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EMAC 2020 Annual Conference

The normative social influence exerted by a group on the individual assessment of taboo sexual advertising stimuli: comparison of compliance between men and women

Published: May 27, 2020


Ludivine Destoumieux, TSM Research; Éric Vernette, TSM Research


Conformity; Advertising; Taboos


This work focuses on the compliance pressure exerted by a group when evaluating an advertising stimulus that is perceived as taboo. What is the persuasive effect of the normative influence exerted by group members on the emotional and conative individual assessment of advertising using arbitrarily a taboo based on sexuality? We assess the impact of this influence on the attitude towards advertising, the attitude towards the brand and the purchase intention. The results show that the experimental subjects are approaching the norm imposed by the group, especially when the group is favorable. Experimental individuals maintain their initial opinion about the perception of the taboo but conform to their emotional evaluations and purchasing intentions, women, who perceive the taboo more, let themselves be more influenced than men and become less hostile to taboo when they find themselves in a social context, whether other individuals are in favor of it or not.