Behaviour Change

PROPAGANDA FOR CHANGE is a project created by the students of Behaviour Change (ps359) and Professor Thomas Hills at the Psychology Department of the University of Warwick. This work was supported by funding from Warwick's Institute for Advanced Teaching and Learning.

Monday, January 21, 2013

A mobile network run by YOU!



GiffGaff is a mobile phone service based in the United Kingdom, it functions as a mobile virtual network operator using the O2 network. People either order their sim cards online for free or obtain sim cards from an existing member as a gift, the existing member will subsequently gain £5 as their credits.

The tactic reciprocity was employed in this advertisement. People feel obliged to give something in return after receiving something for free, even when the value of what they received and what they give in return do not match. By offering a free sim card, customers feel emotionally burdened to purchase a £10 pack ‘in return’. Regan (1971) demonstrated the concept of reciprocity in his experiment. In which, participants thought that they were in an ‘art appreciation’ experiment with a partner, who was actually Regan’s assistant; the assistant disappeared for two minutes and came back either with or without a soft drink. After the ‘art appreciation’, the assistant asked the participant to buy raffle tickets from him. The participants who received a drink were more likely to buy the tickets. The participants actually paid more for the tickets than the cost of the soft drink. 

Another tactic positive valence framing was also employed, whereby they frame customers into thinking that they are gaining rather than losing. GiffGaff mentioned that unlike their rivals, they do not lock people to a contract and they offer the cheapest deals. Additionally, customers will get £5 credits if they get a friend to use GiffGaff. This tactic is shown by an experiment (Meyerowitz & Chaiken, 1987) in which women who read pamphlets about breast self-examinations that emphasizes the negative consequences of not taking the exam were later more likely to undergo the exam than those receiving messages about the positive consequences of taking the exam.

Regan, D. T. (1971). Effects of a favor and liking on compliance. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 7(6), 627-639. 


Meyerowitz, B. E., & Chaiken, S. (1987). The effect of message framing on breast self-examination attitudes, intentions, and behavior. Journal of personality and social psychology, 52(3), 500.

1 comment:

  1. Well done. Nice application of the Regan and Meyerowitz and Chaiken.

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