As important it is determining what to communicate in an advertisement, equally important is how it is communicated. The appeal and execution styles of advertisements talk about just that. The advertising appeal refers to the approach used to attract the attention of consumers and/or to influence their feelings toward the product, service, or cause. The creative execution style is the way a particular appeal is turned into an advertising message presented to the consumer.
When we talk about the appeal of an ad, it can be majorly classified into two types – Rational and emotional.
Informational/rational appeals focus on the consumer’s practical, functional, or utilitarian need for the product or service and emphasize features of a product or service and/or the beneﬁts or reasons for owning or using a particular brand. Rational-based appeals tend to be informative, and advertisers using them generally attempt to convince consumers that their product or service has a particular attribute(s) or provides a specific benefit that satisfies their needs. Informational appeal has other categories. Competitive advantage appeal is where an indirect comparison with a competitor is made. Favorable price appeal is where the price is the focal point of the communication. News appeal concentrates on some news or announcement about the product.
Emotional appeals relate to the customers’ social and/or psychological needs for purchasing a product or service. Many consumers’ motives for their purchase decisions are emotional, and their feelings about a brand can be more important than knowledge of its features or attributes. The Kelloggs’ “Respect yourself” campaign has been very effective in positioning Nutri-Grain as a healthy alternative for those who don’t take time to eat breakfast. Another example is where McDonald’s changed its advertising strategy recently and is now putting more emotion in its commercials to evoke a feel-good connection with consumers. The company’s senior vice president of marketing explained the change by stating,
Combining Rational and Emotional Appeals
In many advertising situations, the decision facing the creative specialist is not whether to choose an emotional or a rational appeal but, rather, determining how to combine the two approaches. Consumer purchase decisions are often made on the basis of both emotional and rational motives, and attention must be given to both elements in developing effective advertising.
There are other kinds of appeals as well. some brands follow the concept of reminder advertising. The main objective is to build the brand in such a way that the customer sees the brand name in front of them all the time. Other ads include teaser ads where when a new product is about to be introduced ads are designed in such a way that they build up the curiosity and interest of the consumers.
Once the appeal has been decided, the next major issue is that of Advertising Execution.
Creative execution is the way an advertising appeal is presented. While it is obviously important for an ad to have a meaningful appeal or message to communicate to the consumer, the manner in which the ad is executed is also important.
An advertising message can be presented or executed in numerous ways. Few of them are:
Straight Sell- One of the most basic types of creative executions is the straight sell or factual message. This type of ad relies on a straightforward presentation of information concerning the product or service. They are usually used in print ads.
Scientific evidence- Advertisers often cite technical information, results of scientiﬁc or laboratory studies, or endorsements by scientiﬁc bodies or agencies to support their advertising claims.
Demonstration- Demonstration advertising is designed to illustrate the key advantages of the product/service by showing it in actual use or in some staged situation. Demonstration executions can be very effective in convincing consumers of a product’s utility or quality and of the benefits of owning or using the brand.
Comparison- Brand comparisons can also be the basis for the advertising execution. The comparison execution approach is increasingly popular among advertisers, since it offers a direct way of communicating a brand’s particular advantage over its competitors or positioning a new or lesser known brand with industry leaders.
Slice of Life - A widely used advertising format, particularly for packaged-goods products, is the slice-of-life execution, which is generally based on a problem/solution approach. This type of ad portrays a problem or conflict that consumers might face in their daily lives and then shows how the advertiser’s product or service can resolve the problem.
The components of a print ad include headlines, body copy, illustrations, and layout. The figure below is an example of a cleverly designed eye catching headline:
The production of an actual commercial goes through three main stages:
In all, making creative ideas come to life and seeing the execution of the strategy in the marketplace is what the entire process is all about.