Research addresses major social problem, texting while driving

Research from Dr. Ilgım Dara Benoit, an assistant professor of marketing in Appalachian State University's Department of Marketing & Supply Chain Management, considers how a major social problem -- texting and driving -- might be improved by tweaking public messaging.

Dr. Benoit's paper, Improving the effectiveness of anti-texting and driving PSAs: the effect of ad elements on attitude change, found that public service announcements (PSAs) that use emotional appeals, and evoke emotion through imagery (as opposed to text alone) and/or using fear (versus disgust, anger or guilt) result in the largest changes in attitude. Additionally, Dr. Benoit deduced that the more creative the PSA, the more effective it is at changing attitudes. Her research suggests that changes to current anti-texting and driving campaigns are needed. 

Dr. Benoit co-authored the paper, which appears in the Journal of Social Marketing, with Elizabeth G. Miller (Department of Marketing, University of Massachusetts Amherst), Elika Kordrostami (Department of Marketing and Business Information Systems, Rowan University) and Ceren Ekebas-Turedi (Department of Marketing, Purdue University Northwest).

Read the full paper.

About Faculty Research in the Walker College of Business

Walker College of Business faculty produce and disseminate extensive research through both academic and professional communities. In the last five years, faculty members have published approximately 400 peer-reviewed academic journal articles, 130 conference proceedings and made more than 400 conference and professional presentations in 170 different venues. In total, the faculty has produced more than 700 individual intellectual contributions in basic discovery research, more than 400 contributions in applied or integrative research and 240 contributions in teaching and learning research. For more information, visit

Dr. Ilgım Dara Benoit
Published: Mar 30, 2021 4:41pm