Tailoring reciprocity and scarcity in targeted ads to the regulatory focus of consumers: Mediating role of persuasion knowledge
Keywords:Targeted Advertising, Persuasion Knowledge, Tailored Content, Reciprocity Vs Scarcity, Regulatory Focus.
To increase the effectiveness of targeted ads, advertisers create tailored ad content to individual differences using reciprocity and scarcity persuasive techniques. Since consumers differ from each other in their goal pursuit approach, which is their regulatory focus, therefore they may process targeted ads consisting of reciprocity and scarcity differently. Hence, drawing from the literature on regulatory focus and reciprocity versus scarcity, this study aims to examine the impact of reciprocity versus scarcity persuasive strategies in the context of targeted ads on consumers’ persuasion knowledge, ad attitude, and engagement intention towards the ad. An online experiment using 196 university students was conducted for data collection. Results of a study reveal that scarcity-based content of the targeted ads aligns with the promotion focus of the consumers and hence results in positively influencing ad attitude towards targeted ad and engagement intention with a targeted ad. Results of the study further found that reciprocity-based content of the targeted ad aligns with prevention focus hence resulting in positively influencing their ad attitude and engagement intention with targeted advertisement. Further, the result of the study posits that tailored content of the targeted ads to the regulatory focus of consumers prevents the activation of their persuasion knowledge, hence minimizing the negative evaluation of targeted advertisement. Keeping the results of an online experiment in view this study concludes that reciprocity and scarcity in the content of targeted ads when tailored to the regulatory focus of the consumers results in higher ad effectiveness. We discuss theoretical contributions and practical implications for advertisers and marketers that findings of the study indicate.