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Von Quintillano

on 26 September 2014

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What do these signs tell you?
Coffee break?
Would you invest money?
A complete STOP?
Do you need a ride home?
an object, quality or event whose presence or occurence indicates probable presence or occurence of something else
- study of signs
- a discipline of assigning additional meaning or subtexts to sign beyond the meaning beyond the sign itself .
plays a major role in catching the attention of intended target market such as men, women, adults or teens. The placement of certain images, text, colors and other signs is the key part of the overall success of the ads.
Red is mostly used color in branding as red is the most recognized by the eye on the color wheel.
How does the mind analyze signs?
We are a specie driven by desire to make meaning
we process signs in the forms of
Saussure Approach:
- signs are purely psychological
-sign refers to what is not
-signs only make sense in a formal abstract system. A one word language is an impossibility
Coffee is the literal meaning of the sign and is called,
open mic night
Louis Vuitton bag
Shopping frenzy
new artists
physical resemblance between signifier and signified
arbitrary relations between signifier and signified; sign gains meaning through social conventions
signifier has a direct correlation in space and time to the signified
Pierce Approach:
Pierce Triadic Semiotic System
lets take a look at this LED sign in timesquare
lets examine common signs we see around us
-describes the interaction that occurs between the subjective user and their culture
-is a commonly understood cultural or emotional association that some words or phrase carries
- it takes the shape of the signified. Commonly used to convey a message due to its minimalist but direct approach.
The red ribbon is a worldwide symbol for HIV/AIDS. Symbols are used to promote sensitive issues in a subtle manner yet socially understood by the audience.
-blood signifies pain or suffering. Index is being used to evoke emotions or experience on the audience.
Advertisers depend on audience to use their mental processors to draw connotation by the brand and the experience by way of semiotics.
It is through an association called "
" where audience associate products or services with pleasing user experience making the product and experience virtually synonymous.

Let's have Kamiseta Brand as an example
Kamiseta installed store deodorizer inside their stores. Whenever customers shop, they are being familiarized with the scent and relate it to the brand
olfactory user experience
(Super-familiarity)=brand recognition
here's an ad from guess
let's take a closer look at the signs

tasseled earrings
ocean waves
tousled blonde hair/
tanned skin
bright sun
these signs:

-bright sun
-tousled blonde hair
-ocean waves
-tasseled earrings
-tanned skin

are collection of related association that
suggests she's a beach babe
A collection of signs which invoke each other because they are culturally related is called a paradigm
let's check out other signs on the ad
studded cuff
denim vest
hands on upright direction
curved pose
what's the narrative?
A pretty lady with tousled hair and tanned skin went to the beach alone, clad in a sexy bikini, confidently posing her hips slightly curved with hands in upright position, covered with a denim vest and accentuated with tasseled earrings and studded hand cuff. She's a rebel defying norm by wearing unconventional coveralls (denim vest) on the beach.
guess ladies are not just pretty faces, they are sexy, tough and independent modern women.
its also a form of
relations, a narrative defined as causally connected series of events.
guess is also associating its brand to the beauty myth
Cultural Myth - dominant ideologies of
our time
- it deconstructs the ways in which codes operate within particular texts or genres, with the goal of revealing certain values. attitudes, and beliefs are supported whilst others are suppressed.

can you decode p.diddy?
The image is an example of presentational code; limited to face to face communication and concerns communication through orientation, gestures, movement, eye movement, proximity, facial expressions and other of body language
the right hand in upright position suggests he is proud yet modest with his head facing downward
- maps of meanings
-system of ideas that people use to
interpret their own or other's behavior
-all codes have paradigmatic and syntagmatic dimensions
-all codes convey meaning
-codes depend upon agreement between users.

Another form of code is called representational; codes used to create texts. Something that stands for something else independent of the encoder.
this is an campaign from UCB titled "unhate"
What ideology does it represent?
Signifier - the concept it represents
(The form which the sign takes)
Though the goal of this ad is to promote peace among groups, it received negative reactions and criticisms around the globe, specifically from the parties involved. This is an example of ideology under "false consciousness" as it represents false picture of the two opposing religious groups.
What an ad means depends on how it operates, how signs and its ideological effects are organized internally within a text and externally in relation to its production, circulation and consumption and in relation to technical, economical, legal, and social relations.
for the advertising field, semiotics weaves the ideas to great concepts by incorporating subtle clues to attract their target market. any symbol stands for something and is meaningful by association. ads project feelings, emotions, mood and experience associated with every visual imagery attached.

for the audience, semiotics helps decode and understand hidden clues on ads that would persuade a buyer to purchase a product.


Discussion points:
1. What semiotic consideration should advertisers use to create a good advertising campaign?

2. Whats your stand on advertising campaigns deemed to be malicious and offensive if the aggrieved party is not the targeted market?
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