According to the social cognitive theory, people are able to acquire skills and learn both from their own and from other people's experience. Advertisers widely use different psychological approaches that allow addressing target customers in more effective way. Probably, the most part of advertising messages is based on psychological motives of people rather than on the natural qualities of specific products, and the value of products is based not only on the natural qualities but on psychological ones as well.
Personal experience of an individual is priceless. There are hardly few things that can be compared to it in terms of the power of its influence and endurance of effect. That is why the value of the product for consumers may depend mostly on such experience.
However, psychologists found out that a great influence on person's conduct and choice can be made by other people's experience. People tend to find models to follow and pay attention to the opinions of others.
Many advertisers underestimate the power of advertising and anti-advertising their consumers make. This is the reason why they often describe the qualities of the products in their advertisements inadequately and inaccurately. It may significantly harm and decrease the level of the repeated and even trial purchases because people always tend to be attentive to the opinion of others.
Another method of application of this psychological peculiarity used by advertisers is based on the involvement of a famous person or an expert. Also, they invite role models who look like regular consumers. One of the very important aspects of using role models in ads is their physical attractiveness. According to researches, both males and females believe that beautiful people are more interesting, kind and friendly. In addition to the physical attractiveness, the role models who share their experiences of using the products or services that are being advertised, must possess some psychological traits such as self-confidence, boldness, self-assurance or elegancy, delicacy and charm.
Psychologists proved that both for male and female consumers over 30 years old role models should be (or look) some 10 years younger. The power of the verbal conviction does not depend on the physical appearance, though, but on the status and competence of the convincing person. For example, a top model would hardly fit an advertisement of kitchen accessories. Women realize that a top model has rather a vague experience or time for cooking. For the ad of this kind the best role model would be a cooking show host.
Involving famous characters in advertising is especially effective in ads of products for ladies. Women are more likely to follow others' example.
If the role model is not a famous person but an expert in this field the ad text has to inform about that. Also, in the advertising of common products or home appliances advertisers invite role models who look like target consumers of those products.
Following someone's examples, people can learn from other people's experience and form their habits and conduct accordingly. So, using role modeling in advertising has become a really very effective and powerful tool.