Advertising is the chief profitable industry in the United States today. Billboards, signs, magazines, newspapers, radios, televisions, and computers are just some of the places where advertisements are found. At the heart of any one companys advertising campaign is the consumer. The consumer has complete control of their own money and can choose to buy any product or service they desire. Advertising does not control the consumers on what they buy. It only informs them on what they can buy. This is known as consumer sovereignty. It is the responsibility of the company to develop an advertising campaign that generates a demand for their product or service. A company usually promotes a product or service by means of appealing to a particular group in society. For example, an advertisements target audience could be men between the ages of 25 and 40 or children between the ages of 5 and 10. There are basic needs that all of us, as humans, share and the advertisement agencies incorporate them into their ads. The most dominant needs include sex, affiliation, nurture, guidance, aggression, achievement, dominance, prominence, and attention. An advertisement can appeal to one or more of these needs through the use of colors, words, expressions, and statures illustrated in the ad. A comparison of two advertisements for the same product, but different brand names, will allow one to better understand how a company uses different human needs to sell their product. Two coffee ads, one for Caf Vienna and one for Millstone, will be compared to determine the dominant strategy that each uses to create a desire to buy. The ad for Caf Vienna coffee uses the need for guidance to appeal to middle age coffee drinkers. In contrast, the need for achievement is what attracts middle age coffee drinkers to Millstone brand coffee.
The colors observed in the coffee ads are supportive of the individual needs they appeal to. The Caf Vienna ad has a color fade effect to it. It starts with dark black and deep orange and fades to a light yellow almost white in the center. This supports the need for guidance because the use of color gives the person reading it a sense that they are being lead towards the light at the end of a tunnel. On the other hand, the bright reds, blues, whites, and yellows found in the Millstone ad support the need for achievement. These colors represent happy and cheerful feelings. When a person makes an attempt at something and is successful he or she is most likely to be pleased and in high spirits.
The words and expressions used in the ads are also supportive of the needs they appeal to. Drift purposely through life., the phrase used in the Caf Vienna ad, makes it obvious that drinking this brand of coffee with help lead the consumer with a purpose through life. The need for guidance is again proven to be the dominant strategy in this advertisement. Underneath the picture in the Millstone coffee ad it says Design enthusiast Paige Davis lights up a room with our foglifter blend. This sentence maintains the need for achievement in the ad because it appears to the reader that by drinking their coffee you could be as successful as Paige Davis, the designer. Taste Whats Out There., another phrase used in the Millstone ad also supports the need for achievement. This is because accomplishment comes with experience. So if you taste a little bit of everything thats out there then you have received the experience for success.
Lastly, the images depicted in the advertisements support the needs they appeal to. The Caf Vienna ad includes a picture of two people in a canoe, on a still lake, paddling off towards the sunset and surrounding mountains. Ahead in their path is a shallow area where some grass is protruding from the lake bottom. The faces of the two people in the canoe are not visible. All the reader can see is the backs of the people as they paddle away into the sunset. In this image it appears that the people in the canoe are headed towards the sunset, so the sun is guiding them on their journey. The human need for guidance is again strongly supported by the image in this ad. In the Millstone coffee advertisement there is an image of Paige Davis, the designer, smiling while holding a sledge hammer in one hand and a coffee mug in the other. Behind her there is a huge hole in a red painted wall where the yellow wall from behind shows through. For clothing, she has on blue jeans and a blue shirt which is dirty with drywall dust from the hole she put in the wall with the sledge hammer. She seems very happy at her accomplishments and the reader is lead to believe it was the coffee that got her where she is today. Again the need for achievement is easily supported in the advertisement for Millstone coffee.
In conclusion, advertisements will play a major role in our lives for generations to come. These days they are showing up in cell phones and on the internet of most computers. In fact special software is available for computers to limit and even block pop-up advertisements because they disrupt and annoy people while browsing the internet. Advertisements draw consumers to a product or service by appealing to natural human needs. This was seen in the comparison between Caf Vienna and Millstone brand coffees. Although these ads were for the same product, the companies involved used very different strategies to lure consumers to their product. The Caf Vienna advertisement appealed to our need for guidance, while the Millstone ad appealed to our need for achievement. Each advertisement appealed to a human need through the use of colors, words, expressions, and illustrations. All advertisements are planned out and target a specific group in society. The target audience for the coffee ads were middle age men or women who drink coffee. Advertisements effect every person everywhere and reflect the attitude of our society. That is why we must understand the concepts behind advertising. No one can predict what new forms advertising may take in the future. But the rapidly increasing cost of acquiring new customers makes one thing certain. Advertisers will seek to hold onto current customers by forming closer relationships with them and by tailoring products, services, and advertising messages to meet their individual needs. So while advertising will continue to encourage people to consume, it will also help provide them with products and services more likely to satisfy their needs.