Analyze a print advertisement to determine what strategies are involved in selling the product.

• Length will be a minimum of 3 sides of A4 when typed.
• You will work on three drafts. These will all be typed.
• Use 12 point New Roman font and double-space your essay.
• Leave 1” (2.5cm) margins top, bottom, left and right and staple your work in the top left hand corner. Supply a plastic folder (side-opening).
• Type your personal details in the top left corner of the front page (full name, ID number, course, section, date of submission).
• Provide a suitable title for your essay and center it on the first page after your details.
• Provide an outline and a Reference page. (Use APA formatting)
• Your essay should be carefully proofread and checked for typing and other errors before submission.

Choose a recent advertisement for any product from a current magazine, newspaper, or the Internet, and examine it carefully to see how and why it appeals to its target audience. Consider what lifestyle choices are being presented along with the product or service being offered. Deconstruct the persuasive techniques. Then, form your own analysis of how that advertisement achieves its manipulations of a particular audience, and support your evaluation of it.

• Formulating an original thesis
• Describing a message to make analysis meaningful to one’s audience.
• Using analysis of a primary source to produce thoughtful and interesting content.
• Interpreting and explaining the persuasive power of a message.
• Supporting controlling ideas with sufficient detail from a primary source.
• Using a secondary source as a tool for analysis.
• Demonstrating an ability to analyze.
• Addressing an audience.
• Expressing ideas clearly and coherently.
• Revising based on teacher/peer comment and self-evaluation.

Points to Consider:
• Where was this advertisement found? Who is the audience for the ad? What are the underlying assumptions of the advertisement?
• How does the advertisement that you have selected achieve its purpose? What is the main message? Is the appeal directed at a particular age group?
• Why is it visually compelling or attractive? Is there a photograph, photomontage, illustration or cartoon? Has a celebrity been used in this particular campaign? If so, do you think the use of the celebrity endorsement will be successful in encouraging the target consumer to buy the product? Why? Why not?
• Is the language of the text memorable? Are there any linguistic features such as puns, rhyme or alliteration? Are there any metaphors or is there a joke? Is the language arresting, using ploys like sex, humour, fantasy, surrealism or fear to capture the observer’s attention?
• Is the layout done in a particular way? Look at font size and colour, underlining, bold type and background. Where is the key message located in relation to the illustration?
• What is particular about the language use? Does it seem fair and reasonable for the product concerned? Is there a logo, a brand name, a motto, a web address or other information? What overall effect does this give?
• Does the advertisement perpetuate any stereotypes? How? Does it define beauty (either masculine or feminine)? Does it encourage unhealthy habits? Does it magnify or exaggerate the importance of
material possessions?

Steps in the Process:
1. Discuss your advertisement with a peer in class and brainstorm ideas about the advertiser’s persuasive strategies and assumptions about the target audience.. Read this assignment sheet again and make sure that you understand the task, purpose and audience.
2. Prepare a short oral presentation about the features of this advertisement and your response to it. Share your analysis with your group in class.
3. Write your first draft.
4. Re-draft carefully, taking into account the advice given and comments made. Proofread carefully before resubmitting.

Required Reading: (You will find these in Course Documents of Blackboard)

“You and Your Shadow” by Seth Stevenson

Schrank, Jeffrey. The Language of Advertising Claims. Retrieved
September 6, 2005 from The Academic Homepage of John B.

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