Deception by Implication: An Experimental Investigation
Journal of Consumer Research Vol. 14, No. 4, pp. 483-494
12 Pages Posted: 30 May 2016
Date Written: March 1, 1988
A computer-based measurement procedure was developed to assess the deceptive effects of advertising claims. The study investigated various message forms identified in past research as having the potential to deceive the consumer by implying unrealistically high levels of brand attribute performance. Deception was assessed by comparing consumer responses to the questionable claims against responses to the presentation of no attribute information and true information. Results across a set of computer-constructed ads for hypothetical ibuprophen-based brands of pain reliever showed that expansions of literally true claims, and, to a lesser extent, qualified expansionary claims, increased false brand attribute beliefs, affect, and purchase intentions in comparison to the control conditions. Implications for the detection of deceptive advertising claims are drawn.
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