A content analysis of advertisements for psychotherapy workshops: Implications for disseminating empirically supported treatments

Joan M. Cook, Kenneth R. Weingardt, Jacqueline Jaszka, Michael Wiesner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study involved a content analysis of 261 unique advertisements for psychotherapy workshops that appeared in two bimonthly clinical magazines, Psychotherapy Networker and Counselor, during a 2-year period. Two independent judges coded each advertisement and documented the type and prevalence of advertising appeals used. From the seminal diffusion of innovations model, Rogers' (2003) five perceived characteristics of innovations found to influence adoption in diverse fields were not well represented in these workshops appeals, appearing less than 10% each. Few advertisements cited specific empirically supported treatments or presented any evidence of treatment effectiveness beyond expert testimonials. The most frequently noted appeals were to benefit the clinician (e.g., earning education credit or developing skills), characteristics that enhance credibility of the workshop (e.g., reference to storied history or mention of faculty), and features of the advertisements itself (e.g., use of superlatives and exclamation points). Promotional strategies to advertise psychotherapy workshops can be used to inform the dissemination of empirically supported treatments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)296-307
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychology
Volume64
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2008

Keywords

  • Advertising
  • Education
  • Evidence-based medicine
  • Marketing
  • Psychotherapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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