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November 21, 2010 / Tara Gremillion

Advertising a Social Cause

When I think of traditional advertising, I think of a message that’s out there saying here is a great product, its better than its competition product B and if you don’t go get it now, you may miss your chance. Then most likely product B will come out with a new campaign claiming how its better than its competition, referring to product A, and it will be a never ending battle between the two claiming that they are always better than the other.

However, the type of advertising that I love and affects me are those that stand for something bigger than itself and does more than just sell a product. Throughout the years, social issues and problems have been such a strong topic of debate and worry that they have driven so many people to change their lifestyle or do what they can to help. That is why advertising for a product has become very effective when it is linked to a social issue. Not only is the advertisement bringing into light and trying to affect social change, but they are pairing a product with this change and providing an avenue for everyday people to improve the world through purchasing this product.

Whether this product or service being sold actually relates to the social cause or improves upon the world at all, the association with the message leads people to believe that they are do good by purchasing it. That is why it is very strong for a company to find a social cause that relates most heavily with their product or one that they can associate strongly with. These products then become the way for you and I to feel that we are improving and helping the world. Instead of buying a product that has no association with positive change, we can buy a product that at least has the desire and motive to do good and may influence us to do so as well.

Then there are those advertisements that are advertising for a social cause. Most of these that I seem to run into are related to animal cruelty or global warming and the drastic images that are portrayed can be so vulgar and shocking that it makes you think twice about everyday life choices. These have done really well at making a statement and have been very effective with me and my peers by merely using a shock effect. Sometimes, all it takes is a vulgar, drastic image to impact social change and these advertisements are well on their way to making a huge difference.

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