Can they convince you to buy that? If they use persuasive ads, they probably can. And they will. This concept is the beauty of persuasive advertising, as opposed to informative advertising.
They know how to choose the best pictures, colors, fonts, and, of course, how to write the best copy so as to make you buy their products. Curious to know how they do it? Let’s take a trip into their world and see.
What Are Persuasive Ads?
First of all, before giving an explanation of the concept itself, let’s tackle another issue. Who are ‘they,’ the ones we referred to in the introduction? ‘They’ typically means a small army of very talented people, composed of marketers, copywriters, and artists. They come together in one brilliant whirlpool of ideas which results in the most splendid persuasive ads you’ve ever seen.
If you want, ‘they’ are the ones who could sell ice to an Eskimo, via persuasive ads, of course.
As far as a somewhat generalized definition goes, persuasive advertising is one component of the advertising strategy as an overall. Its primary purpose is to entice, lure or even guilt people into buying particular products, participate in campaigns, start or stop doing certain activities.
As noted above, it is quite different than its sister, informative advertising. The latter tends to focus on providing some hard data to the customers. They typically relate to the various functions and characteristics those products have, which might benefit the customer.
When it comes to persuasive ads, marketers have a different starting point in constructing their campaigns. The assumption here is that the market in itself, aka the clients, already know and understand the product. For example, they don’t want to and don’t have to tell you the benefits of deodorant because you already know its basic functions. It helps you to stop sweating and not smell.
Instead, they know and focus on the idea that they need to convince you to buy a particular deodorant, not for its basic function, but for its desirability and added value. In other words, you need to buy it for how it makes you feel and for what makes the producing company stand out from all the others.
Why Are Persuasive Ads Working?
Since we’ve mentioned deodorants and we need an example to demonstrate this idea, Old Spice is the perfect case study here. They have managed to produce one of the classics when it comes to persuasive ads. ‘The Man Your Man Could Smell Like.’ This is what they’re trying to convince you of.
Why is this such a good persuasive ad? The reasons are manifold, so we’ll only give you the best.
- Although it’s a commercial for a man’s shower gel, it addresses women. The copy actually starts with the word ‘ladies.’
- It has a huge number of what they, in the business of marketing, refer to as call to actions. The man in the commercial says several times ‘look at your man’, ‘now look at me’, ‘look at him’, ‘now back to me.’ These call to actions have an incredible effect on the human psyche.
- The actor is undeniably good looking and, as we all know, sensual exploration sells.
- This commercial is one giant amalgamation of the things which all women presumably adore: yachts, diamonds, impossibly good looking men, pearls, tickets to shows, horseback riding, and, apparently, shower gel.
- It makes you believe that any ordinary person could feel just a little bit more special if they just use the product.
- The commercial manages to turn something as dull and mundane as shower gel into something you actually want to possess and feel attracted to.
- It increased their sales by 107 percent.
This is what persuasive ads can do.
3 Key Persuasive Advertising Techniques
As you might have already guessed, there are several effective techniques that marketers use when it comes to persuasive ads.
1. Focusing on the Benefits of the Product
On specific benefits of the product, that is to say. The idea here is to have people trust the fact that it will be difficult to locate the qualities of this product in any other place. Even though its competitors might have the same compounds, this is the only one which meets a specific need.
Take, for example, anti-dandruff shampoos. Even though there are other hair care products which might have the same effect on the scalp, they advertise this one as the only solution to the problem. In this way, that specific shampoo will attract a particular niche of customers, who need to resolve their scalp issues.
2. Helping You to be More Successful in Life
Another approach which persuasive ads tend to use is making the audience believe that, if they use a particular product, they will be a lot more successful in an area of their life.
- Old Spice is great as an example here as well. It’s not just a deodorant or a shower gel which you use to wash up every day. Instead, this product will make you feel like a man, man! You get to be successful and make your partner proud that he or she is with you.
- However, the best products at this game of persuasion are perfumes. The commercials don’t just advertise a certain smell. Sometimes, they don’t even mention it. Instead, they focus on how wearing that perfume will make you feel. Glamorous, if you use J’Adore Dior, classy if you go for Chanel No. 5, rich if you use Paco Rabanne, like a diva if you go for the Beyonce line, timeless if you use Cartier.
3. Making Sure Legal Aspects Are Settled
However, here’s an important note on this aspect. Even if they do try to convey these messages, persuasive ads never imply that using a certain product will magically make these things happen. For example, if you use a perfume by Paco Rabanne, you won’t win the lottery, so as to instantly have more money and feel rich.
What they are trying to say is that, if you do buy and wear it, there is a good chance the product will change your spirit and state of mind and, thusly, make you more confident and successful. In fact, many companies go as far as to add disclaimers to their ads. Sometimes they do it for fun, like in the case of L’Oreal and spokesman Hugh Laurie. A small print in the corner of the ads reads that you will not be getting Hugh Laurie if you purchase L’Oreal products. However, most of the times, they do it for legal reasons.
That’s a Wrap!
As a conclusion, let’s go back to our main question. Can they convince you to buy that?
If you’ve ever seen persuasive ads, they can.