Thursday, May 8, 2008


When Ian Dapot came to talk to us about advertising, he introduced two popular forms of advertising. For Chanel No. 5 perfume, a sexy fantasy world is created in the commercial. This inspires audience members to buy the product so that they can experience that kind of world. For iPhones, the commercial emphasizes the human interaction with the product. I was intrigued by these two forms of commercial advertising and I wanted to take see if I could find a form of advertising that combined the two or if I could find a third form of advertising unlike either of these. I did both.

Herbal Essences:

Herbal Essences shampoo takes both the fantasy world and product interface into account in its commercials. For example in many Herbal Essences commercials, a woman is seen shampooing her hair and moaning in ecstasy followed by her tossing her perfectly dried and styled hair. This idea helps to convince the audience that the product is sexy but also shows how the product works. The following video is an example of this commercial.

In other commercials the woman is interrupted from her everyday activities by a band of attractive men who come to shampoo her hair. The commercial therefore emphasizes the sexiness of the shampoo as well as showing the end result of the smooth, volumized hair. Below are two examples of these commercials.

Obviously Herbal Essences does a good job of creating a sexy fantasy surrounding its product as well as showing the results of this product. The commercials show the viewer how much better life would be with Herbal Essences and convince them that this shampoo is the best for getting luxurious hair as well as living a sexy fantasy life.

2000 Super Bowl Commercials:

When I started to think about commercials that had nothing to do with what they were advertising, I instantly remembered the dot com commercials from the 2000 Super Bowl. The best commercial that had ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with selling its product was the “We just wasted $2 million” E*Trade commercial. This commercial has nothing to do with the website or with creating a fantasy world where you would desire the website’s uses.

But when I went to look for this commercial I found other wonderful commercials that to me had nothing to do with the product like the one below.

In this video three parrots fly around the pet store and mimic the commercial below. But parrots in a pet store have nothing to do with Budweiser. Obviously this commercial was a sequel to the "Wazzup" commercial below, but even that one has nothing to do with Budweiser except for the fact that they are holding the cans and watching the game. One could argue that that is the fantasy world that Budweiser was trying to create in the commercial, but it seems like a bit of a stretch.

Another great one from Budweiser that year was the "How are you doing" commercial which just continued to poke fun at the original “Wazzup” commercial.

And finally there is this video, which is the hand puppet sharing in the pain of lonely pets. This again has nothing to do with the products sold at

As you can see there are many different reasons that commercials are effective. Channel No. 5 sells because of its sent and because of its glamorous reputation. The iPhone sells because it is sleek, elegant, and easy to use. Herbal Essences sells because it is sexy and because it makes you hair feel softer and more voluminous. E* sells because it is easy and straight forward to use. Maybe the commercial above doesn't represent that, but it makes you curious about the website. Budweiser sells because it is about the game and hanging out with friends. Budweiser also has the sense to make fun of itself and carry out a joke like "Wazzup" into other realms and contexts, which helps it sell even more. sells because the hand puppet is cute and because it is a good place for you to find pet products with ease. Though some of these advertising methods are more effective than others, they all seem to work well as advertising techniques.

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