Davison's original third-person-effect proposal notes that experts, because of their special knowledge, may exhibit a greater third-person effect than do nonexperts. To gather empirical evidence on this notion, this research investigates whether experts perceive a greater influence of direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising on others than do novices. The expert-novice distinction is made in two different ways: (a) physicians versus consumers, based on objective knowledge of prescription drugs and (b) consumer experts versus consumer novices, based on familiarity with DTC advertising. Results show that consumer experts clearly exhibit greater perceived DTC advertising influence on others than do novices, and the differences between experts and novices vary by presumed DTC advertising influence dimensions. Future research is advocated on expert views in presumed media influence studies.
- DTC prescription drug advertising
- Presumed influence
- Third-person effect