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“Advertising is a racket, like the movies and the brokerage business. You cannot be honest without admitting that its constructive contribution to humanity is exactly minus zero.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

Advertising can be described as the practice of satisfying a communication objective. Advertising fits into a business’ Marketing plan. Ad campaigns are designed to turn a potential customer towards an advertised product or service. Advertising has the ability to stimulate 4 communication effects – category need, brand awareness, brand attitude and brand purchase intention (Percy and Rosenbaum-Elliot, 2016).

We started the class by watching a short clip of a video titled ‘Ads that changed the world’, with our guest lecturer Helen Robinson. We saw how when the denim trend which was extremely popular in the 60s and 70s started to die, in the 80s Levi’s and their ad agency came up with a campaign that made the Levi’s 501 sales explode to an 800% growth in 2 years. There was also a great tv commercial featuring Jane Fonda endorsing Lux soap and it’s luxurious qualities.

After the youtube video we discussed what aspects of advertising have remained since the 60s 70s and 80s and what has changed. The trends that have remained are the use of celebrities to endorse products and the act of telling stories about products or services. The main changes we discussed are that the people view media differently these days. Electronic media, more especially social media, more and more ways to deliver advertising. People used to watch television as a family due to their being only one screen in a household. But nowadays there are typically more than one screen in a household so people watch what they prefer and the advertising they are exposed to is influenced by their choice of show. Helen also mentioned that in research she was involved with 10 years ago, that people only watched 10% of advertising on tv.

Before lunch we did a fun group exercise where we had to choose an advert by category and analyse it. Thereafter we had to present to the class. My category was cartoons and I chose Red Bull TV commercials. In my opinion the creative content was humourous and featured a man who was able to take vengeance on a bird which had dropped it’s ‘waste’ on him. The target audience I identified was people who consume energy drinks, people who need a burst of energy or to stay awake and possibly party-goers. The intended message of the ad I selected is that Red Bull gives you extra energy or possibly extra powers as they would like you to believe. The medium chosen is animation as it is cheap and easy to produce and allows for many videos within a campaign and to come up with concepts quickly. This signature style of Red Bull campaigns makes their advertising recognisable and easy to identify. Although their ads are light and bring laughter, I find it ironic as they are selling an unhealthy product which is expensive and probably not needed by most people in fairness. But perhaps a great example of the power of advertising and branding.

After lunch we were tasked with coming up with an ad idea for Boloye Bubbly, an English sparkling wine. The ad had to be a Christmas ad intended for the French market and had to be in video format. My partner for the exercise, Ruby, had a great idea of a married couple to introduce the brand to the French Market. Our ad concept had a French man, buying his British wife a bottle of Bolaye Bubbly as a surprise christmas gift. The wife was blindfolded and had to guess the origin of the sparkling wine. After her multiple guesses, which were all based in French wine regions, the husband reveals that the bubbly is, in fact, British.

I always had the belief that if your product or service is string enough, you would not need to do any advertising. I guess part of me still wants to believe that this is true. But there are only a few brands that have the luxury of not needing to advertise. With regards to Babatunde, I always had great concepts for campaigns and the images for these campaigns. However I seldom had the budget to place the campaigns in on media platforms where I feel we could have got the best exposure.


Percy, L. and Rosenbaum-Elliot, R. (2016) Strategic Advertising Management. Fifth Edition: Oxford.

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Published by fortysomethingrebirth

I am a South African from Jo'burg. I love football, music (mainly from the Caribbean) and design. I am currently studying a Masters of Managing in the Creative Economy at Kingston University in London.

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