Comparing advertisements

In this essay I will be comparing advertisements for Oxfam and CCF. The Oxfam advert is about weapons and I will be comparing it to the advert from Christian Children’s fund (CCF) advert about the people in the third world countries in poverty. Both of the adverts are very persuasive in many ways. The essay will focus on the language, purpose, layout and images of both adverts. I will be discussing the techniques used in the advertisements, which makes the reader want to read on. I will be writing about what effect the advert has on the reader.

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The Oxfam advert is about how people are being injured, if not dying from the use of weapons being in the wrong hands. The advert basically wants us to agree that the laws are not strong enough concerning weapons because as British citizens we can do something about this law. Where as the CCF advert is more brusque, it is asking for the reader to sponsor a child in a third world country, the advert says that the child’s parents are too emaciated to give a good life to their child.

The target audience for the Oxfam advert is mainly for people over the age of 18 and have the right to vote, as they can change the law and younger peoples voices are not heard or counted for in today’s society as much as adults. In the CCF advert, money is a big issue. The advert is directed at people, who are over the age of 16 and working, as they can afford to give money monthly to a charity. Younger children, who receive pocket money, would not want to waste it by giving it to a charity. The gender target for both adverts does not matter, as there are a mixture of genders and races implicated in the CCF and Oxfam advert. The target audiences for both advertisements are people who read broad sheet newspapers, because this is the medium that the advertisement most likely came from. These people are stereotypically highly literate, financially secure and socially responsible.

In both advertisements the pictures of the children are the main points of convergence. They are quite big. In the CCF advert the image is well positioned; it is the centre of the page. It stands out because the girl in the image has very big eyes that look as if she had been crying; it appears as they had water in them. She looks disconsolate. This makes the reader feel sympathetic towards the girl. The Oxfam advert has been laid out in a more austere way. It has the picture on the left of the page and the text is on the right. The image takes up half of the advertisements. The heading and the caption in this advertisement have been coalesced. The text is very short in comparison to the CCF advert. The logo is noticeable and in the bottom right-hand corner of the advert.

The images in both adverts are very effective. The converge for the Oxfam advert in the image is the girl’s eye and also all her bandages. Her clothes look worn out and old. The girl’s hair is a mess, untidy and unsanitary, that shows that these people can not afford to have a decent wash. Her facial expressions show she is upset, inconsolable and she looks innocent. By putting a picture of a child it shows someone who can not have done wrong. You do not customarily relate transgression to a young child. The bandages show she has been injured and physically abused. The picture says a lot even without words, from the picture we can get a vague idea about where she lives, most presumably a shelter or a hut in a third world country, such as Vietnam or Africa. The image alone says she’s trying to show how not to end up how she did, and we can preclude that from happening to somebody else.

In the CCF advert again the child looks very innocent and despairing. The girl looks as though she had been crying. The child is young. You feel condolence towards the girl. She is looking directly at the camera; this is because she wants us to imagine what it would be like to be in her shoes. Someone, who’s parents can not afford to feed them properly parents who can not give her a life, which every human deserves. Even though the Oxfam advert image says a lot more, I personally think the CCF advert image is a lot more effective. The girl’s eyes seem full of sorrow, and the girl in the Oxfam advertisements is older. We feel more emotional towards the younger girl.

The adverts both have very clever headlines. The Oxfam advert is very resourceful it uses two puns. It stands out because it’s big and bold. The line ‘look me in the eye,’ is a pun. It’s a phrase often used but people say ‘look me in the eyes’, the girl in the picture only has one eye we can look into, so we can not use the plural. When you first read the headline you think it’s about something very different. You read ‘arms control,’ and think its about a girl that has been beaten up, physically abuse, but by the word arms, it is meant weapons. There is the use of assonance in the words, ‘tough enough.’ That makes it a memorable feature of the headline.