Industry Has Perfected the Use of Advertising Research Paper

Pages: 5 (1577 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 5  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Business - Advertising

¶ … industry has perfected the use of advertising to create branding identity than the fashion industry (Fox, 2010). Through the use of imagery the fashion industry has been able to position certain product lines and styles as symbols of success and prosperity. Manufacturers such as Burberry, Gucci, and Prada have effectively placed their ads in magazines, newspapers, and television programs in such a manner as to create an air of exclusivity that has correspondingly created an increased demand for their products. This has all been done through repetition and attractive imagery.

The cost of the products marketed by manufacturers such as Burberry, Gucci, and Prada make their availability limited to only the most affluent members of society but they portray a life-style that becomes the ideal for everyone (Gers, 2009). Through the use of high-priced photography, beautiful models, and sports and entertainment celebrities, advertisers have been able to manipulate the general public's attitudes toward what is stylish, what denotes success, and how the rich and powerful are supposed to look.

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Interestingly, the various high fashion manufacturers have contributed significantly to the creation of niche magazines that depend heavily upon advertising by such manufacturers for their existence. Popular magazines inside the United Kingdom such as Elle or W. dedicate over 50% of their available publication space to advertising placed by manufacturers of products that the general public cannot begin to afford. All of these advertisements depict a life-style and products that are depicted in such a manner as to convey an ideal. Although each of the manufacturers is promoting their own products they are also joining together to create a symbiotic imagery that inures to all their benefit. In reality, the editorial content of such magazines becomes secondary. The advertisements are the main attraction of such publications and thousands purchase such magazines to discover what is stylish and fashionable.

Research Paper on Industry Has Perfected the Use of Advertising Assignment

The imagery that is created through these high fashion magazines goes beyond the parameters of usual print advertising. The imagery in magazines such as Elle and W. approaches a level of production that could be considered art. The advertisers depend heavily upon the expressive use of color, shading, and physical posturing that creates a style that lends credence to the product's branding. The beauty of the ad is seen by the reader as being transferred to them and that by wearing or using the product the reader will become as beautiful, as successful, and confident as the image in the advertisement. Once this has been done by the advertiser, the branding has become successful and the manufacturer has become identified as a mark of success and power.

The artsy nature of this type of advertising tends to take on more importance than the actual product. The vibrant colors, creative lighting, the beautiful models, and famous celebrities take center stage and the product itself is secondary. What the advertiser is attempting to achieve is the creation of a life-style (Osselaer, 2000). The product's appearance and intrinsic value is secondary to how it fits into the overall imagery that the advertiser is attempting to create. The advertiser is attempting to connect with the demographic group that is most apt to purchase the product but also promote the life-style that other readers of the magazine can only dream of enjoying.

The criticism against this form of advertising is that it creates an imagery and life-style that is unattainable (Ahuvia, 1998). The imagery is presented as real but, in reality, it is purely illusory. They present individuals who are perfectly dressed, perfectly proportioned, and perfectly looking. Such advertising in the use of women characterizes them as glamorous sexual beings and ignores their more realistic roles as wives and mothers. The result of such advertising is to place unrealistic expectations on women. They are forced to live up to standards of style and grace that are impossible to obtain. These standards have been manufactured and promoted by an advertising industry that has little or no basis in reality but that have been presented as an ideal through repetition and glorification.

These perfect images cause the general public to question their own value. For those who lack the perfect looks presented by these forms of advertising, there is the constant questioning and doubt created by what are the inevitable failure that most of society feels in not being able to live up to the standards set by the advertising industry. Only a select few in all of society are ever able to live in the fashion projected through advertising but all are measured against the ideal projected through advertising. Such advertising is a form of manipulation and is not intended to be used as an information device. Instead, the advertisements distort life and fail to accurately reflect the actual quality of life. Such advertising appeals to a segment of society that must deal with the frustrations of everyday life and view the advertisements as an escape from such drudgery. Unfortunately, many of such individuals are unable to differentiate between the reality and fantasy and adopt the fantasy as their reality which is the original goal of the advertising industry.

The field of semiotics has developed to study the effect of words and symbols (Beasley, 2002). The results of these studies has been used effectively and frequently by the advertising industry. The analysis of these studies has afforded advertisers with the opportunity of building brand identification among consumers. Through advertising consumers are made aware of products and begin to develop positive associations and long-term loyalty to these products. According to semiotic theory, such branding is accomplished through the use of signs and symbols. Over time, consumers begin associating the signs and symbols used in the advertisements and beginning valuing products based upon the success of their advertising message and not on the basis of the actual quality of the product.

Proponents of semiotics argue that communication through marketing and advertising gradually develop into cultural products and that the images created through advertising become inseparable from consumer's perceptions. These consumer perceptions allow advertisers to manipulate the market place and create an ideological and fashionable world where certain manufacturers such as Burberry and Gucci dictate styles, aesthetics, and social identifications as to power and success.

The magic of semiotics is that through its use a successful advertiser or marketer can take a recognized product and develop it so that it becomes a not only a product but a cultural icon. In doing so, the advertising professional causes the product to become so culturally ingrained in the thinking of the consumer that the consumer cannot articulate how society would be without it. In the case of the two product manufacturers cited herein, Burberry and Gucci, they have become to be identified with high quality but the typical consumer does not know why. Advertising has told them that this is the case and that is what the consumer believes without anything more.

The role of semiotics in advertising is to allow those involved in the advertising process to identify trends in popular culture, to understand how consumer attitudes are formed relative to popular culture, and how marketing and advertising can be used to meet the needs of consumers. Although the application of semiotics is vague, it relies heavily upon visible factors and based on the idea that our current culture is a visible one and that our other senses are subordinate to vision in determining how individuals interpret their world.

Modern advertisers recognize the importance of visualization in the process of product branding and have utilized visualization successfully to sell products. This means that advertisers have utilized visualization techniques across the board beginning with the use of colorful, attention getting advertisements in magazines, fancy and unique packaging, and prominent displays in retail locations. Branding has become a major focus of the advertising… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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