Campaigning for Hearts and Minds: How Emotional Appeals in Political Ads Work
It is common knowledge that televised political ads are meant to appeal to voters' emotions, yet little is known about how or if these tactics actually work. Ted Brader's innovative book is the first scientific study to examine the effects that these emotional appeals in political advertising have on voter decision-making.
At the heart of this book are ingenious experiments, conducted by Brader during an election, with truly eye-opening results that upset conventional wisdom. They show, for example, that simply changing the music or imagery of ads while retaining the same text provokes completely different responses. He reveals that politically informed citizens are more easily manipulated by emotional appeals than less-involved citizens and that positive "enthusiasm ads" are in fact more polarizing than negative "fear ads." Black-and-white video images are ten times more likely to signal an appeal to fear or anger than one of enthusiasm or pride, and the emotional appeal triumphs over the logical appeal in nearly three-quarters of all political ads.
Brader backs up these surprising findings with an unprecedented survey of emotional appeals in contemporary political campaigns. Politicians do set out to campaign for the hearts and minds of voters, and, for better or for worse, it is primarily through hearts that minds are won. Campaigning for Hearts and Minds will be indispensable for anyone wishing to understand how American politics is influenced by advertising today.
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ads appealing affective intelligence analysis anger appeal to emotions appealing to enthusiasm appealing to fear behavior belief campaign ads campaign advertising candidates chapter citizens coders cognitive consultants content analysis conventional wisdom Damasio deﬁned deﬁnitely effects of emotional election campaigns elicit emotional appeals emotional cues emotional responses enthusiasm ads enthusiasm and fear enthusiasm appeals enthusiasm cues evidence experiments fear ads fear appeals fear cues feelings ﬁgure ﬁnd ﬁndings ﬁrst ﬂag focus George H. W. Bush hypotheses imagery images impact of emotional inﬂuence initial preferences issues Lloyd Grove Marcus motivation negative ads ofﬁce opponent ordered probit paign participation party peals percent political ads political advertising politicians positive posttest predictions pretest primary relevant Republican role of emotion Rudy Maxa scholars Scott Harshbarger signiﬁcance speciﬁc speciﬁc emotions sponsor Star Tribune subjects television theory tions viewers visual vote choice voters Washington Post
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