What is it about?

in line with the distinctiveness theory (McGuire et al., 1978), ethnic minority individuals are found to engage in self‐referencing the advertising portrayals of ethnic minority significantly more than ethnic majority model. However, contrary to our hypothesis, ethnic majority subjects, when exposed to a model of the same ethnicity, reported stronger self‐referencing than when exposed to a model of different ethnicity and when compared with ethnic minority subjects.

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Why is it important?

It is essential,first of all, to measure the understanding and perception of ethnicity of the society before implementing ethnicity-based marketing strategies. Currently, there exists a rising demand in the market to discover the most effective strategies to appeal to ethnic minorities. Turkey offers an appropriate context to study ethnicity effects in advertising, owing to its ethnic diversity. By changing the ethnicity of the models featured in promotional materials, marketers may improve their relationship with their target minority groups.


Despite the ethnic groups becoming increasingly aware of their ethnic backgrounds and ethnicities within an already diverse society (Costa and Bamossy 1995), most marketers and advertisers fail to reflect this awareness in their strategies. In the context of Turkey, because Kurds are now the largest minority ethnic group within the Turkish population (18% of the Turkish population according to the CIA Factbook, 2012), our research seems to have practical relevance for advertisers or even social marketers.

Dr Ezgi Merdin
Bogazici Universitesi

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Your ethnic model speaks to the culturally connected: Differential effects of model ethnicity in advertisements and the role of cultural self-construal, Journal of Consumer Behaviour, December 2015, Wiley, DOI: 10.1002/cb.1562.
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