Monday, March 8, 2010

Yes for Alternative Advertising

Alternative advertising is a technique that uniquely grabs a target audience’s attention. The uniqueness of alternative advertising can either come in the way it is presented or in the message that the ad conveys. Alternative advertising can be a great asset to businesses because of the way that this kind of advertising grabs the attention of the consumer.
Today people are bombarded by tons and tons of advertisements on a daily basis and it is up to businesses to create new ways of connecting with their consumers. Kenneth Cole’s 2008 alternative advertising campaign called “We all Walk in Different Shoes”, was a way to celebrate individuals with identities that are not considered mainstream or common.

This series of advertisements are in my opinion very compelling and for sure grabbed my attention because it was a very “out of the box” idea for a fashion campaign. Fashion ads usually dehumanize women and force images of ideals that are not real. Fashion advertisements typically come in the form of offensive or provocative, but Kenneth Cole opted for the alternative. In the essay "Constructed Bodies, Deconstructing Ads: Sexism in Advertising" it is stated that "Because traditional gender roles are so easily recognized by consumers, they figure conspicuously in the imagery of mass media. Gender images hit the heart of individual identity. What better place to choose than an arena of social life that can be communicated at a glance and that reaches into the core of individual identitiy?" Fashion advertisements have a lot to say about gender and power, just take a look at the Gucci and Dolce and Gabbana ads below.

I believe that a brand can sell their “product” or “name” in non traditional ways that are neither insulting nor hateful. Creativeness can go a long way, and it can also make a positive difference. An ad can be "cutting edge" without "cutting down" entire groups of people, especially women.

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