Introduction Advertising is a big industry that relies mainly on getting its message across. It can be in several forms of media such as print, television, audio messages or even the Internet. It is a combination of art and science, drawing its practices from several scientific disciplines such as psychology, sociology and biology. The underlying message is one of gentle persuasion to somehow influence the target audience, whether to try or buy a product, avail of a service and also to convince someone to accept an idea or proposition. This latter part is used mainly in an advocacy group (global warming, environmentalism, animal rights, etc. ) and in political party campaigns (to support a candidate's idea, message, vision or political platform).
In short, advertising is the art of influencing people by making use of ethos, pathos and logos. An advertisement can contain all three or just two or only one of the elements cited. It relies on subliminal messages of which we are even unaware of. Advertisements often make a pitch of giving out important information but mostly its purpose is the power of suggestion by making certain associations or allusions to what it is trying to convey to the consumer.
If the particular advertisement is well crafted, the people can easily make the connection between what it is trying to get across and the intended action or reaction by the consumer or reader. My example of a print advertisement is that by the maker of cosmetic beauty products Clinique. Their ad was for a certain type of lipstick that is supposedly guaranteed to produce a brilliant smile on whose lips it was used on.
This ad smartly rode on people's obsession with having white teeth but the ad cleverly deflects it towards producing a winning smile instead. Discussion The tag line of Clinique immediately catches your attention by using logos which is an appeal to logic. By stating clearly it cannot whiten your teeth, the reader is subconsciously agreeing with that statement and by implication with the rest of the ad's message. The tone is inviting, asking a reader to try out its complete line at the nearest counter and see clearly the difference it can make.
To emphasize the connection, the ad used a toothbrush in proximity with a sample lipstick. The ad also appeals to people's insecurities and worries about having white teeth and brightest smile there can be. In other words, the ad taps into people's vanity. The beauty industry has always thrived on this aspect, by its promises of eternal youth and making women more beautiful. Its overall message is one of hope, that beauty will never fade despite the passage of years.
The copy itself cleverly challenges readers to try it out and see for themselves. The juxtaposition of lipstick and toothbrush emphasizes the connection of white teeth and a bright smile. The two images tend to linger on in our minds. Conclusion The print ad targets women of all ages (preferably working women professionals) who can afford its steep price. An assumption made here is all women try their best to make that winning smile whether at work or elsewhere and only Clinique can offer that rare mystique. The mood is understated and neutral, ideal for busy women who are always pressed for time.
Both the text and image emphasized the practical which implies that is how successful women got to their present positions in life and in their careers, stating it is perfume and allergy free. Advertising today has now taken a new turn, this time leaning towards science with a new compelling book that says it takes only about two seconds for people to decide on an ad. These two seconds are very powerful and whether experts call it intuition or pathos (feelings and emotions) or rapid cognition (logos), an ad should do it in two seconds (Gladwell, 2005).
Reference List Gladwell, Malcolm. (2005). Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking. Boston, MA, USA: Little, Brown & Company.