Pseudo-credibility and persuasion
Sagarin, Brad J., 1966-
Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy)
Department of Psychology
An increasingly common marketing practice involves the use of pseudocredible sources. This technique consists of implying that a source is credible without overtly identifying the source (e.g., “a doctor at a leading medical school recommends drug X”). Study la and Study lb examined the persuasiveness of pseudo-credible sources when messages are pro- and counter-attitudinal and somewhat ambiguous with regard to believability. Contrary to expectations, Study la results showed no persuasive effect of any of the sources. In Study lb, results showed that the high credibility source was persuasive in the print conditions. In addition, the pseudo-credible source was rated as similar in credibility to the low credibility source. Study 2 examined the effect of endorsement by a pseudocredible source for a known product and sought to determine what inferences (if any) people make about the actual sources underlying pseudo-credible sources. Again, no persuasive effects of the sources were found. Participants showed poor memory for all sources.
Wood, Sarah E., "Pseudo-credibility and persuasion" (2006). Graduate Research Theses & Dissertations. 4580.
vi, 95 pages
Northern Illinois University
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