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."


“Persuasive Reports Checklist” available on
04 Feb 2016 - j scott armstrong

            Two evidence-based checklists for preparing persuasive reports have been posted on They can be used by managers, educators, students, researchers, editors, preachers, or politicians. The evidence-based checklists provide 42 guidelines for written reports, and 47 for oral reports. Some of which might be surprising to you. The checklists can be applied in less than an hour, and much less time after your first use.

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Revised “Self-certification Report" posted
16 Jan 2016 - j scott armstrong

I recently reviewed some self-certification reports by Wharton students. Most failed with respect to persuasion. The claims were unbelievable because there was no support for them. This update provides reminders on how and where support is needed. In addition, do not exaggerate or you will lose all credibility. Simply provide the facts and let them speak for you. In addition, it would help if you would use an oath or a set of standards that you followed in preparing the self-certification—and inform the reader that you have done so.

Scott Armstrong

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Daily Commercial

Principle - 2.5.1 Associate product with things that are favorable and relevant to the product. - Complies
Guinness on St. Patrick's Day - 2:35

For full-screen, click the black box next to the volume control

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:

6.9.2 Attack ads should employ objective information, not emotion

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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