Advertising Principles - Evidence-based principles

Finalist for AMA’s 2011 Best Book in Marketing

A complete description of the principles has
been published in Persuasive Advertising

German Edition available
This Page has been visited
times since Febuary 1998.

Advertising Principles

Aims: This evidence-based site summarizes empirical research on how to develop persuasive communications and how to test their persuasiveness. It provides specific advice on what to do in what situations. It explains why the principles work and provides evidence on their effectiveness. For more on the aims, see "Welcome."


A free version of the paper is now available
21 Jun 2016 - Jessie

A free version of the paper Predictive Validity of Evidence-Based Persuasion Principles: An Application of the Index Method is now available for downloading. The study offers an empirical tool to predict the effectiveness of advertisements. If you would like to practice and get feedback from experts. Please use the training module here.

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Predicting the effectiveness of alternative advertisements
12 Mar 2016 - Jessie

A paper by Armstrong, Du, Green, and Graefe tested a new method—the Persuasion Principles Index (PPI)—for predicting the relative effectiveness of advertisements. The PPI is a rating of conformity to evidence-based persuasion principles. The software is freely available on, along with a self-training course that takes about an hour. The software can be used by novices or experts. The rating for a print ad can be completed in less than 30 minutes per rater.

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Daily Commercial

Principle - 8.8.2. Consider humor for high-involvement products only if relevant to a simple argument. - Violates
Flight instructor - 0:48

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Each commercial was selected to illustrate a single principle. Some show commercials that comply with a principle; others show ones that violate a principle. They are in numerical order; so if you would like to find an earlier one, refer to the complete list of commercials.



An appeal from J. Scott Armstrong

If you find this site useful in your role as a practitioner, educator, or researcher, please consider purchasing Persuasive Advertising. To date, all of the royalties have gone towards improvements of this not-for-profit site. (See funding)

Principle of the day:

Today's Exercise


The Advertising Principles site summarizes all useful knowledge about advertising so that it can be used by researchers, practitioners, and educators. Ideas for improving the site, please send to the Site Manager Rui Du (Jessie):


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