Relating the Visual and the Headline in Chinese Print Advertisements
01 May 2007-Visible Language (University of Cincinnati)-Vol. 41, Iss: 2, pp 163
TL;DR: Based on classical rhetoric, Gui Bonsiepe's visual/verbal figures and other literature sources including Chinese ones, this paper examined the relationship between the visual and the headline in 1,562 Chinese print advertisements collected from Longyin Review.
Abstract: The most important components in modern print advertisements are the visual and the headline. The interplay between these two components is poorly understood, and is typically judged by experience, feelings or common sense. Based on classical rhetoric, Gui Bonsiepe's visual/verbal figures and other literature sources including Chinese ones, this paper examines the relationship between the visual and the headline in 1,562 Chinese print advertisements collected from Longyin Review-the only Chinese creative advertising reference periodical. The study develops a typology for analyzing these relationships from two aspects: Physical and Conceptual. The physical aspect looks at the visual ordering of the visual and the headline, and the conceptual aspect concerns the ways in which these two components jointly form and present creative ideas. The typology provides a new tool for Chinese advertising practitioners to review their own or other people's work and it supplements what Bonsiepe has done. The findings compare the data in different ways and draw preliminary conclusions on the linkages between the various physical and conceptual relationships. INTRODUCTION Visual and headline in print advertisements interact in different ways and are likely to result in different presentations of the creative message. Most practitioners emphasize the manipulation of these interactions but seldom produce concise definitions. 'Work together' and 'complementary' (Cotzias, 1999) are the most widely used definitions, but these can only give a very broad and general idea. Jim Aitchison, the former creative director of Singapore's Batey Ads suggests that there are two modes in the relationships of visual and headline-"a bent headline with a straight picture" and "a straight headline with a bent picture" (Aitchison, 1999). 'Bent' means containing a twist or a shock and 'straight' means straightforward. But his conclusions are not totally clear. Some scholars give us a better answer. They have broken fresh ground in analyzing modern print advertisements during the past two decades by using the discipline of classical rhetoric. However, most of their studies aim to explore the use of rhetoric either in the headline or in the visual; employing rhetorical figures to evaluate consumer comprehension and liking (e.g. Beltramini & Blasko, 1986; Hitchon, 1991; Howard & Barry, 1988; Mcquarrie & Mick, 1992 & 1993; Philips, 2000; Scott, 1994; Tom & Eves, 1999; Unnava & Burnkrant, 1991). Only a few of them have touched lightly on the relationships between visual and headline (Houston, Childers & Heckler, 1987; Ward & Gaidis, 1990). In fact, the problem had been explored as early as in 1965 by Gui Bonsiepe. He was among the first to suggest "the need for a modern system of rhetoric, updated by semiotic theory, as a tool for describing and analyzing the phenomena of advertising" (Bonsiepe, 1999b, 167). He first presented his paper on visual and verbal rhetoric to Arbeitsgruppe fur Grafik Wirtschaft (The Working Group for Graphic Design and Industry) in Stuttgart in March 1965. Bonsiepe selected useful figures from the daunting system of classical rhetoric and brought them up to date with semiotics which originally studies every language sign in two aspects: syntactic and semantic. This helped Bonsiepe to draft his first list of visual/verbal figures (see table 1), based on the analysis of a series of advertisements with the focus on defining "the possible interactions" (Bonsiepe, 1999b, 168) between the visuals and the headlines. He claimed, "the [visual and headline] signs no longer simply add up, but rather operate in cumulative reciprocal relations" and "in this first approach, the visual/verbal figures were simply noted. The work of classifying and systematizing them still remains to be done" (Bonsiepe, 1999b, 171). However, his call didn't arouse much interest in mainstream advertising countries like present day America, until the 1990s, when Bonsiepe's work was eventually rediscovered and expanded beyond advertising to cover graphic communication (de Cosio et al, 1998). …
TL;DR: In this article, the authors explored how UK banks are using emotional appeals in their advertisements and how this shapes consumers' attitudes towards their brands and found that there is a lacklustre attitude towards the brands; there was no sense of pride in associating with any bank, even with though there are possibilities of switching; and consumers feel there is no better offer elsewhere as all banks are the same.
Abstract: Purpose The present state of the financial services industry suggests the need for banks to appeal to consumers’ emotions with the aim of improving their reputation; this study aims to explore how UK banks are using emotional appeals in their advertisements and how this shapes consumers’ attitudes towards their brands. Design/methodology/approach Qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis in a two-stage study – Study 1 analysed the content of 1,274 UK bank advertisements to understand how the banks convey emotional appeals, whereas Study 2 elicited consumers’ perceptions of these advertising appeals and how they influenced their attitudes through semi-structured interview with 33 UK retail bank customers in London and Luton. Findings UK banks are using emotional appeals in their marketing communication strategies. The qualitative findings highlight the bi-dimensional nature of feelings towards the advertisements and how this relates to the brand. There is a lacklustre attitude towards the brands; there was no sense of pride in associating with any bank, even with though there are possibilities of switching; and consumers feel there is no better offer elsewhere as all banks are the same. Practical implications Bank brands should present distinct values about their services to the target audience, endeavour to build relationships with existing customers and reward loyalty. Importantly, financial brands need to engage in and highlight charitable activities and any corporate social responsibility as this can help to improve consumers’ attitudes as they often consider bank brands greedy and selfish. Originality/value Qualitative research methodology was adopted to better understand consumers’ attitudes towards UK retail bank brands.
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