Friday, March 16, 2018

Rhetoric in Advertising

It’s considered old-fashioned to mention what makes one product different to others.

Why anyone might want it or need it.

Why it might be worth paying extra for, why it lasts longer, why it’s easier to use.
Any appeal to reason is seen as dinosaur thinking.

From Campaign Live


All of the foregoing is rhetoric, of course. While it is posed as a series of statements it is in fact asking us to reflect on the truth of the statements and to tempt us to accept the opposite.

How might I apply this to our own products - greeting cards? What can I say about them that appeals to reason?

I would jump at it if I could - but can I?

They are the same or similar size to most others.
They are of good quality, like most others found in good outlets.
They are no easier to use than other cards. It is like comparing light switches: they are all easy to use - just flick the switch.
They are not stiffer and nor do they resist bending or creasing more than others of similar quality. They are printed in the UK on 300gsm Invercote card stock, which means they are not flimsy like some cheap imports. But that is typical for good quality cards.
There really is no need for a buyer to think in terms of longevity - except perhaps for those cards that are kept and stored in a shoebox as keepsakes - but that is not a difference that is worth promoting even if it existed.
The designs appeal to people. Other makers' cards appeal to people too.

In the world of creative design - how can one compare based on reason? That is not me being rhetorical: I am asking as a genuine question.

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