I tolerate curiosity

Tuesday, February 5

Endorsees are the products

In technological determinism, the theory by Marshall McLuhan in the metaphor of the environment, says that the medium is the message. Nowadays, it maybe right. The medium does not contain the message, rather it is the message.
Most mediums are the television, the radio and the Internet. These mediums bring the messages to the audience; most especially the advertisements. Advertisers often use the popularity of the celebrities and other famous personalities to sell their product. Because they know that many people would follow them because of their fame. And consumers would not think whether it is necessary or not; they would immediately buy the product just because they think their celebrity idol uses it.
“In advertising, women’s bodies are used sexually to sell products more often than men’s. A 1997 advertising study showed that white women in roughly 62% of ads were "scantily clad", in bikinis, underwear, etc, while the same was true for 53% of black women. For men, the figure was only 25%. Women were also represented in stances of powerlessness more often, and black women were likely to be featured in animal prints, in predatory poses.”
Mostly women are used to sell products because of the attraction of the viewers to them. This increases the viewer’s interest of the product. They catch the attention of the viewers through their looks, their faces and their sexy bodies. And so the viewers would not think about the product, they would think about the women who endorse the product otherwise.
An example is a sexy commercial of a branded tissue. There are women who use tissues of the said brand. They maybe models, actresses, big personalities, etc. They capture the attention of the viewers through it’s ad on TV; the viewers saw it and will know that that product is good. But what the viewers know is that the tissue is good not the brand because it was what they saw on TV and the brand only follows after.
Viewers don’t think twice about what the advertisement is or to what it is saying to them. They think about the beautiful bodies of women whom they get to see in the commercial. Such commercial was the controversial Ryanair ad for their back-to-school promotions. The company used a scantily clad schoolgirl in their commercial which brought complaints from disturbed citizens. The ad was stopped immediately.
Therefore, in the advertising industry, their way of getting the consumer’s attention and make them buy their products is through their use of what is popularly effective today: the use of celebrities, famous personalities and/or the use of scantily clad girls. This makes the medium, not sending the message but it is the message itself. People would not care about the product or the brand; what they would think about is the beautiful women that they see on the advertisements that use the product. They may say, “Wow! That girl is so beautiful! Maybe it’s because of that thing she’s endorsing.” Or “If Brad Pitt has it, I’ll have it too.” This makes the audience unaware of such things that they will buy and consume; they are just receiving the message that is to buy that product.


· Magazine
o S. Plous and D. Neptune. (1997). Racial and Gender Biases in Magazine Advertising. Psychology of Womens Quarterly .
· Internet
o Gresh, D. (2003). Brio Magazine. Retrieved February 4, 2008, from Brio Magazine Web site: http://www.briomag.com/briomagazine/healthandbeauty/a0004316.html
o Press, T. A. (2008, January 30). International Herald Tribune Europe. Retrieved February 4, 2008, from iht.com: http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2008/01/30/europe/EU-GEN-Britain-Ryanair-Ads.php
o Sobel, T. (2002-2007). Girls, Women + Media Project. Retrieved February 4, 2008, from Girls, Women + Media Project: http://www.mediaandwomen.org/problem.html

No comments: