In today’s world of advertising, the moving picture image has now replaced the still image as the most major and powerful form of advertising. TV companies from advertising alone generate huge revenues, with a 30-sec advert at prime time costing anything from 20,000 upwards. It is therefore very important that advertisers create the right impression of their product for the target audience. This essay will compare two advertisements shown on the 13th January 2002 from 3-4pm. It will compare the use of colour; sound camera angles and other effects used and evaluate their overall effect.
The two adverts that will be compared in this essay are an advertisement by the Royal Bank of Scotland for their “R-21” bank account and an advertisement by the Sandals Holiday company for their January discount bookings at their Caribbean resorts. The Royal Bank of Scotland’s advert is part of a series of adverts each based on the same theme, although this is the only advert concerning their “R-21” bank account. The Sandals holiday resort advert is a one off advertisement, designed to promote their January discount booking. The Royal Bank of Scotland advert lasts 40 seconds, whilst the Sandals advert lasts around 30 seconds.
The Royal Bank of Scotland advert is set in a suburban town and based around an everyday life situation. The advert also uses a Royal Bank of Scotland branch and a concert venue as part of their setting. However, the setting is not an important part of the advert, because much more emphasis is placed on the characters and on the product than on their surroundings, although it does help to contribute to the effect of an everyday life situation. The Sandals advert, however, is completely different, as it’s main presentational devices are its resorts and their surroundings.
The advert shows a Sandal resort, complete with golden beaches, tropical, exotic underwater scenery and crystal clear swimming pools. The scenery is a very important part of the advert and much more time is given to this than to the presentation of the character, service, cost or quality of the resort. The Royal Bank of Scotland advert combines a series of pale, pastel colours to introduce the audience to the advert. There is also a bright, early morning fresh feel to the adverts beginning, which, when combined with the pale colours creates a bright, fresh start to the advert.
As the advert progresses, the colours become darker and richer, as does the lighting, portraying an elapsing day, with the light gradually fading towards the end of the advert. These effects have been used to create the sense of a normal day and it’s light patterns, which contributes to the idea that it is based on an everyday life situation. The Sandals advert is very different. It uses warm, Caribbean aquamarines, yellows and greens to create a warm bright feel and also plays on people’s perceptions of a beautiful or exotic place.
The lighting is also reasonably bright, especially underwater and this creates a strong Caribbean atmosphere. These effects again contribute to the idea that the setting is the main focus of the advert and helps to focus the audience’s interest and persuade them to purchase their product. Because this advert was broadcast in January, when days are likely to be dark and cold, the warm colours they are portraying are a contrast and this would help to sell their product at this time of year, especially as January is a dull time and can be depressing after Christmas.
The music and voice over used in the Royal Bank of Scotland adverts are used to attract people in the 16-21 year old age group. The music is a regular, medium-paced tune, which increases in pace towards the end, culminating in a rock concert style finish. The voice over, a male, aged between 20-25, which is slightly above the target age group, has a soft-tone to his voice and enters the advert about 10 seconds after the start. Although there are no sound effects or ambient sounds, the music and voice over are very important to this particular advert.
The music is used to create an ordinary, relaxed feeling and also to associate the product with the age group. The voice over is used primarily to introduce the product and describe its benefits, but it is also somebody who the target audience may look up to. The Sandals advert uses a love song as its main sound backing, which softly fades in to introduce the product, but reaches a reasonably high volume and keeps in time with the movement of the pictures.
About halfway through the advert, the music fades out slowly to allow the voice over, a female, aged between 30-40, which is the age of the target audience, to describe the benefits of booking early with Sandals and to give a contact number for the audience. Although the voice over in this particular advert does not have as much significance as in the Royal Bank of Scotland advert, because of the words and logos used to reinforced her commentary, the music plays a large role in establishing the right mood at the beginning of the advert.
The voice over in the Sandals advert is part of the target audience, unlike the voice over in the Royal Bank of Scotland advert, who is somebody the target audience may look up to. The Royal Bank of Scotland advert uses little print or logos, except for some small print in the top right hand corner of some shots and a Royal Bank of Scotland logo in the finishing sequence of shots. The text and logos have little significance to the advert, since the voice over describes what is happening and the benefits of the product.
The Sandals advert, however, uses medium-sized bold print, which is easy to read and is used to emphasise the voice over’s commentary. The finishing sequence portrays a large Sandals logo and telephone number to persuade the audience to contact the company. The character and story line of the Royal Bank of Scotland advert mainly focuses on a young man and woman who are possibly engaged and also represent the age of the target audience. The advert mainly focuses on them and their interaction and portrays the “R-21” account as something that can be used not just as a bank account, but as a discount on concert tickets and CD’s.
This story line is important because it uses something that many people of that age can identify with and associates the Royal Bank of Scotland with buying CD’s and concert tickets. It also implies that handling money at that age can be quite tricky, although this advert suggests that the R-21 account can make things easier and leave students with more social time. The Sandals advert uses a wide variety of characters, although all of the same ages – 30-40 years old. They are all shown on a Sandals resort, relaxed and having fun.
The story line of the advert is focused on the setting and scenery of a Sandals resort and the activities that go on at a resort. The characters are not as important as the setting and colour of the advert, because there is not as much time in the advert given over to their movements. However, the characters do give a sense of normality to the advert, instead of it becoming over luxurious and focusing entirely on the scenery. The story line implies a luxury lifestyle, which can be found at a Sandals resort.