Considering the verbal and non-verbal modes in the analysis and evaluation of appealing to the audience’s fear in anti meth-commercials.

AIM presentation 4/10/’13

Title: “Considering the verbal and non-verbal modes in the analysis and evaluation of appealing to the audience’s fear in anti-meth commercials.”

Elodie Glerum (elodie.glerum@hispeed.ch)

Abstract In anti-drug campaigns, advertisers frequently appeal to the audience’s fear as a strategic attempt to persuade consumers to adopt a standpoint. In many commercials, these appeals are conveyed by verbal, but also non-verbal means. In commercials against methamphetamine, a highly addictive designer drug, advertisers systematically use arguments from consequence in order to expose the negative effects of an addiction and to persuade an audience not to take the drug. By pointing at these negative outcomes, either through verbal or non-verbal means, advertisers more particularly try to activate frightening representations in the viewer’s mind. Because teenagers represent an important group of methamphetamine users, advertisers adapt their commercial message to this specific audience by using a shocking content and an aesthetic borrowed from the horror fiction. Overall, it comes out that both verbal and non-verbal modes must be examined while analysing and evaluating appeal to fear in anti-drug campaigns with shock content.

 

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