Shawntel M. Nieto, Anna A. Mendiola, PhD
ADVANCING THE THEORY OF PLANNED BEHAVIOR TO DETERMINE INFLUENCE OF MESSAGE FRAMES ON INTENTION TO REDUCE USAGE OF PRODUCTS IN SACHET PACKAGING
The single-use plastic “sachet economy” in the Philippines has contributed significantly to the country being ranked as the third worst polluter of the world’s oceans in 2018. As 90% of consumers still remain regular users of products in sachets, it is imperative that increased efforts be made to reduce consumption of single use plastics and move them towards behavior that is more pro-environment. Research on the Theory of Planned Behavior has suggested its particular applicability in terms of understanding the influences on pro-environmental behavior. Furthermore, literature has also established that framing theory and persuasive messaging can result in an increase in pro-environmental behaviors. Currently, research connecting the Theory of Planned Behavior, the framing theory, and pro-environmental behavior is limited, especially as regards consumer use of products with environmentally harmful packaging. Through integrating the Theory of Planned Behavior and the framing theory, the study determined the influence of various message frames on the youth’s intention to reduce their use of products in single-use sachet packaging. An experiment was conducted on 350 randomly selected university students with various gain and loss framed messages. The results established the applicability of the Theory of Planned Behavior in determining the relationship between the students’ attitudes, subjective norms, perceived behavioral control, and intention to reduce their use of products in sachet packaging. Moreover, the study established the differential effect of messages framed around personal health, expressed either as a gain or a loss, as well as messages framed around personal financial gains, in influencing the youth’s intention to reduce their use of products in sachet packaging. Implications for pro-environmental marketing and communication efforts are also discussed.