Narrative and Persuasion in Fashion Advertising
Narrative transportation-to be carried away by a story-has been proposed as a distinct route to persuasion. But as originally conceived, narrative transportation is unlikely to occur in response to advertisements, where persuasive intent is obvious and consumer resistance is expected. We analyze fashion ads to show how narrative transportation can nonetheless be a possible response to ads, if specific aesthetic properties are present, most notably when grotesque imagery is used. We then situate narrative transportation as one of five modes of engaging fashion advertising, each of which serves as a distinct route to persuasion. Interviews showed that consumers variously engage ads to act, identify, feel, transport, or immerse. We explain how aesthetic properties of ads call forth different modes of engagement and explore how grotesque imagery can lead to either narrative transportation or immersion. As routes to persuasion, transportation and immersion work by intensifying brand experience rather than boosting brand evaluation. (c) 2010 by JOURNAL OF CONSUMER RESEARCH, Inc..
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