Monday, 18 October 2010

Romanticism in Advertising

Romanticism is an artistic movement that emerged in the 18th century as a rebellion against the industrial revolution. Renowned advertiser Tony Kaye has managed to blend the lines between romanticism and advertising in his adverts, creating an experience for the viewer rather than just telling them the product. He has been described as a post-modern creative because of his ability to flow effortlessly between the two fields.

A perfect example of his work that blends these two fields is the advert “Dunlop – Tested for the unexpected” in which he explores the taboo, including images of latex covered daemons and mythical beings whilst including a song by Velvet Underground which was previously banned for its descriptions of bondage. He creates this experience of a sensation that viewers have never experienced before and only at the end does he relate it to the product he is selling.

Tony Kaye works so well in this blurred no mans land between romanticism and advertising because of his total disregard to the views and opinions of his clients, and instead creates an advert which is closer to a piece of art than an advert. He realises that “there are larger forces in our lives which are not easily represented through the conventional means of advertising”

Addidas Rugby Advert

Semiology is the practice of questioning the meaning of images in adverts. It is a far broader tool than compositional interpretation and quantitative estimation, which are far too descriptive and scientific. Semiology on the other hand gives you the tools to take apart adverts and understand how they work in relation to broader systems of meaning.

I have chosen to analyse the Addidas advert for rugby featuring Martin Johnson. It shows an image of Martin Johnson performing a hand-off but as a splatter of mud on a white background. It then has the words “If You Don’t Go In Hard its Not a Tackle, Its an Insult”. This advert uses Code as a way of portraying its message as its target audience is people that play rugby. They have used mud as the image because all rugby players would have experienced a muddy game at least once in their career so can relate to the grit of the image. The quote at the bottom of the image is also geared solely towards rugby players. The word “insult “ is especially relevant because rugby demands a lot of respect from players towards the game and the opposition, so by saying that you haven’t gone into a tackle hard enough is an insult to the player you are trying to tackle. You could say that the message is encoded as it would be lost on people who have never played rugby. The advert also uses myth as it is reliant on people having previous experiences and memories to associate with the advert.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Marks & Spencer 125 yrs Ad

Marks & Spencer 125 yrs Ad

Simon Marks, son of co-founder Michael Marks, came up with the five core principles of which Marks & Spencer’s abides by. These principles are Service, Value, Quality, Innovation and Trust. In 2009 Marks & Spencer celebrated 125 years of retail and brought out a special advert with model Twiggy that incorporated these five values to show audiences of there commitment over the years.

The advert starts in a set up of the old Leeds market where Marks & Spencer had their first ever stall in 1884. It was here that their first ever advertising slogan was born, ‘Don’t ask the price, it’s a penny’. This was because everything they sold at the stall was a penny. As you can see from the outright Marks & Spencer held value for their customers as a major priority. Another form of value shown in the advert is how they were the first to bring in sell-by-dates on perishables. This meant customers could be confident that the food that they bought would not go off before they ate it and there fore would not be wasting their money. Twiggy also says “No one goes further to bring you the best possible food for the fairest possible prices.” This not only shows value for money but also that they are trying to help the farmers from third world countries with fair-trade.

The advert shows that Marks & Spencer care about service because they properly fitted all their clothes and made sure that they were comfortable, especially in woman’s bras. This is evident in the advert when Twiggy says “And we girls were properly fitted in the boob department.”

In terms of quality Marks & Spencer have never cut corners. The advert shows that M&S were the first to do high quality ready-made meals like curry, and this in turn made it a lot easier for housewives, hence the line “Housewives were liberated!” Marks & Spencer quality can also be seen in the part about fair-trade. They claim to have made a tumble-dryable suit, which shows that it is made of the highest quality as it wont be damaged by the heat or movement of a tumble-dryer.

As you can see from the advert, Marks & Spencer were very innovative and came up with many ‘firsts’ in England. They were the first company to import exotic fruits and vegetables, most notably the avocado. This is probably because Michael Marks had connections with Israel and avocadoes are very common there. They were also the first to invent drip-dry clothes and Machine washable suits. This made washing and drying clothes 100 times easier. Twiggy says “They’ve changed the way we eat. They’ve changed they way we dress. Their changing the way we treat our planet.” This last one shows that they are taking steps towards helping the environment like making you pay for plastic bags to discourage people from using so many.

The last value Trust plays into the fact that customers feel that they can trust Marks & Spencer to deliver quality goods at reliable prices. Customers can trust that their food will not go off before the sell-by-date or their suit will not fall apart in the tumble-dryer.