Romance Intimi Magazine Ad
I did a selection of three ads from Arab magazines: One in which you will find a man and a woman, another one in which you will see only men from different ethnicities and the last one include only women. By analyzing those ads I went over different issues of the advertising industry: The first one being ads showing a domination of males over females, the second one is about dealing with ethnic differences in ads and the third issue is the objectification of women in some ads. In addition to that I also went over differences in promotional strategies like: Mood creation and celebrity marketing.
Aishti Magazine Ad
The first ad to analyze is for Aïshti, a very well-known Lebanese high-end clothing department chain store. This ad creates a very romantic and sensual atmosphere by showing a man and a woman face-to-face with their bodies touching each other. Here, the focus is more on what is going on between those two models than on the clothes they are wearing: Aïshti creates a mood around the clothes it sells. Doing this is a promotional strategy used by many brands because it affects the purchasing decisions of the consumers (MoodSwinger, n.d.). Within this sensual atmosphere we can see clearly a domination of the male model over the female model. What are the signs of domination? First, the women can’t go anywhere there is a wall behind her and the man is in front of her and she is stuck in a small surface that is the elevator room. Second, the man takes the woman’s body in his arms as if he was taking control of her. And third, the women eyes are closed which may be interpreted as her losing one of her senses.
Gillette Magazine Ad
The second ad to analyze is for Gillette M3 Power, one of the best brands in the shaving industry presenting here a product for man. Here also, the ad’s main focus is not on the product itself but on celebrities in the world of sports. This is another promotional strategy used by some companies in their ads. The most important thing in this strategy is to choose the right celebrity who should be someone your consumers would like to relate to (Coto, 2007). Here Gillette asked three prominent figures from the worlds of Tennis, Golf and Soccer to represent their products: Roger Federer, Tiger Woods and Thierry Henri (From right to left). Those 3 sports champions are from different ethnicities: Talking about skin color, Tiger Woods has a dark-colored skin, Thierry Henry has a slightly less dark skin and Roger Federer has bright-colored skin. On this level Gillette made two good decisions to avoid criticism on ethnic differences: First, they positioned Tiger Woods in the center-front which will put them away of critics attacking them of racism against dark skin persons. Second, the digital processing of the celebrities pictures modified the tones to decrease as much as possible the differences in skin color and we can see that it was successful.
Romance Intimi Magazine Ad
The third ad to analyze is for Romance Intimi, a Lebanese lingerie boutique. This ad shows 12 women in lingerie in different squares but the very first square is an exception because it shows also a man we can barely see and to whom we don’t pay attention. The sexual and sensual atmosphere is automatically created by the fact that all those women are half-naked and some of them are in a very sexually provocative position. The most shocking aspect of this ad is the objectification of women: Each woman is represented in a kind of shopping window with a spotlight on top to enlighten what is exposed behind the window. This arise an important question for this ad: What product are you selling, the woman or the lingerie? Unfortunately most of the ads in Lebanon categorize woman in two categories: The first one is the “bimbo” category, which is represented in this ad, and the second one is “the housewife always in her kitchen” category (Bontems, 2009). With this purple background we can call this ad the “purple light district” in reference to the red light district in Amsterdam, an area known for its “window shopping” of prostitutes and its red lights.
To conclude, there are a lot of issues concerned with differences in sex and ethnicity in the world of advertisement. Sometimes those issues are well handed like the Gillette case for example, some ads show a respectful image of women but a male domination and some others show a completely disrespectful image of women by treating them as objects.
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