How promotional content changes ratings: The impact of appeals, humor, and presentation

Susan Tyler Eastman, Gregory D. Newton, Paul D. Bolls

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study assessed the impact of content - as opposed to structural - factors on television program ratings, seeking to locate clusters of components that would identify effective on-air promotion and allocate content a better-defined place within theoretic models of media priming. Stepwise multiple regression analyses of 1,547 on-air promos for 155 prime-time programs demonstrated that 5-9% of ratings variance was accounted for by content appeals, humor, and presentation in promos for comedy programs. The influence of content variables was greater for familiar than unfamiliar comedies, and humor and presentation in promos contributed to variance in ratings for mid-rated but not high- or low-rated comedies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)238-259
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Applied Communication Research
Volume31
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2003

Keywords

  • Comedy promotion
  • Content appeals
  • Humor
  • Priming
  • Program promotion
  • Ratings

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