The Petty and Cacioppo development probability model

Persuasion is the ability of some people to convey ideas, and for these to be ultimately shared, accepted and disseminated by the recipient of the message.

Thus, persuasion involves the ability to convince others, and is a tool that is used especially in the field of advertising, sales and marketing.

The elaboration probability model was created by Petty and Cacioppo (1983, 1986) and addresses the issue of persuasion, within social psychology and organizations. Try to explain how people are persuaded and in what way. Let’s see what it is.

    Development probability model: characteristics

    The elaboration probability model was an important step in persuasion studies because it incorporated previous attitude models. His goal was to create a model which brought together the contributions of previous persuasive theories.

    The theories which agglutinate the elaboration probability model are: Yale’s communication theory based on sequence: source, message, channel and receiver, McGuire’s theory (1968), the contributions of implication (Krugman , 1966), social judgment theory (Sherif et al., 1981), the heuristic model (Chaiken, 1980) and, to a lesser extent, value expectation models (Ajzen, 1975).

    It was in the 1980s (in the decade of its creation) that the elaboration probability model was empirically demonstrated. It has been done the study of advertisements, used as experimental stimuli.

    Although 30 years have passed since the appearance of the model, it is still applied today by various research, such as the study of persuasion on the Internet.

      Components: aspects of persuasion

      The Petty and Cacioppo probability model has four ideas or central components.

      1. Continuum

      People’s attitudes or other judgments can be changed to varying degrees, Through a continuum of development, ranging from “low” to “high”. In other words, your beliefs can be changed slightly or intensely, including midpoints.

      2. Specific change processes

      Along this continuum several specific change processes may occur.

      For example, there is a classic conditioning or a simple exposure (effect of a simple exposure), when the required thought is weak or ill-conceived. These processes will be located at the lower end of the continuum.

      In contrast, patterns of cognitive response and expectation of value occur when a high degree of reflection is required (More complex thought, which requires more cognitive effort). These will be located at the upper end of the continuum.

      2.1. routes

      At the level of the brain, There are and are used two types of routes: ring road and central.

      2.1.1. ring road

      A peripheral path is followed when the processes involved are at a low level of the continuum. This route focuses on peripheral aspects of the messageThat is, less important aspects, details, etc.

      Following a peripheral route involves little involvement on the part of the recipient, less mental effort and short-term changes in their attitudes.

      2.1.2. central road

      In contrast, a central path is followed when the processes involved are at a high level of the continuum.

      This route involves greater involvement and mental effort by the recipient, who focuses on more central and elaborate aspects of the message, as well as on lasting changes in their attitudes (long term).

      2.1.3. Complementary routes

      Ultimately persuading the receiver is determined by a mixture of the two processes; in other words that is to say, there is no separation or dichotomyBut the two processes complement each other depending on the characteristics of the message and other variables.

      3. Consequences of the trial

      The result of treatment levels (high or low), determine the consequences of the recipient’s judgment. In other words, if the judgment is based on a reflection on the merits (the merits of what the sender wants to persuade us of), there is a better chance that such a judgment will persist over time, better resist attempts to change. and generates consequences. for other judgments and behaviors.

      The model of the probability of elaboration, depending on the variables that can affect the attitude of the receiver, organizes several specific processes.

      For example, the attraction of the source or the emotion felt will influence the amount of thought who has a person, placing him or her at a point on the upper or lower continuum.

      However, if circumstances have previously put the person down, the variables can serve as simple keys, affecting attitudes in a direction consistent with their valence.

      Conversely, if the person is at the high end of the continuum, the variable can influence judgments in three other ways:

      • By argument or proof; for example, the attraction or emotion felt
      • Affecting the valence of thoughts that come to mind, for example, more positive thoughts,
      • Affecting structural factors thoughts generated; for example, having more confidence in your own thoughts.

      Model variables

      they exist several variables in the elaboration probability model, Which determine how the message will be processed and whether persuasion will eventually occur:

      • Motivation for treatment / Need for information.
      • Processing capacity.
      • Elaboration of the depth of thought.
      • Positivity of the cognitive response.

      Bibliographical references:

      • Petty, R. and Cacioppo, J. (1983). Central and peripheral pathways of persuasion. application to advertising. In: Percy, L. and Woodside, A. (eds). Advertising and consumer psychology. Lexington Books, Missa.
      • Stiff, J. (1985). Cognitive processing of persuasive messages. A meta-analytical review of the effects of supporting information on attitudes. Michigan: Michigan State University.
      • Hogg, M. (2010). Social psychology. VAUGHAN GRAHAM M. Panamericana, Editorial: Panamericana
      • Léon, JJ (2014). Validity and extensions of the elaboration probability model (ELM). For a convincing theory of the field in advertising. adComunica. Journal of Strategies, Trends and Innovation in Communication, 8.

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