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Advertising Analysis Case Study: “Get a Mac” TV ads by Apple

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Ivan Mickovski

on 7 January 2011

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Transcript of Advertising Analysis Case Study: “Get a Mac” TV ads by Apple

Advertising Analysis "Get a Mac" TV ads by Apple TEMPLATE They portray personifications of a Mac and a PC
Mac is a friendly, relaxed and cool guy
PC is an up-tight, insecure and befuddled nerd
The background is white, clean and minimal
They start with “Hello, I’m a Mac. And I’m a PC”
Comedic scenarios unfold that carefully show Mac's superiority over PC
They end with a shot of Apple's logo Had been running from 2006 to 2010 Contains 66 ads Won 3 advertising awards A FEW FACTS "PCs cause frustration and problems because they are difficult to use, unstable and vulnerable to malware. They are only good for boring and nerdy 'work stuff', like making pie charts and spreadsheets." CENTRAL MESSAGE "Macs are easy to use, stable, safe and competent. They are much better than PCs in doing cool 'life stuff', like making photo albums, home videos and blogging, but they can do serious work just as well as PCs." "Get a Mac and all your computer problems will go away!" THE PRODUCT A FEW FACTS THE MARKET THE CULTURE Computers (Macs and PCs) are high-involvement products and advertising them requires persuasion techniques suited to high-involvement conditions. Apple is the underdog in the PC market with only 3.6% market share in 2006. Some persuasion techniques work better for low-share brands. The long-lasting rivalry between Apple and Microsoft has created a consumer culture of strong supporters of either PCs or Macs. The GAM ads are a product of this. TARGET AUDIENCE The average home PC user - the ‘swing’ consumer, who is not attached to either Macs or PCs. These would be consumers who are not particularly technologically savvy, and do not have to consider giving up hard-won, platform specific know-how to switch platforms. The ads also target younger consumers in their 20's and 30's. APPLIED THEORIES AND PERSUASION TACTICS Association principle Functional theory ELM and high involvement Comparative Ads Backlash Factual information in the form of comparative advantages is presented in every GAM ad.
Most GAM ads focus only on one agrument in order to avoid overwhelming the audience with information.
The combined effect of the whole campaign is that we get to find out about most of Macs’ advantages.

Example argument: Macs are better than PCs because they get fewer viruses. The GAM ads target the utalitarian, social-adjustive and social identity attitude functions. Utalitarian: “Macs do X better than PCs”. Specific focus is put on tasks that are important to the target group.
Social-adjustive: "Get a Mac if you want to fit in with the cool crowd!" Done symbolically through the apperance and behavior of the "Mac" and "PC" characters.
Social identity: “Get a Mac if you want everybody to know you’re cool” Uses the same symbolism as above. Classical conditioning: Repeating the association until the value of the signifier is transfered to the value of the signified.
Semiotics: Apple's logo is given meaning through association with the values promoted in the GAM ads.
Accessibility theory : Repetition of the GAM ads makes it easier for audiences to "call up" their associations from memory in the moment of decision-making. The GAM ads associate the characteristics of the "Mac" and "PC" characters with the products being compared. We are much more easily swayed by negative than positive information. Better at enhancing brand name recall, promote better recall of message arguments, considered somewhat less believable than non-comparative ads, generate more favorable attitudes towards the sponsoring brand, generate stronger intensions to purchase the sponsoring brand, generate more purchases, work better for brands with low-market share. Conclusions about comparative ads: Because they inherently contain negative messages towards a brand or product, there is always a risk that audiences will react negatively to comparative ads. Some advertising professionals see this as a good thing as the backlash and parodies served to keep the GAM campaign present in the eye of the public. EXAMPLE ADS Author: Ivan Mickovski
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