December 11, 2012
Advertisements come in various shapes, sizes, and mediums, and as humans, we are constantly surrounded by them. Whether they are on TV, radio, or in a magazine, there is no way that we can escape them. They all have their target audience for whom the advertisers have specifically designed the ad. When a company produces a commercial, their main objective is to get their product to sell. This is a multibillion-dollar industry and the advertisers study all the ways that they can attract their audience’s attention. The producers of advertisements have many tactics and strategies they use when producing an ad to get consumers to buy their product. These include things such as rhetorical appeals, logical fallacies, and “the male gaze.” The function of marketing is to either increase the number of customers or increase the rate of use among current customers. The number of customers can be increased by converting customers from competing brands, developing loyalty to the brand among current customers, or expanding the total market for the product class. “The more ads they make, the more they in turn have to make in order to get our attention, it’s led to a vicious circle of clutter” (PBS Frontline: The Persuaders). Advertising is a battle of which company can fill up the most empty wall space. Consequently, cities turn into a mass chaos of posters and billboards. Subway tunnels have now been turned into moving pictures, to produce almost a “commercial” if you will. The buses themselves have been turned into moving billboards. Nowadays the thirty-minute block for a television show is about 15 minutes worth of advertisements and 15 minutes of the actual show. Along with that, many people are actually being paid to be an advertisement, whether it be standing out in front of a building with a sign, or putting a company decal on their car. Advertisements, likewise, cannot be escaped. However, often advertisers have to be sure and not “over do” their advertisements, or else the audience in which they are trying to appeal to will become annoyed.
Old Spice, a major company for men’s hygienic products, has created a line of men’s body wash that has a very appealing and humorous advertising campaign. These ads are designed not only to get their product noticed in the marketplace, but also to eclipse other lines of men’s body wash. The Old Spice commercials imply that by using their product, a man will be or become more similar to the Old Spice man, or in other words, the ultimate man. The Old Spice advertisements capture men by reaching out to the needs of women, giving the ideal image of what a man should be and how he should smell, and by creating a sexual theme that attracts attention. The bottles used for all Old Spice products have red incorporated within the design. This is because red is the color of attraction. That is why red always surrounds Valentine's day. Red can also signify power and strength. The Old Spice design tries to go with a classic, authentic look. It wants to appeal to a variety of ages. It has a very sophisticated look (Keitel). In our society, an extremely smart and effective way of selling a product designed for men is to appeal to women. Women have many opinions on commercials that deal with men’s products, and if they like the commercials, they will be more apt to either buy the product themselves or influence the men they know to buy it. Advertisers not only use sexual appeals to attract attention to their ads, but to position their brands as sexual and to suggest that sex-related benefits can ensue to the brand purchasers. In Old Spice’s current ad campaign, there are a series of commercials using different actors and sports stars that are very fit and good looking to highlight their body wash. In the ad they use ex-NFL wide receiver Isaiah Mustafa, promoting elements of masculinity, sex appeal, and humor. In the ad, Mustafa is coming out of a shower...
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