The authors argue for a holistic approach, one which recognizes that consumer expressions occur most often face-to-face and are not primarily the purview of online social media.
Given research that demonstrates a powerful relationship between word-of-mouth and paid advertising, the authors suggest the need for a new advertising model, one in which a key goal of the ad is to foster conversation; the conversation then persuades the prospect, which leads to purchase.

Seeding Viral Content: How the Quality of a Viral Message Drives the Diffusion of Online Videos
Yuping Liu-Thompkins
Online viral campaigns require a seeding strategy that involves choosing the first generation consumers to spread a viral message to. Building on social-capital theory and social-network analysis, this research examine key aspects of the seeding strategy by tracking the diffusion of 101 new videos published on YouTube. The results show that the need for a “big-seed” strategy (i.e., using many seed consumers) depends on message quality. Furthermore, one should choose consumers who have strong ties with the advertiser and who also have strong influence on others, rather than simply wider reach. Among seed consumers, they should share a moderate amount of interest overlap instead of being too homogeneous or heterogeneous as a group.

Digital and Social Media in the Purchase-Decision Process: A Special Report from the Advertising Research Foundation
Todd Powers, Dorothy Advincula, Manila Austin, Stacy Graiko, and Jasper Snyder
This study is an excerpt from a larger work that explores changes in the purchase process for consumer goods (automobiles, electronics, and groceries) brought about by digital and social media. Commissioned by the Advertising Research Foundation; conducted by Communispace, comScore, Converseon, and Firefly Millward Brown; sponsored by General Motors, Google, Kraft, Motorola, and Young & Rubicam; and with guidance from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, the qualitative, quantitative, and social listening research was conducted in 2011. Findings indicate that digital and social media have empowered consumers and that brands have an important role in facilitating conversations among consumers and themselves, openly sharing the values that will help consumers connect with them and with one another.


Subscribe to JAR

There’s advertising theory. And there’s advertising practice. With JAR you get the best of both worlds.
Subscribe Now »
Get Free Content Alerts »


"JAR keeps us grounded—years of valuable experience written and shared with the industry to help keep us focused on more meaningful marketing and research practices."
Kate Sirkin – Starcom MediaVest Group