(the two parts of this exercise are sufficiently unrelated that I am splitting them into two posts)
Try the Who-What-How approach for yourself by analysing at least three contemporary photographic advertising images. Choose any images you like – they don’t have to have a human subject as long as they reveal something about the human condition.
- Who is the intended market for the product?
- What are they selling?
- How are they selling it to the customer?
BMW 7 Series
- Extremely high income: the 1% – those who don’t drive a car but are chauffeur-driven around (and: those who aspire to this)
- Status, superiority, validation (ego-stroking)
- Luxury, relaxation (you’re a stressed exec!)
- Reassurance (award winning)
- Appellation (use of ‘you’ in headline) – you are ‘invited’ into the open car door
- Association: nice expensive car, nice expensive house
- Social differentiation (“you’re a BMW driver”)
- Women (more likely to be decision-makers)
- Homemakers with more disposable income than average – less price conscious (price not mentioned, though the summer sale is)
- A lifestyle – stylish, tasteful, classic (e.g. stripped floorboards, retro phone)
- Appellation (use of ‘your’ in headline)
- Social differentiation (pseudo-individualism)
- Signifiers: retro phone = classic; photobook = arty etc
- Middle class females, higher than average income
- Interested in self-improvement (health and fitness) but not necessarily cooking
- A ‘better version of yourself’
- Idealised – healthy, fit, organised, tidy etc
- Identification / mis-recognition (“that could be me”)
- Aspiration, but a more achievable kind than many ads: a tidy, airy, stylish kitchen, a nice view
- Signifiers: staircase outside window resembles an upwards graph (= self-improvement); lots of houseplants = natural, healthy; yoga = balanced
- Association: yoga is healthy, therefore this food is healthy
- Practical: product packaging is more prominent than finished meal – and it even tells you where to look for it in the supermarket