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Sociocultural meanings in visually standardized print ads

Michael Callow (Morgan State University, Baltimore, Maryland)
Leon G. Schiffman (St John's University, Jamaica, New York, USA)

European Journal of Marketing

ISSN: 0309-0566

Article publication date: 1 September 2004



The purpose of this paper is to explore the effectiveness of using standardized visual images in global print advertising campaigns. In particular, it examines how visual images depicting social (in)activity are interpreted among students from the USA, Spain, and the Philippines. Hall's contextual typology and Brewer's social identity theory are used to conceptually explain variations in consumers’ implicature development. The results of the quasi‐experimental study suggest that high‐context audiences are more inclined than low‐context audiences to over‐read into the meaning of the visual, and that the types of weak implicatures created are positively related to the audience's perceived social identity.



Callow, M. and Schiffman, L.G. (2004), "Sociocultural meanings in visually standardized print ads", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 38 No. 9/10, pp. 1113-1128.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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