Comparative advertising effectiveness in Latin America: Evidence from Chile
Purpose – The purpose of this study is to test the viability of comparative advertising in Chile.
Design/methodology/approach – Data were collected via controlled experimentation. The study employed a 3 (comparative advertising intensity: noncomparative, indirect comparative, and direct comparative)×2 (product category involvement: low, high)×2 (sponsor brand's relative market share: market leader, other brand) between-subjects factorial design.
Findings – The results suggest that direct and indirect comparative advertisements are not more effective than noncomparative advertisements in Chile. Additionally, data do not support the idea that the effect of comparative advertising intensity is moderated by the product category involvement and/or by the sponsor brand's relative market share. Since comparative advertising was not shown to be more effective than noncomparative advertising, the authors hypothesize that it is due to cultural biases and the novelty of comparative advertising in Latin America, as expressed through negative message believability.
Practical implications – While experimental research is not sufficient to establish the generalized non-superiority of comparative advertising in the region, the results support the idea that comparative advertising might not be more effective than noncomparative advertising for many marketing campaigns in Latin America.
Originality/value – Several recent studies have investigated international differences in advertising practices. Most of these address advertising in general, leaving the transferability of comparative advertising practices largely unexplored (White Nye et al.). Analyzing the case of Latin America is highly relevant due to the limited development that exists with respect to comparative advertising in the region.