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Original Article

Consumer response to different advertising appeals for new products: The moderating inuence of branding strategy and product category involvement
Received (in revised form): 16th June 2010

Nathalie Dens
recently obtained her PhD in applied economics in the marketing department from the University of Antwerp. She has published a number of articles on communication effects for different types of advertising appeals. Her research interests, in particular, focus on the effectiveness of advertising for different branding strategies.

Patrick De Pelsmacker
is Professor of Marketing at the University of Antwerp and Ghent University. His research focuses on the study of marketing communication, advertising effectiveness, social marketing and consumer behaviour in general.

ABSTRACT The aim of this study is to investigate interaction effects between branding strategy (new brand versus established brand), advertising execution strategies (informational, positive emotional and negative emotional) and product category involvement (low and high) on consumers attitudes towards the product, purchase intention and the (parent) brand. Two analyses are performed in which involvement is manipulated at product category and at individual level. The results show that in general, line extensions of established brands are preferred over new brands. Furthermore, advertising strategy has little impact on consumer responses to line extensions of familiar brands. The type of advertising strategy used does have a signicant impact on product and brand attitude and purchase intention for new brands, where negative emotional appeals lead to signicantly more negative responses. The results are further moderated by product category involvement. Informational appeals score especially well in high-involvement situations, whereas positive emotional appeals perform better in low-involvement situations. Interestingly, the differences between advertising appeals in both low- and high-involvement conditions are greater for new brands than for extensions.
Correspondence: Nathalie Dens Marketing Department, Faculty of Applied Economics, University of Antwerp, Prinsstraat 13, ofce Z.306, Antwerp 2000, Belgium E-mail: nathalie.dens@ua.ac.be

Journal of Brand Management (2010) 18, 5065. doi:10.1057/bm.2010.22 Keywords: advertising; new brands; line extensions; familiarity; involvement

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INTRODUCTION
For most rms, growth is driven by the successful development and marketing of new products and/or services. However, almost half of all newly introduced products fail within ve years (Taylor and Bearden, 2003). Companies often try to link an established brand name to a new product (that is, extension), hoping that the parent brand reputation will leverage the new introduction (DelVecchio and Smith, 2005). However, little experimental research has actually addressed the comparative potential of new brands versus extensions (McCarthy et al, 2001). Advertising is considered an important determinant of new product success and extension acceptance (Reddy et al, 1994; Nan, 2006). The role of attitudes has long been recognized as a signicant factor in consumer decision making (Dickinson and Heath, 2006). Considerable research has shown that consumers often integrate their attitudes towards the ad for a product into their evaluations of the product and brand (Mitchell and Olson, 1981; Nan, 2006; Bergkvist and Rossiter, 2008). However, it remains unclear exactly how this advertising must be made operational. Studies on how different advertising strategies inuence product and brand evaluations for different branding strategies for new products are scarce. In order to make a contribution to the debate over extension superiority, we conduct an experiment to test the relative appeal of new brands and line extensions. The main contribution of this article is that we study the differential impact of different advertising appeals (informational, positive emotional, negative emotional) between new brands and line extensions under differing involvement levels (low versus high involvement). To our knowledge, the simultaneous interactions of advertising strategy, brand strategy and product category involvement on new product and brand evaluations have never been included

in a single study. We report the results of two analyses in which we manipulate advertising strategies and branding strategies, as well as use different conceptualizations of product category involvement (at product category or individual level). The rst analysis, in which we manipulate product category involvement at product category level, can be seen as a test of the Rossiter-Percy Grid (Rossiter and Percy, 1997; Bergkvist and Rossiter, 2008), for new brands versus extensions. In the second analysis, we replicate the design of the rst analysis, but with a conceptualization of involvement at individual level within the same product category, so as to further isolate involvement effects from other confounding product category differences.

LITERATURE REVIEW AND HYPOTHESES


Consumer evaluations of new brands versus extensions
The frequent use of extension strategies is based on an underlying assumption that consumers prefer extensions over new brands (McCarthy et al, 2001). Extensions have been shown to benet from a quality transfer from the well-known brand name (Aaker and Keller, 1990; Dens and De Pelsmacker, 2008). Smith and Parks (1992) ndings indicate that brand extensions capture greater market share and realize greater advertising efciency than individual (new) brands. Extension strategies result in increased positive affect and decreased perceived risk in comparison to new brands (Lai, 2006). McCarthy et al (2001) found, for example, that extensions enjoy more positive attitudes than a new brand name. Strong brands will lead consumers to react more favourably to marketing activities (Hoefer and Keller, 2003). As the existing brands used in this study benet from a favourable image and t closely to the new extension, we generally expect more

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positive responses towards line extensions of familiar brands than towards new brands. We hypothesize: Hypothesis 1: Line extensions of established brands will engender a more positive attitude towards the newly introduced product (Apr), a higher purchase intention (Pi), and a more positive attitude toward the brand (Ab) than new brands.

Different advertising appeals: The moderating role of branding strategy


In addition, we expected to nd an interaction between the branding strategy and the advertising execution strategy (appeal type) on consumer evaluations of the advertised product and brand. Parent brand knowledge moderates the effects of advertising strategy on attitude towards the brand (Stammerjohan et al, 2005). Several authors have examined the effects of brand familiarity on response to stimuli (Campbell and Keller, 2003), nding that high familiarity actually limits advertising effectiveness (Stammerjohan et al, 2005). Highly familiar brands are characterized by well-established and relatively stable attitudes, which will not likely be affected by a single advertisement (Derbaix, 1995; Stammerjohan et al, 2005). This is because people will be more inuenced by previous opinions than by new information (Weilbacher, 2003). Even when these brands offer a new product, we expect consumers to transfer their preexisting attitudes to the extension. According to categorization theory, people faced with an evaluative task will rst attempt to classify the object in a certain category. If the classication is successful, affect associated with the category will be transferred to the object (Fiske and Pavelchak, 1986). In the case of highly familiar brands, the brand name can serve as the category cue. Indeed, Gielens and Steenkamp (2007) state

that when a high-reputation brand name is extended to a new product for which attributes are difcult to observe before consumption, consumers plausibly believe that the extension is also of high quality. Research into extension evaluation has often pointed out that parent brand associations are a major determining factor of product evaluation, as consumers often believe that an extension possesses the typical attributes or benets of the parent brand (Aaker and Keller, 1990; Nan, 2006). Hence, they will rely less on the advertisement to form an opinion of the extension, and therefore the advertising strategy will not strongly impact extension evaluation. On the other hand, research has shown that for a new brand, classical conditioning and direct affect transfer explain the strong link between ad-evoked feelings and brandrelated evaluations (Mitchell and Olson, 1981; Gresham and Shimp, 1985; Homer, 2006). As consumers are, by denition, unfamiliar with a new brand, they do not possess readily accessible knowledge about it in memory. In this case, evaluation of the new product and brand will be primarily based on the advertisement. Therefore, we expect greater differences in product and brand evaluations for the different ads for new brands than for extensions. Advertising execution strategies can be roughly divided into informational versus transformational/emotional appeals. Informational appeals inform consumers of one or more key benets about the advertised product and/or brand, whereas emotional appeals are aimed at evoking feelings or emotions in consumers ( Johar and Sirgy, 1991). Negative feelings in advertising, such as fear, are frequently used to attract attention to the message and induce adbased persuasion (Shehryar and Hunt, 2005). We expect that when consumers are rst introduced to new products, they will be motivated to learn about the product and its features to make an evaluation of it.

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Hence, an informational appeal providing this information should generally be positively regarded. Several studies also provide support for the persuasive impact of positive feelings in advertising (Aaker et al, 1986; Geuens and De Pelsmacker, 1998). Positive emotional appeals generate interest in the advertisement, reduce irritation, and lead to positive judgments of the advertised message and higher purchase intentions of the advertised product (Geuens and De Pelsmacker, 1998; Morris et al, 2002). Positive advertising affect may also engender positive communication effects by inuencing the direction of cognitive responses (Petty et al, 1991). Negative affect, on the other hand, has been shown to debilitate ad evaluations (Russo France et al, 1994). Particularly in the case of consumer products, studies exploring negative feelings in advertising, such as provocation or disgust, have mostly found negative attitudinal effects (De Pelsmacker and Van den Bergh, 1996; Dens et al, 2008). We hypothesize: Hypothesis 2: The positive inuence of an informational and positive emotional appeal compared to a negative emotional appeal in terms of attitude towards the advertised product (Apr), purchase intention (Pi) and attitude toward the brand (Ab) will be greater for new brands than for line extensions.

The moderating role of product category involvement


Involvement generally refers to a persons perceived relevance of the focal object based on inherent needs, values and interests (Zaichkowsky, 1994). According to the Elaboration Likelihood Model (ELM), a persons level of involvement during message processing is considered a critical factor in determining the route to persuasion (Petty et al, 2005). The ELM (Petty et al,

1983; Petty et al, 2005) and the HeuristicSystematic Model (Chaiken et al, 1989) prescribe that persuasion will occur via a central (systematic) route when an individuals motivation, ability and opportunity to process are higher. When either of these factors are absent, audiences will revert to peripheral processing of the message, for example based on heuristic cues (for example, music, how do I feel about it?, celebrity endorsement, number of arguments). High product category involvement tends to engender central processing, meaning consumers will exert the cognitive effort required to evaluate the issue-relevant arguments presented to them (Brown et al, 1998). Under such conditions, consumers tend to focus on highly diagnostic cues such as attribute and performance information to evaluate products. The cognitive resource matching (CRM) hypothesis predicts that a message will enhance persuasion if there is a match between a consumers processing level and the execution (Keller and Block, 1997; Coulter and Punj, 2004). Viewers who are highly involved become motivated and able to enter into a functional congruity process (Johar and Sirgy, 1991). Under these conditions, an informational advertising execution appeals more to the central route of persuasion. An informational advertising execution typically requires a high amount of cognitive resources to be processed in full. When elaboration is likely to be high, this may match the amount of resources that consumers are willing to spend to process the message through the central route of persuasion. This should result in positive brand evaluations (Coulter, 2005). Brown et al (1998), for example, have argued that, in general, ad-evoked feelings have relatively weak effects under high involvement and conditions that encourage cognitive elaboration, because highly involved viewers are likely to engage in greater message elaboration and critical evaluation of

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advertisements, and to experience less affective responses. This is in line with ndings of previous research that a utilitarian appeal is effective when consumer involvement is high (Erevelles, 1998). In their well-know grid, Rossiter and Percy (1997), for example, argue that an information strategy is best suited for products that are highly involving, especially when the products are also informational. On the basis of these ndings, we expect that for highinvolvement new products, informational appeals will perform better than (positive and negative) emotional appeals. Following the rationale leading up to Hypothesis 2, differences between ads are expected to be greater for new brands than for established brands. Therefore, the interaction between advertising strategy and product category involvement should be further moderated by brand strategy. Hypothesis 3a: In high product category involvement conditions, an informational advertising appeal will outperform emotional executions (both positive and negative), but the difference will be smaller for line extensions than for new brands. In contrast, in a low product category involvement situation, the newness of the product may fail to create enough motivation for processing. Low product category involvement generally induces the peripheral route to persuasion in which consumers evaluate products based on some supercial analysis of readily available and salient cues in the stimuli presented to them (Coulter, 2005). If the informational appeal requires more cognitive resources to process than consumers are willing to spend, this will result in incomplete, or supercial message processing (Meyers-Levy and Malaviya, 1999). As an informational appeal will typically require more resources to process than consumers may be will be

willing to spend, CRM predicts that this may lead to frustration, disinterest and other negative reactions. Low audience involvement forces the audience to make an evaluation of the product based on self-congruity ( Johar and Sirgy, 1991). Following the peripheral route, attitude change is related to positive or negative associations with the stimulus (Petty et al, 1983). In this case, positive emotional advertising as a peripheral cue might work best, because the positive affect induced by the ad will easily transfer to the product and brand (Lutz, 1985). Rossiter and Percy (1997) indeed argue that emotional authenticity strategies work best for low-involvement (and mainly transformational) products. Negative feelings towards the ad (how do I feel about it) in a low-involvement situation will result in negative attitudes towards the brand. Again, following the rationale leading up to Hypothesis 2, differences between ads are expected to be greater for new brands than for established brands. Hypothesis 3b: In low product category involvement conditions, a positive emotional appeal will outperform an informational or negative emotional appeal, but the difference will be smaller for line extensions than for new brands.

METHODOLOGY
To test our hypotheses, we set up a 3 (advertisement: informational, positive emotional, negative emotional) 2 (brand: new brand, established brandline extension) 2 (product category involvement: low, high) full factorial between-subjects designs.

Design and pretests


In the design, we conceptualized product category involvement by the product

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category of the advertised new product. This allowed us to manipulate involvement, ensuring substantial differences between the conditions. Although some researchers have argued that for any particular product class levels of involvement will differ across consumers and depending on the situation, this type of aggregate analysis has been conducted in previous product and advertising research (Chaudhuri, 2000). Involvement results from the interaction of individuals with products (Nkwocha et al, 2005). Therefore, both products and individuals are important aspects of involvement and both are equally worthy of study. Moreover, it is reasonable to expect managers to have easier implementation of the product category involvement concept at product level than the individual involvement concept. On the basis of consumers reported levels of product category involvement in a pretest (n = 25), we selected candy bars and laptop computers as product categories for the tested new products. In addition, in Analysis 2, we analyse product category involvement at an individual level by median splitting reported involvement levels. Before the main experiment, the advertising images and slogans were pretested (n = 52) to represent the right manipulation of evoked feelings. In order to be as realistic as possible, we used real brand names with which consumers were highly familiar for the established brand conditions. As such, we ensured that consumers had most likely formed some sort of schema about the brands. The test brands were selected based on a series of pretests (n = 2530) to ensure they were highly familiar to consumers and had a favourable overall quality image. The established brands chosen on the basis of the pretests were HP (Hewlett Packard) laptops and Mars candy bars. For the new brands, we pretested three ctitious brand names per product, and selected the one with the best perceived t (perceived familiarity was very low for all the new brand

names). We selected the names Vision computers and Mamba candy bars. The nal test advertisements (12 in total) were created by VVL.BBDO, a professional advertising agency (see Appendix, for examples).

Main experiment
Through an online survey, 751 respondents were randomly divided across treatments. Respondents were selected from a consumer panel to be representative of the Belgian population in terms of gender (50.1 per cent), age (35.3 per cent 1834 years, 25.7 per cent 3544 years, 39.0 per cent 4564 years), education (55.3 per cent higher educated), and social class (approx. 25 per cent in each of four classes) from an opt-in internet consumer panel. The questionnaire started with a few introductory questions on brand familiarity (familiar, informed, know a great deal, experienced buyer; = 0.977) (Oliver and Bearden, 1985) and quality (high quality, likely to try, superior product; = 0.949) (Keller and Aaker, 1992) and for three different brands to mask the brand under study. Product category involvement was assessed next (means a lot, important, matters to me, important decision, decision requires a lot of thought, lot to lose by choosing poorly; = 0.952) (Mittal, 1995). Participants then saw one of the test advertisements, after which they rated the manipulation check of ad-evoked positive feelings (loving, warmth, tenderness, cosiness, positive feeling; = 0.965) and negative feelings (sad, disappointed, worried, frustrated, irritated, negative feeling; = 0.961) on separate scales. Respondents were then asked their attitude towards the advertised new product/extension (good, positive, like; = 0.958), purchase intention (possible, likely, probable; = 0.950) and attitude toward the brand (good, positive, like; = 0.971) (Oliver and Bearden, 1985; Faseur and Geuens, 2006). All items were measured on seven-point semantic

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Table 1: Analysis 1 mean scores per treatment Product brand appeal Laptop computer New brand Info (62) 4.62 3.71 4.91 Pos (61) 4.29 3.67 4.61 Neg (63) 3.36 2.70 3.86 Line extension Info (63) 4.90 4.21 4.87 Pos (67) 4.74 4.00 4.71 Neg (61) 4.43 3.96 4.75 Info (63) 3.76 3.80 4.37 New brand Pos (62) 4.14 4.13 4.53 Neg (62) 3.29 3.39 4.04 Candy bar Line extension Info (62) 4.74 4.53 4.87 Pos (63) 4.53 4.06 4.94 Neg (62) 4.24 4.27 4.63

n Apr Pi Apb

differential scales. Scores on different items were averaged to compute the construct scores.

Manipulation checks
Product category involvement The measure of product category involvement showed that candy bars (M = 3.33) did indeed elicit signicantly lower involvement than laptop computers (M = 5.78) (t(612) = 29.13, P < 0.001). Brand familiarity As in the pretest, results showed that respondents were signicantly more familiar with the two established brands (MMars = 4.76, MHP = 5.05) than with the new brands (MMamba = 1.21, MVision = 1.68) (F(3, 747) = 583.499, P < 0.001).

The negative emotional ad (MPC = 4.93, MCB = 4.93) evoked signicantly more negative feelings than both the informational (MPC = 2.56, MCB = 2.90) and the positive emotional ad (MPC = 2.56, MCB = 2.04) (P < 0.001). Therefore, we concluded that our ad manipulations were successful.

RESULTS
Analysis 1: Results
Three 3 2 2 ANOVAs were run, with attitude towards the advertised product (Apr), new product purchase intention (Pi) and attitude toward the (parent) brand (Ab) as dependent variables. For the latter variable, we controlled for pre-existing brand attitudes by using the quality pre-measure as a covariate (the covariate was positive and signicant, F(1, 738) = 173.540, P 0.001). Cell sizes per condition and mean scores on each of the dependents are listed in Table 1. The ANOVAs showed signicant main effects of branding strategy (F(1, 738/739), P 0.001)1 for all three of the response variables. Supporting H1, we consistently found that the line extensions were more favourably evaluated than the new brands. The adbrand interaction was also signicant for Apr (F(2, 739) = 3.361, P = 0.035), Pi (F(2, 739) = 5.73, P = 0.003) and Ab (F(2, 738) = 4.343, P = 0.013, Figure 1). Planned contrasts results support Hypothesis 2. The informational and positive emotional appeal

Ad-evoked feelings After seeing the ad, respondents were rst asked to indicate the degree to which they had experienced a list of feelings when seeing the ad. Results indicated that for both products, the positive emotional ad was indeed most successful in evoking positive feelings (Mpersonal computer laptop = 4.49, Mcandy bar = 4.98), signicantly more so than, respectively, the informational (MPC = 3.40, MCB = 3.20) and the negative emotional ad (MPC = 1.97, MCB = 2.20) (P < 0.001).

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Figure 1:

Adbrand interaction effect for Ab (Analysis 1).

scored signicantly better than the negative emotional ad on all three response variables, but only for the new brands (P < 0.001). For the established brands, the ads did not differ signicantly in Pi (Minformational = 4.37, Mnegative emotional = 4.12, Mpositive emotional = 4.03; P = 0.631) or Ab (Minfo = 4.87, Mpos emo = 4.82, Mneg emo = 4.69; P = 0.190). For Apr, the contrast between the negative emotional ad (M = 4.33), on the one hand, and the positive emotional (M = 4.64) and informational ad (M = 4.82), on the other, was signicant (P = 0.005) for the line extensions as well. Importantly, however, as expected in Hypothesis 2, the differences in Apr between the ads were smaller for the line extensions than for the new brands (Minfo = 4.19, Mpos emo = 4.21, Mneg emo = 3.33; P < 0.001). The three-way interaction was marginally signicant for Ab (F(2, 738) = 2.475, P = 0.085) (Figure 2). Planned contrasts for the new computer brand (high involvement) show that, in line with Hypothesis 3a, the informational ad (M = 4.44) scored signicantly better than both emotional appeals (Mpos emo = 4.25, Mneg emo = 3.40; P < 0.001). Providing further support for Hypothesis 3a, this difference was not signicant for the line extension (P = 0.396). For candy bars (low involvement), the

positive emotional ad (M = 4.13) scored marginally signicantly better than the negative emotional (M = 3.51) and informational appeal (M = 3.90) (P = 0.052), but only for the new brand. For the line extension, the difference was again not signicant (P = 0.259). This conrms Hypothesis 3b. The three-way interaction effect failed to reach conventional levels of signicance for Apr (F(2, 739) = 1.963, P = 0.141) and was highly insignicant for Pi (F(2, 739) = 0.817, P = 0.442), but planned contrasts revealed a similarly signicant pattern for both these variables as for Ab. In line with H3a, the contrasts for Apr (P < 0.001) and Pi (P = 0.032) were signicant for the new brand PC advertisements, but not for the line extension PC ads (p(Apr) = 0.104, p(Pi) = 0.338). In line with Hypothesis 3b, the positive emotional appeal scored signicantly best for the candy bars, when the brand was new (p(Apr) = 0.002, p(Pi) = 0.026), but not when the product was a line extension (p(Apr) = 0.830, p(Pi) = 0.155). Hypotheses 3a and 3b were supported for both Apr, Pi and Ab.

Discussion
The two products used in the rst analysis were subject to a possible confound between product category involvement and purchasing motivation. We have established that the two product categories differ signicantly in product category involvement, and we have attributed differences between the products to the difference in processing motivation owing to involvement. However, both products also differ in purchasing motivation: whereas candy bars are generally a highly hedonic product, and most people will consider laptop computers to be a more utilitarian product. In addition, although the ads for the different products in our rst two analyses conveyed the same feelings and used comparable pictures, there is a possible

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Figure 2:

Three-way interaction effect for Ab (Analysis 1).

confound in that the ads for the two products used different stimuli. To test for the effect of product category involvement without the above-mentioned obstacles, we further considered the data for computer laptops (n = 377). We median split product category involvement scores (median = 5.83) and used this as the third factor in two 3 (advertising strategy) 2 (branding strategy) 2 (product category involvement) factorial designs. As with the rst analysis, dependent variables were attitude toward the advertised product (Apr), purchase intention (Pi) and attitude toward the brand (Ab) (with the quality premeasure as a covariate) (Table 2).

Analysis 2: Results
An independent samples t-test between the two groups of respondents showed that the low product category involvement group

(M = 5.13) indeed scored signicantly lower on product category involvement than the respondents allocated to the highinvolvement group (M = 6.46) (t(312) = 25.854, P < 0.001). The ANOVAs on Apr (F(2, 365) = 23.519, P < 0.001), Pi (F(2, 365) = 26.116, P < 0.001) and Ab (F(2, 364) = 5.638, P = 0.018) all reveal signicant main effects of branding strategy. On all three measures, the line extensions scored signicantly better than the new brands, supporting Hypothesis 1. The ad brand interaction found in Analysis 1 was also replicated here for Apr (F(2, 365) = 3.548, P = 0.030), Pi (F(2, 365) = 3.931, P = 0.020) and Ab (F(2, 364) = 7.107, P = 0.001), again conrming Hypothesis 2. The informational and positive emotional appeals scored positively compared to a negative emotional appeal for new brands, but the effects of the different advertising strategies were smaller or non-existent for line extensions. The three-way interaction was marginally signicant for Pi (F(2, 365) = 2.796, P = 0.062). In the high-involvement group, although the contrast pattern was consistent with the rst part of Hypothesis 3a (informational appeal better than positive or negative emotional), the contrast was insignicant for new brands (P = 0.189) and extensions (P = 0.175). Hypothesis 3a is not conrmed for Pi. In terms of Apr and Ab, however, Hypothesis 3a was conrmed by planned contrasts. For the new brand, the informational appeal scored signicantly better than the emotional ads in the highinvolvement group (P < 0.012). For the line extensions, this difference was insignicant (P > 0.409). With respect to Hypothesis 3b, the positive emotional appeal scored best for the low-involvement group, but only on PI. In terms of Apr and Ab, the informational scored slightly better for the new brand. In either case, although the contrasts were indeed greater for new brand (C > 0.241)

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Table 2: Analysis 2 mean scores per treatment Product brand appeal New brand n Apr Pi Apb Info (34) 4.69 3.75 5.09 Pos (33) 4.42 3.93 4.77 Neg (27) 3.68 2.84 4.14 Low involvement Line extension Info (30) 4.33 3.63 4.58 Pos (37) 4.69 3.84 4.61 Neg (32) 4.40 4.21 4.80 Info (28) 4.62 3.65 4.74 High involvement New brand Pos (28) 4.13 3.37 4.48 Neg (36) 3.12 2.60 3.69 Line extension Info (33) 5.42 4.74 5.22 Pos (30) 4.80 4.20 4.93 Neg (29) 4.46 3.69 4.79

than for the line extension (C < 0.142), they were not signicant for either of the brands. Hence, in Study 2, we do not nd support for Hypothesis 3b.

DISCUSSION
The results of Analysis 2, based on a median split of product category involvement within the same product category, were comparable to the rst analysis. In Analysis 1, an informational appeal worked best for the high product category involvement condition, laptop computers, whereas a positive emotional appeal was best evaluated in case of lower product category involvement (candy bars). When considering these products as representing the low-involvement transformational (candy bars) and the high-involvement informational (laptop computers) quadrants of the Rossiter-Percy Grid (Rossiter and Percy, 1997; Bergkvist and Rossiter, 2008), our ndings correspond to the creative strategies recommended by Rossiter and Percy (1997) of emotional authenticity for the lowinvolvement transformational case and information for the high-involvement informational case. However, this result was qualied by the presence of a signicant three-way interaction. For new brands, we nd support for the Rossiter-Percy recommendations, whereas the effects are smaller or even non-existent for line extensions. This interaction suggests that the recommendations from the Rossiter-Percy

Grid may hold for new brands, but not necessarily for established brands. For a new brand, advertising is very likely to causally affect product and brand evaluations, because there are no prior brand variables that could be alternative causes (Bergkvist and Rossiter, 2008). For well-known, high-quality brands, the negative evaluations of negative emotional appeals are not reected in product and brand evaluations. Line extensions of established brands could benet from previous brand associations cancelling out the effect of the ad (Stammerjohan et al, 2005). Analysis 2 was carried out to replicate the results for Analysis 1 while more directly studying product category involvement effects. For highly involved individuals, an informational appeal scored best, but for low-involvement individuals, a positive emotional ad did not score signicantly better than an informational ad. This signals that the type of product may also play a part in determining the type of appeal that is most effective, above and beyond product category involvement. Some researchers plead for a contingency approach: Informational advertising would be more effective for utilitarian products (laptop computers), affective advertising for hedonic products (candy bars) (Johar and Sirgy, 1991; Adaval, 2001). It should be noted, of course, that even individuals in the low product category involvement group were still rather involved with laptop computers (mean =

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over 5 out of 7), and thus (additional) product category involvement effects cannot be excluded completely. In addition, the products may have also differed on other dimensions: laptop computers are typically search goods, whereas candy bars will normally by classied as experience goods. The effects that could be expected based on this dimensions are in the same direction of our hypothesis based on product category involvement. As in Analysis 1, the difference between the specic ad strategies was much smaller for the line extension brands than for new brands. Further research should try to disentangle the effect of the level of product category involvement from product type in terms of the effectiveness of advertising and branding strategies.

MANAGERIAL IMPLICATIONS
The results of this research lead to a number of managerial implications. It is apparent that brand extensions are more positively evaluated than new brands. As such, launching new products as extensions of established brands seems a viable strategy over new brands. Brand managers seem to have understood this, as the vast majority of new product introductions today are indeed some form of extension. Moreover, in case of line extensions, the advertising strategy used does not seem to have a signicant effect on brand responses. It should be noted that the line extension brands included in this study were highly familiar of favourable perceived quality and t closely with the new product. However, this is a realistic situation for many line extensions. The choice of an advertising strategy is especially important for the introduction of new products by means of new brands. On the basis of this research, there seems no compelling reason to use negative emotional appeals for consumer products in terms of building positive attitudes. Negative emotional appeals, of course, are frequently used to attract attention to the ad and break

through the clutter (Pope et al, 2004; Shehryar and Hunt, 2005). It is possible that attention (and possibly brand recall and recognition) may benet from negative emotional appeals, but if this is coupled with negative attitudinal reactions, they should be avoided in the context of consumer products. Especially for new brands, negative emotional appeals damaged the product and general brand perceptions. Informational appeals, on the other hand, may meet consumers desire for knowledge when new products are introduced. Especially in high product category involvement situations, informational appeals benet product and brand evaluations. For hedonic low-involvement products, such as candy bars, positive emotional appeals also perform well. As suggested by Janssens and De Pelsmacker (2005), advertisers may try to accumulate both these positive effects by creating advertisements that generate both positive feelings, as well as provide adequate information about the advertised product. This strategy may benet both the extension evaluation and parent brand attitude.

LIMITATIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH


Overall, advertising effects seem especially relevant for new brands. For (extensions of) established brands, the specic type of appeal has less of a repercussion on product and brand evaluations, although further research into advertising for extensions is necessary. Nan (2006), for example, shows that consumer attitudes towards extension ads signicantly contribute to Ab. Whether and how the inuence of advertising strategy on Ab might differ for different appeal types or depending on the level of product category involvement, is an interesting issue for further research. The results of this study could be replicated for different products and brands and varying ad strategies. Many studies note that brand quality and t positively inuence

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consumers attitude towards extensions (Aaker and Keller, 1990; Dens and De Pelsmacker, 2010). In addition, brand strength, ownership and symbolism also determine extension success (Reddy et al, 1994; Kirmani et al, 1999). Whether extensions are still preferred over new brands if the parent brand is non-symbolic, less familiar, perceived to be of inferior quality and/or less tting with the new extension, is an interesting line of further study. Future research should also determine what the inuence of advertising strategy would be for established brands under these circumstances. Research in this context may include effects on brand and USP recall or recognition as well. We were also not able to entirely disprove a potential confounding effect of buying motivation in this research. Further research should try to disentangle the effect of pure level of product category involvement from type of buying motivation. Future research could explore whether situations exist in which negative emotional appeals might be perceived more favourably, for example in the context of public sensitization campaigns rather than purely commercial messages (Dahl et al, 2003). In addition, it should be noted that we used only ctitious new products, with which respondents had no direct experience. In this case, the only information consumers had on the extension itself was represented in the ad. We deliberately chose ctitious products so as to replicate the situation for a new product launch and not to confound the data with previous ads for an existing brand, or personal experience with the advertised product. Personal experience with a new brand may reduce the major inuence of advertising on Apr and Ab (Smith, 1993). Keller and Sood (2003) also state that a strong experience with a new product is required for a consumer to update his or her feelings and opinions about the parent brand. This may

be why Ab seemed relatively robust for the extension brands. As we used ctitious extensions and new brands, we also had no real-life behavioural data available on extension success and choice, and all results are based on self-reports capturing the immediate attitudinal response. Future research should examine how attitudes may evolve over time. Consumers also saw the ad only once; in real life, extension launches will normally be accompanied by intensive advertising campaigns, in which consumers will be confronted with the ads more often. It would be interesting to test how evaluations evolve after a number of exposures to the different ads.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The authors gratefully acknowledge nancial support from the Research Foundation Flanders (F.W.O. Vlaanderen). The authors also thank Insites and Think.BBDO for their assistance in the data collection, and Wim Janssens for his help with the statistical analysis.

NOTE
1 Differences in degree of freedom are because of the covariate included for Ab.

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APPENDIX
STIMULUS EXAMPLES

(a) Candy bar, new brand, informational appeal

(b) Candy bar, established brand, positive emotional appeal

(c) Candy bar, established brand, negative emotional appeal

(d) Laptop PC, established brand, informational appeal

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(e) Laptop PC, new brand, positive emotional appeal

(f ) Laptop PC, new brand, negative emotional appeal

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