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EMAC 2023 Annual

#WowItsMe – Revisiting Meaning Transfer Model with Own-Face Digital Advertising

Published: May 24, 2023


Janina Krick, EBS University for Business and Law; Franziska Krause, EBS University of Business and Law; Sven Henkel, EBS Universität für Recht und Wirtschaft; Dipayan Biswas, University of South Florida


Recent technological advancements led to disruptive changes in digital advertising. One change has been the introduction of technologies that can capture observable preferences, trackable data, and posted pictures to facilitate the design of each user's digital persona to target consumers with precise personalized ads. As a result, consumer expectations for endorsers have been changing in the recent past. While in the past, endorsers often have been unapproachable celebrities, more recent endorsers featured in ads are related as being approachable. The highest form of approachability related to the self. Therefore, based on the classic meaning transfer model (McCracken, 1989), we introduce a new type of endorsement: own-face-advertising (OFA). In three experiments, we investigate the effectiveness of seeing yourself in an ad. Two critical contributions are the introduction of the OFA concept and how source credibility and attractiveness take on interesting twists when it comes to OFA.