Copyright

Analyzing Advertisements: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Elizabeth Hance

Elizabeth has taught elementary and middle school special education, and has a master's degree in reading education.

Advertisements are one way that companies try to convince people to buy their products. In this lesson you will learn how to analyze ads to understand the strategies behind them and maybe even learn how to use those persuasive strategies yourself.

Introduction to Advertising

Have you ever watched a commercial and immediately thought, 'I have to have that'? Then you have been the victim of a successful advertisement!

Advertisements are pictures, commercials, flyers, and more, made by companies that are trying to persuade, or convince, people to buy a product or a service. You must be careful when watching, reading, or listening to different ads, because they may not always be the most honest representation of a product or a service.

Companies want your money and they don't necessarily have their customers' best interest at heart. One reason to analyze ads carefully is to be an educated consumer. However, you can also learn great ideas about the powers of persuasion and apply those to your own writing or art!

Pathos: Appealing to Emotion

If an ad makes you feel like this little girl, it is probably using the technique of pathos
child crying

Chances are you have seen a commercial showing animals in cages, with sad music in the background. The spokesperson begs you to help save these poor dogs and cats who are suffering. This type of advertisement is using pathos, meaning it is trying to appeal to your emotions and feelings. It could be trying to make you feel sympathy, pity, or anger. Political ads attacking candidates often use pathos to associate strong, negative feelings with an opponent.

Logos: Appealing to Logic

Do you want a smile that is 40% brighter? An ad using the technique of logos will often use numbers, statistics or historical references to make the product or service seem logical and reasonable. They will use what looks like straight facts to prove their point. Surveys or other scientific tools may also be mentioned. Logos advertisements may also use vague words that sound good but have very little meaning, like 'natural' or 'pure'.

Ethos: Appealing to Ethics

A doctor in a lab coat might be included in an ad using the technique of ethos
doctor_image

Have you ever seen a commercial bragging that 4 out of 5 dentists would recommend a certain type of toothbrush? Or recognized your favorite celebrity in a makeup or perfume advertisement? Then you have seen an ad that is using ethos, coming from the Greek word for character. They may also use a quote from an expert or a trustworthy source.

Some brands build their business on the ethos technique. For example, TOMS shoes uses the slogan 'One for One': for each pair of shoes a customer buys, another pair is donated to a child in need. In this way, TOMS shoes appeals to the character of the person choosing which shoes to buy.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account
Support