“I Say That World May Go To Pot For Me So Long As I Always Get My Tea”: About
the Self-Schemas Activation in Social Influence Techniques.

Karolina Dobrosz-Michiewicz 1 *

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Concern for the positive self-image is one of the most important human adaptive traits and affects many of our social behaviors, e.g. related with self-promotion or self-defense (Oleś, 2003, 243). Self-system discrepancy causes negative emotions. To avoid them e.g. in motivational approach/avoidance conflicts, people prefer to choose information congruent with their self-schemas, irrespective of messages rightness or truth (Kofta, Dolinski 2000). Furthermore, the regulatory fit state (between individuals motivational orientation to a goal and the manner in which they pursue the goal)  as provided  increases the effectiveness of persuasive appeals (Higgins, 2000, 2005, 2007). Study present the results of natural experiment made in July 2013 to verify (1) if it is possible to influence people referring to their self-schemas activation and (2) how to use the self-schemas activation to increase persuasion. In 2 x 2 between subject factorial design, the subjects were influenced in one of four experimental conditions (self-schema activation vs. no activation message-goal congruence: congruent vs incongruent; Higgins 2012a). The results indicate two conclusions: (1) self-schema activation and goal-message congruency increase the level of social influence but the effect of congruency was stronger than self-schema; (2) self-schema activation increases the effect of goal-message congruency.


social influence techniques motivational approach/avoidance conflicts self-schemas activation regulatory fit


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Article Type: Research Article

Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, Volume 4, Issue October 2014 - Special Issue, pp. 1-11

Published Online: 01 Oct 2014

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