Parenting YouTube Natives: The Impact of Pre-Roll Advertising and Text Disclosures On Parental Responses to Sponsored Child Influencer Videos

Journal of Advertising, Special Issue on Children and Advertising.

Abstract: The Children’s Advertising Review Unit’s (CARU) recent cases involving child influencer unboxing videos expressed concern that they did not appropriately disclose sponsorship. Placement of pre-roll advertising was also cited as contributing to the blurring between content and advertising. This study investigated parents’ understanding of and responses to sponsored child influencer unboxing videos. We conducted a 2×3 online experiment among 418 parents that examined the influence of sponsorship text disclosure (present or absent) and sponsor pre-roll (sponsor pre-roll, non-sponsor pre-roll and no pre-roll) on conceptual persuasion knowledge, perceptions of sponsorship transparency and several outcome measures. We also tested the potential moderating variable of parental mediation. We found that sponsor pre-roll advertising positively impacted parents’ perceptions of sponsorship transparency, which in turn mediated attitudinal and perceptual outcomes. Additionally, high levels of parental mediation conditionally impacted the indirect effect of a sponsor pre-roll advertisement via sponsorship transparency on perceptions of the unboxing video and attitudes toward the sponsor. Based on the findings we discuss theoretical, managerial, and public policy implications. ., Mariea Grubbs Hoy, and Courtney C. Childers (Forthcoming), “Parenting YouTube Natives: The Impact of Pre-Roll Advertising and Text Disclosures On Parental Responses to Sponsored Child Influencer Videos,” Journal of Advertising, Special Issue on Children and Advertising.

Nathaniel J. Evans 

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