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Jib Fowles 15 Appeals Essay Summary Statements

Fowles has written other books on the effects of media on society such as “Advertising and Popular Culture” published in 1996. He is also a researcher, publisher, and professor in media. “Advertising’s” has also appeared in “Mass Advertising as Social Forecast” by Jib Fowles. From the title, you can expect that this essay will explore the reasoning behind advertisements and why people like them. It is an appropriate title because Fowles breaks down each “appeal” he lists and explains why it is used to draw in audiences.

This essay’s focus is about the techniques that advertisers use to appeal to audiences. Fowles got his ideas about the appeals from studying advertisements and using interviews by Henry A. Murray, a Harvard professor. Fowles separates the appeals into 15 parts and gives details on how each is used and how often. His purpose it to inform advertising, marketing and media students, and also other educators on how to us ads to appeal to the public. Also, he wanted to inform the general public on how they are being influenced. The target audience is mainly students who are studying media.

Fowles does a good and effective job of getting his point across. His goal is to educate students and he does that well. His information is organized well, which makes the essay easy to understand. He uses a lot of details and examples to back up his points. Finally, Fowles ends his analysis by explaining to the reader how to look at ads for the things he wrote about. “Advertising’s Fifteen Basic Appeals” is a good resource for any student interested in learning more about the media.

When looking at “Advertising’s” by Jib Fowles, the reader can easily see what each of his appeals is. He gives each appeal in a number list and describes each appeal in that list. This way of presenting information makes it very easy for the reader. Someone can simply pick and choose what parts of advertising appeals he or she would like to explore and find it right away. The good organization is a positive aspect of the writing as well as how thorough Fowles is.

“Advertising’s” can be seen as a good resource because it is very detailed. With each appeal there is a description with examples or background provided. One appeal is the need for autonomy. If the reader does not know what this appeal is just by looking at the title, he or she will soon know by reading Fowle’s description. Fowles gives examples of companies that use this need for autonomy. One slogan he quotes is from Visa, “you can have it the way you want it,” they say. Fowles explains why Visa would use this as an effective marketing tool.

“The focus here is upon the independence and integrity of the individual; this need is the antithesis for guidance…” (Fowles 562). Now the reader, who may not even know what autonomy is, has an understanding of the appeal and an example to clarify. After the explanation of the appeal comes the lesson on how to analyze advertisements.

This part is important because if people know all of these things about ads but don’t know how to apply them to what they see everyday, then “Advertising’s” has missed the point.  “When analyzing ads yourself for their emotional appeals, it takes a bit of practice to learn to ignore the product information… sort out from all the non-product aspects of an ad the chief element which is the most striking,” (Fowles 566).

The viewer must not only learn to sort the information, but also he says to look at the angle the ad is viewed in and the audience it is targeted to. Again, good examples are provided to explain this. He writes about the Green Giant who is looking down on you and appealing to your need for guidance, and about the difference between the message of the same ad if it’s in “Penthouse (need for sex)…and Cosmopolitan (need for attention),”(Fowles 566).

There are some who may think that despite Fowles organization, detailed explanation, and analysis, that the essay is too old to be useful to a modern audience. When describing the need for sex, appeal number one, Fowles uses some example that could be seen as dated. First he says that sex is only used in two percent of ads because it can be too much for the viewer.

Sex is definitely something seen a lot more in today’s ads. He then provides examples using companies and products that aren’t around anymore. The description of the “lithe blouse-less female astride a similarly clad male” (Fowles 555), in the Jordache jeans commercial could paint a picture for some in their forties. Today’s students might not get anything from that visual. Even though the examples are dated, the information remains true. You may find more sex in different ads these days but advertisers are still marketing to that need and doing it in the same ways.

Jib Fowles was an educator with a strong background and understanding of the media. For this reason his goal with this essay was mainly to appeal to students. He does that well by staying organized and giving a lot of details. He puts his theory into use by informing the reader on who to analyze ads. Though some of Fowles examples are old and people may think they are outdated, his ideas are still good for today’s audience. All of this makes “Advertising’s Fifteen Basic Appeals” a good place for students to turn to when wanting to learn more about advertisements.

Work Cited
Fowles, Jib. “Advertising’s Fifteen Basic Appeals”. Writing and Reading Across the Curriculum Ed. Lavrence Behrens and Lenard J. Rosen. Boston: Pearson, 2013 551-68. Print.

Magazine Ad analysis

Essay add: 29-09-2015, 19:36   /   Views: 907

English 101
Magazine Ads Analysis
September 2007

Magazine advertisements contain various symbolic messages in an attempt to

reach their target audience. In this analysis, I will analyze two different full page ads in

US News and World Report. I will be using Jib Fowles’ Advertising’s Fifteen Basic

Appeals to analyze symbolic construction and basic emotional appeals. Fowles states

the goal of advertisers is to tug at our psychological shirtsleeves. Advertisers bombard

us with pleasing images to draw us in and get us to pay attention to their ads. Let’s

take a deeper look at these two ads and what they are conveying to consumers.

The first advertisement is an ad for Philips Brand Computed Tomography

scanner, or CT scanner for short. The ad depicts a young boy standing on the beach

smiling and holding an umbrella to shade him from the sun. This adorable young boy

has been specially selected to stimulate our desires.

US News and World Report is a general interest magazine appealing to a broad

spectrum of audiences. The ads primary symbol is the young boy. This image calls upon

our need to nurture. The umbrella shading the boy from the sun furthers this need. When

we look further and read the text we find out that Philips has improved their CT scanner

and lowered the dose of radiation when this machine is used. Appealing again to our

need to nurture and protect. In the back ground we have the ocean. Though the least

effective symbol it appeals to our need to escape.

The need to nurture is often aimed at women. More nurturing by nature it is an

effective technique when used properly. Had this ad been seen in a magazine such as

Contemporary Diagnostic Radiology, I’d wager the ad would have been geared more

towards medical professionals, siting the technical aspects and benefits of the product.

Changing the appeal to the need to achieve. Using only the X-ray symbol and text,

the ad would still convey its’ meaning to the audience. This ad would still be effective to

the target audience. Without knowing what a CT scanner is or why we would need to use

one, Philips tells us they care for us and are working to better their products for us the

consumers. In turn, this may cause people to look at all Philips products in a positive

light and possibly purchase them.

The second advertisement is for a Citibank American Airlines AAdvantage

program. The ad shows a woman relaxing in a canoe on a peaceful lake near snow

covered mountains. The ad has two of Fowles’s fifteen basic appeals. These are

autonomy and the need to escape. The ad appeals to our sense of pride and self worth.

They (Citibank) want us to believe that by using their card for everyday purchases will

lead to our ability to take time off and enjoy ourselves.

The image of the woman relaxing and enjoying a beautiful view is focusing on

her independence. The independence Citibank wants us to believe we have using their

card. She is shown alone so you get the sense she doesn’t need anyone or anything,

except her Citibank card, to get what she needs. There is a strong need for autonomy in

women and this ad meets it. The advertisers chose not to use the negative approach, guilt

or neglecting yourself. This would have cast a bad light on their card for some viewers.

When you read the question you start to think about stopping on your way to

work for a latte. There is nothing visual to suggest this but our minds start to form a

familiar narrative by seeing the ad. One that is logical and that we can accept showing

steps taken by the woman to bring her to this lake in this boat. She obtained her card,

used her card, earned rewards and used her rewards. The advertisers are appealing to our

need to escape. This need often comes with a sense of pleasure and advertisers use it

often. We hope to leave behind the daily drudgeries of our lives and relax or live out an


This very ad would continue to work well in other more specialized magazines.

Travel magazines, for instance, in an effort to inform their readers of destinations and

attractions, would be furthered by Citibank’s ad on how they could obtain these trips.

This ad would be less effective in a magazine such as GQ. Published with a male

demographic in mind, the female image would be changed to a male image to ensure

maximum effectiveness.

Both of these advertisements appeal to the need for aesthetic sensations.

Fowles states “Some few ads have their emotional appeal in the text, but for the

greater number by far the appeal is contained in the artwork.” Advertisers

use this appeal in almost every ad. Advertisers have learned it is easier to communicate

with perspective buyers using visually pleasing images than with text. These

ads have two forms of content; consumer appeals and information. These ads would be

hard to improve upon.

Advertisers have learned to use beautiful pictures and well laid out ads to

spark an interest from consumers. Witty slogans and carefully thought out camera

angles step up their ads. They have been sneaky and underhanded in efforts to bring

us a message they want to convey. Advertisers have used the fifteen basic appeals to

reach us by any means necessary, sometimes using several appeals in one ad. Their

campaigns have been and will continue to be successful. A. C. Neilsen Company states

that seventy-five percent of new products expire each year yet advertisers spend fifty

billion dollars a year in ad costs. Advertising sells.

Article name: Magazine Ad analysis essay, research paper, dissertation

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