What you say is what you show, and what you show is what you say

Date of publication: June 15, 1986


This is ASI's 20th year of testing commercials in Japan and the first part of this paper is concerned with briefly reviewing the early findings of inter-cultural comparisons of advertising research data. In data discrimination or sensitivity, there were no problems but it became clear when comparing Japanese and Western normative data that implications of the measures were very different. In particular, the analyst had to go outside the testing system, in some cases, for diagnostics. The key differentiating element has been identified as that of a greater emphasis on non-verbal communication in Japanese advertising. As most Western research methods relied on verbal responses, the problem was that of data "insensitivity" in communication measures and in difficulties in diagnosing the reasons for the advertising's success or otherwise. The second part of this paper concerns recent studies in which the issue of measuring the effects of non-verbal elements is addressed. It demonstrates that it is possible to produce diagnostic data for advertising that relies on non-verbal communications.

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