Friday, 28 October 2011

Appeal Techniques

In class we have been learning all sorts of advertising terms and techniques.

One of the major ones is appeal techniques. Ads can have a sexual appeal, positive or negative appeal, lifestyle appeals, humorous appeals and emotional appeals. 

These appeal techniques are the marketers way of playing with our feelings. I find it very interesting how some ads make people feel, like the “I'm a mac, and I'm a PC” ads for example. They were very effective, yet a fair amount of people felt sorry for the PC. I have to admit I felt sorry for the PC too, he's just trying to go about his life while Justin Long rambles on about how much better a Mac is. 

People also tend to get emotionally attached to products, possibly because the product is made out to be a hero in the ads, or because they think their life will be better with that product. This usually happens with cars. Not many people need fast sporty looking cars, yet they all want one. Some people even name their cars, car companies know this and they will play on our weaknesses in the ads. Everyone wants to be the person with the cool car.

To demonstrate whether the need for a product is rational or emotional, the next time you see an ad and feel the need to go out and buy the product it is pushing at you, ask yourself "do I really need this to make my life better? Or will it just make me feel better?"

Friday, 21 October 2011

Its Everywhere

All of this information you are taking in can be quite overwhelming. 

Especially when you have 5 assignments, a test, and a presentation due in the same week. You start to feel like you need a break. But there is no break from advertising, in case you forgot it’s everywhere!

The question is, how much information do we miss? Out of almost thirty people only 1 person remembered what an ad on a 15 minute video was for. The ad stayed in the same place for the entire time. Companies spend tons of money on research to try to determine the best possibly place for ads to be seen by their target audience. Is all of this research accurate?

I believe that it is accurate. Sure, a lot of ads go right by us, we forget about them the second they are over. But if you really think about it, those ads probably aren’t aimed at you. If you are happy with your cell phone, you aren’t going to give cell phone ads a second thought.

On a creepier note, some of these ads are probably getting into our subconscious. Brand loyalty is all in our heads half the time, the other half actually is because the quality of the products. Some people will only buy clothing from a certain brand,  or have water to drink if the restaurant they are at has Coke instead of Pepsi.

Advertisers go to extremes to get that type of insistence. They are good at what they do, and they get the attention of the people they target.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Scary Mary

Commercials on T.V. They can be extremely annoying, or surprisingly entertaining. They are made to make us feel a certain way about what is being sold. Most commercials have happy music playing in the background, this music digs into our subconscious and insists that our life will be happy once we buy the product.

The producers of these ads are pretty much manipulating us, but not necessarily in a bad way, depending on what the product is. In class we were given an article about Nivea "My Silhouette" Cream. Nivea claimed that this new cream could dissolve body fat. A huge lie of course, but people fell for it.

Nivea got in big trouble for this one. The product was discontinued. Now a-days there are restrictions for ads, you can't lie, but you can definitely manipulate. You can cut and paste only the good qualities of what your selling, unless the bad is something crazy and life threatening. 

I find it interesting how much of an impact music has in ads. Music can make us feel happy or sad, it can bring up emotions about certain times in our lives, or remind us of products! I can't really describe how easily our perception can be manipulated, but as long as you're familiar with Mary Poppins and the Shining, these videos will explain everything.
Mary Poppins suddenly becomes a scary horror film, the Shining becomes a happy family bonding movie and Duracell becomes a magical battery that will not only power your headphones, it will clear the smoke for people stuck in a forest fire and bring beams of light to your rainy days! But be reminded, these aren't lies, these are misperceptions. 

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Social Media & Crocs

Its amazing how much social media impacts our lives now.

I don’t think it is a bad thing either, depending on how it is used. I think social media is best used to keep in contact with friends who have moved, or to make last minute plans. It is how we learn what it going on in the world so quickly its almost right away. Back in the old days, when there were no cars or buses, people had to walk or use horses to get from place to place, and sometimes that would take days. Days of no contact with their families. Could you imagine being in the dark like that? People would have no idea what anyone else was up to! 

Crazy right? Today, Crocodile Dundee here would have just whipped out his cell phone and updated his Twitter before he was gobbled up. Do you know how long it would take for someone to find that book?  This guy would have been missing for months before anyone even knew what happened. 

I’ve never really got into Twitter until last week. If you follow the right people, it’s like a constant stream of news. One of my teachers talked about a fight on the Cineplex Staff Twitter, so I started following them. I would still prefer see news on the news, I like having some sort of visual when I hear a story, but you have to wait for that. With twitter, the updates are instant; you know what’s happening to the minute. 

With so much information coming at us I can completely understand why so many people seem to have some sort of ADHD. There is just so much to do at once, it’s hard to keep focused on what matters sometimes, it’s like being in a store full of your favourite foods and you’re only allowed to pick two or three. In those rare moments when we end up in a place with no cell phone/internet reception we run around waving our electronic devices in the air like idiots looking for a signal. Sometimes we just need to chill out, and focus on what is actually in the room with us.