Advertizing’s 15 Basic Appeals (by Jib Fowles)
Do you stop and think about it before you purchase the latest (most fashionable) product on the market, or do you take time to decide if you really want something before you buy it? Haven’t you ever wondered how advertisers get you to buy their product? Hmm…well, advertisers are much more thoughtful than most people think. Read the list of 15 basic appeals advertisers use and then post a paragraph telling me what you think about these appeals. Think of commercials and products you’ve seen advertised, and tell me if you see advertisers drawing on these appeals.
Advertising’s 15 Basic Appeals, by Jib Fowles
(from “Mass Advertising As Social Forecast”)
- Need for sex– surprisingly, Fowles found that only 2 percent of the television ads, he surveyed used this appeal. It may be too blatant, he concluded, and often detracts from the product.
- Need for affiliation– the largest number of ads use this approach: you are looking for friendship? Advertisers can also use this negatively, to make you worry that you’ll lose friends if you don’t use a certain product.
- Need to nurture– every time you see a puppy or a kitten or a child, the appeal is to your paternal or maternal instincts.
- Need for guidance– a father or mother figure can appeal to your desire for someone to care for you, s you won’t have to worry. Betty Crocker is a good example.
- Need to aggress– we all have had a desire to get even, and some ads give you this satisfaction.
- Need to achieve– the ability to accomplish something difficult and succeed identifies the product with winning. Sports figures as spokespersons project this image.
- Need to dominate– the power we lack is what we can look for in a commercial “master the possibilities.”
- Need for prominence– we want to be admired and respected; to have high social status. Tasteful china and classic diamonds offer this potential.
- Need for attention– we want people to notice us; we want to be looked at. Cosmetics are a natural for this approach.
- Need for autonomy– within a crowded environment, we want to be singled out, to be a “breed apart.” This can also be used negatively: you may be left out if you don’t use a particular product
- Need to escape– flight is very appealing; you can imagine adventures you cannot have; the idea of escape is pleasurable
- Need to feel safe– to be free from threats, to be secure is the appeal of many insurance and bank ads
- Need for aesthetic sensations-beauty attracts us, and classic art or dance makes us feel creative, enhanced
- Need to satisfy curiosity-facts support our belief that information is quantifiable and numbers and diagrams make our choices seem scientific
- Psychological needs– Fowles defines sex (item no.1) as a biological need, and so he classifies our need to sleep, eat, and drink in this category. Advertisers for juicy pizza are especially appealing late at night.
Source: Media Impact Introduction to Mass Media (4th Ed) Author: Shirley Biagi, Wadsworth For a the complete articla go to: http://producer.csi.edu/cdraney/archive-courses/spring05/cld_102_spring05/e-texts/15-basic-appeals.pdf OR http://www.cyberpat.com/shirlsite/education/essay2/jfowles.html
If you’d like, you can use this as a source for your essay #3 (if you’re writing about advertizing.)