Regulatory Focus As a Moderator of Persuasion in Message Framing: a Test of Three Accounts

Sunghwan Yi, University of Guelph, Canada
Hans Baumgartner, Pennsylvania State University
A review of previous literature shows that there are at least three ways in which regulatory focus may be related to message framing. Specifically, three opposing accounts propose that persuasion is enhanced when there is a fit between a person’s regulatory focus (a) and the overall valence of the message (i.e., positive vs. negative valence), (b) and the outcome focus of the message (i.e., gain vs. loss anchor), (c) and the type of benefit or harm emphasized (i.e., achievement vs. security), respectively. In order to resolve these inconsistencies, we used a 2 (overall valence) by 2 (outcome focus) by 2 (type of benefit emphasized) factorial design. Results generally supported the hypothesis that persuasion is increased when chronic regulatory focus fits the overall valence of the message.
[ to cite ]:
Sunghwan Yi and Hans Baumgartner (2008) ,"Regulatory Focus As a Moderator of Persuasion in Message Framing: a Test of Three Accounts", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35, eds. Angela Y. Lee and Dilip Soman, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research.