Scandinavian Working Papers in Business Administration

SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Business Administration,
Stockholm School of Economics

No 2003:7: The Smiling Face in Marketing Appeals and its Effects on the Customer

Magnus Söderlund () and Sara Rosengren ()
Additional contact information
Magnus Söderlund: Dept. of Business Administration, Stockholm School of Economics, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, SE-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden
Sara Rosengren: Dept. of Business Administration, Stockholm School of Economics, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, SE-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: Joy appeals appear frequently in marketing, but they have received little attention from marketing researches compared to other emotional appeals (e.g., sexy appeals, humor appeals, and attraction appeals with decorative models). This study examines one particular aspect of the joy appeal in a marketing context, the smiling face stimulus. The main findings are that the smiling face is more effective than non-smiling faces in eliciting (1) a positive attitude toward the smiling stimulus person, (2) a positive overall attitude to the firm using the smile appeal, and (3) intentions to patronize and recommend this firm.

Keywords: marketing appeals; consumer behavior; emotions; joy

20 pages, First version: April 8, 2003. Revised: April 9, 2003.

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