Compare and Contrast Essay
Billboards, television advertisements, newspapers and magazines are just some of the places where advertisements are found, and at the heart of any one company’s advertising campaign is the consumer. The consumer has complete control of their own money and can choose to buy any of the products or services that are being advertised. It is the company’s job to advertise and sell these products or services to the consumer. There are basic needs that all of us, as humans, share and the advertisement agencies incorporate the ideas of these needs into their ads. The most dominant needs include sex, affiliation, nurture, guidance, aggression, attention, achievement, and prominence. An advertisement can appeal to one or more of these needs of the consumers it is targeting through the use of images and words illustrated. A comparison of two advertisements for differing products will allow one to better understand how a company uses different human needs to sell their product. For this purpose I have chosen to compare and contrast two different wrist watch advertisements.
The first advertisement examined is a wrist watch ad for Breitling. A full page image depicting John Travolta facing fully frontal in an aggressive, almost confrontational pose, attired in aviator gear reminiscent of World War II pilots, is backdropped by the wholly male appeal of a vintage fighter aircraft. Travolta's arms are crossed with the centerpiece watch boldly glittering from his wrist in an otherwise subdued color pallet. As Steve Craig writes in Men's Men and Women's Women, “Men's Men have the unchallenged freedom of a fantasized masculinity – to travel, to be free from commitment, to seek adventure” (Craig 206). This ad seems, at first glance, to be an idealization of the “man's man”, boldly hinting that merely wearing this watch will increase your masculine appeal exponentially. It invokes the inner fantasy of men to become that...