About M.E. Sharpe
Sharpe Reference
Sharpe Online Ref.
Sharpe Focus
Author Guidelines
Subject Catalogs
Catalog Request
Library Rec. Form
North Castle Books

Humor in Advertising: A Comprehensive Analysis
Authored by: Charles S. Gulas; Marc G. Weinberger

Cloth ISBN: 978-0-7656-1613-5 Paper ISBN: Not Available
Cloth Price Paper Price
USD: $88.95 N/A
Discount Code:
Discount Code:
Available to all countries
Information: 256pp. Tables, figures, references, index.
Publication Date: March 2006.  


Description: Although the use of humor in advertising has its origins in the early days of the business, its widespread use as an advertising strategy is a more recent phenomenon. This is the first book-length, fully integrated discussion of this popular advertising technique.

Well written and filled with interesting examples, Humor in Advertising draws on extensive serious research on the use of humor from the fields of Advertising and Marketing, as well Psychology, Mass Media, and Communications Studies. The authors are careful to point out not only the benefits, but also the potential pitfalls in advertising's attempts at humor, as advertisers continue to use humorous message to break through the clutter of proliferating ads, and the line between advertising and entertainment is further blurred. No other book provides such a comprehensive and wide-angled analysis of this important topic. It is essential reading for scholars and researchers in the field, as well as for advertising agency account planners and creative directors.

Selected Contents:

Tables, Figures, and Exhibits
Preface and Acknowledgments

1. History of Humor in Advertising
Humor Pioneers
Growth of Humor in Advertising
History of Research on Humor in Advertising
Analysis of Research on Humor in Advertising

2. What Is Humor? And How Does It Work?
What Mechanism Explains How Humor Works?
What Makes Humor Work? Enabling Factors
Integrating Humor: A Challenge Framework

3. Audience Factors
Components of Humor
Demographic Factors
Culture, Subculture, and Ethnicity
Psychographic Factors
Other Individual-Level Factors
Paradox of Humor

4. Media and Humor
Using Humor in Different Media
Where is Humor Effective?

5. Product Type and Humor
An ELM Explanation of How Humor Works in Advertising
Using Humor with Different Products
When Humor is Used

6. Humor Type and Message
The Broad View of Humor
Types of Humor
Communication Goals and Humor

7. Context Issues
The Importance of Context in Advertising
Source Context
Media Context: Humor in Advertising and Advertising in Humor
Micro-Social Context
Macro-Social Context
Ad-Induced Context

8. Research Methodology Issues
Advertising Research
Doctoral Dissertation Research Methodology
Lab Studies Versus Field Studies
Audience Factors
Product Factors
Comparable Executions
Context Issues
Attempted Humor versus Perceived Humor
Wear Out Revisited

9. Entertaining Some--Offending Others
Entertaining Some
Offending Others

10. General Conclusions and Research Directions
How Humor Works
What Humor Can Do
What Humor Cannot Do
What We Do No Know: Directions for Future Research
Parting Words

Name Index
Subject Index
About the Authors

Comment(s): "A book on advertising should be fun, and this one is. Useful, too." -- Betsy Gelb, University of Houston

"Gulas and Weinberger leave no doubt that they take humor seriously. Their sustained scholarship identifies research opportunities and provides timely insights. For advertisers scrambling to find the right tools to engage an increasingly fragmented audience, the authors clarify what can and cannot be expected from humor." -- Chris T. Allen, University of Cincinnati

Review(s): "...an exhaustive volume on humor in advertising. ...From a research standpoint, the book is extremely valuable... Highly recommended. Graduate students, faculty, researchers, and practioners with a scholarly bent." -- Social & Behavioral Sciences

Book Subjects
Exam Request
Award Winners
Forthcoming Books
New Releases