The field of advertising is always shaped by the changing nature of the society. In most of the times the society changes its attitudes and feelings towards various products. These calls for a change in the nature of commercials that are produced in order to reach the consumers whose tastes and preferences have changed. When one analyses this commercials, it is possible to see that the adverts follow the changing attitudes of the consumers so that they can achieve the intent for advertising. Attitude, defined by Hoyer, (2009) as those general and enduring feelings of what is positive or negative and the judgments that are associated with this feelings. Attitude therefore leads to formation of evaluated judgments which therefore affects the rational process of decision making. Due to the role of peoples attitude towards decision making, advertising consultants takes the nature of the changing attitudes before they place their commercials. This is because if the commercials respect the changing nature of the society, the social order accepts the commercials and thus the impact of the commercial is felt.
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This paper examines how Attitudes and changing attitudes are used in the development of advertisements. The paper also examines the role of attitude as well as the role of changing attitudes in the success of the paper. To make this analysis, two contemporary television as well as online commercials has been used. The first commercial is for a soft drink manufacturing company titled Pepsi MAX - Diner 2pointZero where the giant soft drinks maker advertizes its calorie free cola. Targeting the mature population, this commercial is utilizes mature characters for it to appeal to the targeted generation. The other advert that shall be used for the purpose of completing this paper and analyzing the role of attitude as well as changing attitude in commercials shall be H & M’s designed to advertise its products to the youthful generation who are more fashion conscious. The links to the two commercials can be accessed at the reference page.
The role of attitude in the process of decision making cannot be ignored. Attitude affects the cognitive processing of information by giving the mind a perceived notion of correctness or otherwise over a specific subject. It is this perception that makes people make decisions on what to pursue as opposed to those that they should transgress. With this in mind, advertisers have continually read the prevailing attitude to ensure that the adverts are in line with the popular attitudes. Commercials therefore must reflect the changing nature of people’s attitudes, a fact that makes commercials to be changed often to ensure that they are not obsolete in the message that they want to convey. The persuasive nature of attitude plays a pivotal role among the advertisers hence its widespread use in advertisements.
In Pepsi MAX - Diner 2pointZero commercial, the dominant attitude about the eating habit is widely utilized in its development. The advert which targets the mature generation carries a theme of health consciousness, where the populace increases its awareness over what it consumes. The concept of a health consciousness remains a dear topic to the aging population who may start experiencing the effects of aging and diet related infections. With the knowledge that the mature generation in the age bracket above forty five years and sixty five years, roughly, is more conscious on the amount of calories that it consumes more than the youthful populace, the advertisement has used people who falls in this age bracket to advertise a product that seeks the attention of the market due to its zero calorie content. This reflects a general trend among the mentioned age bracket to reduce the amount of calorie intake to avoid diet related infections.
The commercial utilizes the general public attitudes in a number of ways. To begin with it uses people whose body size falls within the confines of the “ideal” size. The protagonist who orders the product being advertised is not only well shaped but appears to have taken good care of his health. With a population that is increasingly changing its values towards the acceptable body size, the advert perfectly utilizes the general attitude to market the product. The advert therefore helps to shape the prospective consumer’s beliefs about the product, especially creating the notion that the consumers of Pepsi zero calorie products have nothing to worry about the weight gain associated with carbonated drinks. This further changes the prospective consumer’s tendency towards the product where by the perceived consumer-product relationship is changed from products that should be avoided, to a product that should be consumed without worrying on the issue of the weight gain.
The advert also utilizes attitude to direct the prospective consumers towards believing that the product has nothing to do with weight gain. It also leads the consumes towards believing that any competitors product may not meet the threshold of this product as despite that it is a diet soft drink, it maintains the taste of the original Pepsi drink. It uses emotional appeals towards convincing the prospective consumers that they need not worry over the extra calorie to the extent that they compromise their tastes and preferences, the product can retain the original taste while at the same time, be free from calories. This form of emotional appeal hits to the backbone of the changing attitude of the society towards what they consume. Today the society is more health conscious more than it was several decades ago.
Lantos (2010) advices that advertisers should use the society’s attitude to ensure that they create relationships that last between the product and the consumers. This commitment is created when the consumer’s ego is highly involved in the process of making their choices. The role of an advert therefore should be to utilize the attitude of the society to ensure that the ego of the consumers appears to be boosted. For instance the identified Pepsi commercial touches on this aspect efficiently. As the commercial comes to its end, the regular consumer of Pepsi max appears to win the battle after they appear fighting with the other protagonist. This may boost the ego of the product consumers that it has a lot to do with the improvement of the ego of its users. This therefore is an indication that the general attitude that men should be able to defend themselves when confronted is utilized to boost the ego of those who consume the product, a sign that attitude plays an important role min the advertisement fraternity.
H & M’s commercial on the other hand is purely based on the new attitudes towards the way people dress. The commercial that starts with a youthful girl who falls under the category of the American perceived beauty driving a good convertible car, a source of pride to many young people, throwing away all her clothes including the ones she had previously won is based on the changing attitudes in the society over dressing as well as the position of nudity in the society. Although the society still has strong respect for the social order that prohibits nudity in public spheres, the general acceptance of this behavior has relatively changed. Today, nudity is not viewed with the common view that it used to be viewed in the past. Secondly, the advert utilizes the changing attitude of a fashion conscious youthful generation that spends a fortune on self grooming.
The advert utilizes the changing attitudes towards nudity and self grooming and how this issue, especially the later attracts the right people. For instance the youthful lady used in the advert attracts the attention of two youthful men who marvel at her even before she threw away her clothes. This is later followed by further positive admirations when the girl purchases new clothes with the label of the company on the shopping bags. The girl later speeds-off leaving the two gentlemen stunned by her beauty especially after she dresses on the new clothes that she purchases. This advert utilizes the changing attitude towards fashion especially among the youths to create a liking effect among the potential customers. The advert has fully utilized the attitude towards the ideal female who snatches the attention of her male counterparts. The advert therefore has the capacity to create a bandwagon effect to other potential consumers especially due to the attention the girl used in the commercial receives.
The identified commercials also utilize the concept of social proof, an important aspect of attitude, towards reaching their audience. Social proof is credited with its capacity to create a bandwagon effect, a fact that makes it possible for the products being advertised to be accepted by the majority of the prospective consumers. The idea of social proof helps in advancing the likability of a product by showing that what is approved by others is certainly good for consumption (Solomon 2009). By asking for confirmation from a colleague at the dinner table in the Pepsi advert concerning the percentage content of calories in the Pepsi Max drink, the advert manages to utilize social proof to show that product has social popularity due to its success. In the H & M’s commercial, social proof is utilized by the nature of approval that the young lady receives from his audience.
Another way that attitude is utilized in these commercials is by use of likability of the protagonist which is marked by two key components, which are attractiveness and likability. The two commercials utilize people whose physical stature is attractive and which enhances the likability of the commercials. For instance, the H & M’s commercial utilizes a beautiful lady with a sporty vehicle which attracts the young men in the vicinity. Pepsi’s commercial on the other hand utilizes similarity when they use a renownedd person in the commercial. The centre of attraction in the advert revolves around Richard Speight, well known for his role in supernatural series as Gabriel. The similar character in the commercial therefore changes the attitudes of the consumers through its likability of the product.
Having examined how the identified commercials have used attitude and the changing attitude to communicate their message, it is important to analyze whether the commercials have the capacity to influence consumer behavior. Pepsi’s commercial has utilized more aspects of attitude and its changing nature and thus has a high capacity to influence the consumer behavior. To begin with, its utilization of the changing attitude towards the diet and the rise of health consciousness make it appealing to consumers who may avoid soft drinks due to the high calories percentage. The fact that it uses a clincher that despite the zero percent content of calories, it maintains the original Pepsi taste makes it evoke the urge among consumers to use the product. This therefore has a huge capacity in influencing the consumption behavior of the populace.
Pepsi commercial also utilizes the similarity model where by it chooses well known personalities for the advertisement; this therefore has the capacity to evoke the populace to like the product especially due to the role played by the renowned figure. Since the commercial evokes likability of the product due to the bandwagon effect of the renowned persons used in the commercial, it has the capacity to influence the consumer purchase behavior. The acting also may trigger a conative reaction from the target audience who may want to change probably from the competitor’s product thus increasing the sales and revenues generated from the product line. This conative reaction may get triggered from the fact that the main protagonist in the commercial actually changes from a different product other than what he was used to take. This may create the craving effect among the potential consumers who later develop relationship with the product.
H & M’s commercial is also effective in influencing the consumer behavior. The commercial seems to suggest indirectly that no clothes are worth to cover precious bodies other than those from H & M. Besides this; the main protagonist in the commercial attracts necessary attention from the right people, a fact that may have great influence among the targeted clientele. Since the commercial is designed to reach the youthful generation, the association of the product with the percent ideals of the modern youth has a capacity to create the effect of association of H & M’s product and youthful success. This therefore may lead to improved performance of the product among the youthful consumers which would therefore result to an influence in the consumer’s decision making process.
H & M’s commercial also has the capacity of influencing consumer behavior due to the value the main protagonist of the commercial places on the products from this company. By walking nude from a clothes’ seller after she damps all her clothes in the seller’s dustbins, she creates the idea that other brands of clothes are not worth being worn by high achievers like her. This therefore creates that attention commanding notion among the youths which increases the attractiveness of the company’s products among this generation. Due to this created attractiveness of the company’s products, the commercial has the capacity to influence the consumption behavior especially among the youthful consumers who are more fashion conscious.
In conclusion, it is worth noting that the identified commercials have utilized the general attitudes of the society as well as the changing societal attitudes to communicate their message. Due to this utilization of attitude, the commercial plays an important persuasive role towards directing other informing the potential consumers of their superiority. They also create the urge to prove the effectiveness of the identified products which further influence the consumer’s decision making process. The commercials also utilizes attitude to create the notion of superiority of products over those of the competitors, while the Pepsi’s main protagonist drinks down the drink handed over to him while leaving what he was initially served in his order, the main protagonist of the H & M’s commercial totally abandons all her clothing for the sake of the products that have strictly been produced by H & M. this shows that the identified products are of superior quality compared to those that are produced by the main competitors. The adverts therefore are proof that the role of attitude in advertising should not be underscored. The commercials also show the importance of ensuring that all commercials are in line with the popular attitudes of the society to ensure that they remain relevant in the market.