alright. i have a COM203 quiz next week, and i’m finally (about time) to start studying. just started on advertising. then stopped because i stumbled upon this blog that was apparently written by a comms major student in 2007. he mentions very interesting theories about advertising, most of which i haven’t learnt about (yet?).
actually, the parts of my course covered in advertising is just the bare surface, i think. seriously, i only remember all the adverts shown to us, some of which i have posted on FB. but now looking back at my notes, there are some interesting theory-based content. which is why i like my major-most of the time, with due respect to all the scientists and researchers, studying doesn’t really feel like studying because you’re not mugging some formulae that some unknown ah gong came up with.
For one, there is advertising post-modernism.
Post-modernism is the stretching of boundaries. It deals with being ultra creative, avoiding traditional routes. It questions the existence of ideals that we have in place e.g. being rational/objective. It attracts attention without instilling ideals that most traditional ads bombard us with. Thus, it stands out and make an impact. I took this definition from the blog mentioned above.
The above two ads were shown in lecture. My favourite one among the three is this:
Also, there is the concept of commodity self.
Do you like branded goods? If so, you believe that what you buy says something about who you are. What we buy or use communicates a message about our lifestyle, attitudes and what we believe in. This is something that advertising has given rise to. Advertising encourages people to see an encoded message in commodities, which others then decode, to learn more about you. Advertising gives messages like wealth, sexiness, good taste or elegance to products or brands which they would otherwise not have.
“You can tell the ideals of a nation by its advertisements.” -Norman Douglas
Advertising also influences our country’s ideals. Besides influencing people on what choices to make, what things to buy and so on, advertising also communicates societal ideals about lifestyle, personal image, attitudes and beliefs. Due to the widespread reach of advertising, it has the potential to make a mass audience think a certain way. Like, women must be super thin or the hunky image of alpha males. In turn, the majority of the people will be unified in their thinking and eventually it becomes a nation ideal.
Lastly, there is the shift in advertising trends, from “society marketing” to “segment marketing.” Advertising has always been focused on swaying a large group of audience towards a particular product or service. However, as the market begins to be saturated with more and more products, there is an increasing focus on differentiating products, showcasing special/unique aspects of their products that appeal to a certain group of people only. I think this comes with the increasing desire for individualism, and ‘making a statement’, not wanting to be ‘just like the rest.’ Hence, instead of grouping consumers into, for example female singles 18-34, married females 20-40 etc, we have fashionistas, skater girls, soap housewives and emos.
ok, just to end with a..quote of the day.
” ‘他喜欢吃草’ means he likes to eat veggies right? “
the guy sitting beside me in the LT asked his friend. i was eating old chang kee, and i wanted to either
- spit out my curry puff and laugh hard
- smack my curry puff in his face
in the end i just continued eating my curry puff quietly.