Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 1998


Interest in the role of video supers-superimposed video presentations of verbal information-has grouwn among consumers, advertisers, the television networks, and public policymakers, as supers have become prevalent in television commercials. The authors empirically address the communications efficacy of video supers in a sample of 200 different commercials that contain video supers Drawing on a theory of modality effects, the authors examine the comprehensive of video supers relative to commercial content. The authors develop hypotheses and analyze structural determinants of video super comprehension, such as presence of a voice-over, rate of presentation, and presentation size. The findings are supportive of the predictions and suggest that viewer opportunity to process information in a video super might be a critical element in any strategy to increase viewer comprehension rates.


This article was originally published in Journal of Public Policy & Marketing in 1998.

Peer Reviewed



American Marketing Association



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