A Rhetorical Analysis Of Alcohol Advertising

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Alcohol advertisements are abundant in society today, especially with the rising influence of the media. Today, in contemporary society, teenagers are exposed to alcohol marketing at unprecedented levels and from multiple sources. Not only are marketers using television and radio, but they are also now aggressively using digital technologies such as cellphones and social networks like Facebook and twitter. Marketing efforts have become multidimensional, integrating both online and offline promotions such as event sponsorship and the distribution of branded merchandise. However, is marketing alcohol a profitable, necessary advertising technique and/or detrimental to society, as it encourages underage drinking? By analyzing the rhetorical appeals…show more content…
10). Through the use of pathos, these advertisements associate the consumption of alcohol with attributes specifically appealing to youth, “such as friendship, prestige, sex appeal and fun” (AAFP, 2014: para. 10). In Murphy’s (2015) study of marketing campaigns involving alcohol, he explains that the use of rhetoric, by the inclusion of celebrities in these advertising endorsements, is highly effective. Murphy begins his argument by clarifying what celebrity endorsers are by defining them as, “any individual who uses his or her public recognition on behalf of consumer goods by appearing in an advertisement” (Murphy, 2015: 138). Following this, he says that celebrities not only deliver messages in the campaigns, but they also persuade consumers to purchase the sponsored brand over others. Overall, the use of celebrities in advertisements really incorporates the rhetorical appeals of ethos and pathos. When a celebrity appears in an alcohol commercial, they are drinking the alcohol and/or telling the audience that the product is good. These celebrities are trustworthy people, and we tend to look less to the message in these advertisements than to the person who’s delivery them. Thus, the audience wants to buy the product because credibility is established, through ethos, as the…show more content…
In response to this, government agencies as well as supportive organizations have made efforts to prove a statistically significant relationship between the advertisements and drinking. One such example of research done on this correlation took place in the 1970s in Sweden. When alcohol advertisements were banned, there was a 20% decrease in alcohol consumption (AAFP, 2014: para. 19). Moreover, another study proving the association between alcohol advertisements and youth consumption of alcohol was done in 2009. At this time, the United Kingdom House of Commons Health Select Committee inquired about alcohol industries and marketing. In doing research, the Committee concluded that adolescents are a key target group for alcohol advertisers, noting that “market research data on 15 and 16 year olds is used to guide campaign development and deployment, and there is a clear acknowledgment that particular products appeal to children” (Boseley, 2010: 1). In the research of companies’ internal documents, the Committee noted several references to the need to recruit new drinkers and to establish loyalty to their brands. Moreover, it showed that these youths are targeted through several media segments. These advertising companies use marketing techniques such as “seeding” the alcohol products on private social media pages and

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