Advertisements inform potential consumers of the availability of a product or service. To achieve high sales, the words and images used in any advertising must be compelling. In addition, legal considerations must be taken into account in marketing. Advertisements have changed over time, with the incorporation of new mediums such as the internet, as well as the differentiation of various age ranges. In the past, advertising emphasized the fact that women had to depend on men, making men seem to be semi-gods. This article would critique two advertisers in order to assess their target demographic and their progress in achieving their goal. The paper will also assess why the advertisement would not be applicable in today’ world.
Chase & Sanborn, 1952: This ad makes light of domestic violence.
The advert by Chase and Sanborn coffee makes domestic violence look like something that ladies have to contend with (Edwards 1). The company seems to reckon that those women who have no desire to improve on their kitchen skills risks being beaten up and it is hence their responsibility to always be updated.
The advert was seemingly made for the stay at home wife whose sole responsibility is to please her man and always aspire to make him fresh and tasty breakfast. The role of women has however changed with most of them getting empowered and having their source of income. Male chauvinism has also been frowned upon and this advert seems to encourage it further. The advert would also not make much appeal in today’s world when domestic violence has been abhorred. Men are encouraged to respect women and a significant number of them also love experimenting in the kitchen.
Alcoa, 1953: Alcoa Aluminum’s bottle caps open “without a knife blade, a bottle opener, or even a husband.”
Women have always been seen as weakling in the society with them always having to rely on men to survive. In this advert, Alcoa Aluminium seems to communicate that it has repacked its sauce and it is now easy to open it without necessarily needed extra force through a knife or a bottle opener (Edwards 1). The sexist thing about this advert is that at the edge it asks, “You mean a woman can open this?” which is also insulting (Edwards 1). This advert was seemingly made for the traditional stay at home women who would always rely on her husband for everything and hence would not survive without him.
Today’s woman is considered strong and capable. Ladies are encouraged to be their own hero and learn to cater for themselves. This advert would hence not appeal in today’s world when ladies understand their place in the society. Women are no longer considered the weaker sex and this advert would also be insulting to a lady that believes in doing things for herself.
Adverts therefore have to adjust to today’s sociological and demographic climate. Ladies have become empowered and companies have to demonstrate respect even when making remarks about their products. Companies that are mindful of their wordings and pictures in their adverts not only experience massive sales but also end up having loyal customers from either gender. It is hence important for the companies to strike a balance between selling the product and emphasizing on their strong points which preferable to a certain gender without looking like sexists.
Edwards, Jim. “26 Sexist Ads That Companies Wish We’d Forget They Ever Made”. Business Insider, 2017, http://www.businessinsider.com/sexist-vintage-ads-2015-9?IR=T/#van-heusen-1951-show-her-its-a-mans-world-2.