Bilingualism and the Emotional Intensity of Advertising Language

Stefano Puntoni, Erasmus University, The Netherlands
Bart De Langhe, Erasmus University, The Netherlands
Stijn van Osselaer, Erasmus University, The Netherlands
This paper contributes to current understanding of language effects in advertising by uncovering a previously ignored mechanism shaping consumer response to an increasingly globalized marketplace. We propose a language-specific episodic trace theory of language emotionality to explain how language influences the perceived emotionality of marketing communications. Due to the language specificity of episodic memory and the difference between L1 and L2 in frequency of use, we predict that bilingual consumers tend to experience more intense emotions for marketing messages (e.g. slogans) presented in L1 than in L2. A series of experiments provides support for the theory.
[ to cite ]:
Stefano Puntoni, Bart De Langhe, and Stijn van Osselaer (2009) ,"Bilingualism and the Emotional Intensity of Advertising Language", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 36, eds. Ann L. McGill and Sharon Shavitt, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 701-702.