Leave Them Smiling: How Concretely Framing a Prosocial Goal Creates More Happiness

Melanie Rudd, University of Houston, USA
Jennifer Aaker, Stanford University, USA
Michael Norton, Harvard Business School, USA
Are some prosocial pursuits better able to increase personal happiness? We demonstrate that, contrary to people’s intuitions, performing a prosocial act with the concretely-framed goal of making someone smile (versus the abstractly-framed goal of making someone happy) boosts the giver’s happiness by shrinking the gap between their expectations and reality.
[ to cite ]:
Melanie Rudd, Jennifer Aaker, and Michael Norton (2013) ,"Leave Them Smiling: How Concretely Framing a Prosocial Goal Creates More Happiness", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 41, eds. Simona Botti and Aparna Labroo, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research.