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In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
In many ways all media texts can be seen as highly conventional, employing conventional advertising techniques, and taking inspiration from the conventions of real media products. Partly, this was because I wanted to use dairy conventions to position DairyFriend as a dairy product in the eyes of the consumers, who would see these conventions and understand the product better.Main advertsmy choice of music was based purely on - Click to listen to the chosen soundtrack, “comeresearch into the conventional dairy back” by Rosie and Me.advert. I found that dairy adverts primarilyuse upbeat, feel good music. This istherefore something that helps theaudience distinguish them as dairy. Itherefore recognised the soundtrack asan important aspect of the advert, bothpositioning the product and setting theright mood and tone for the ad. I thinkthe track I used, “Come Back – Rosie andMe”, had the conventionalpositive, upbeat tone that I was lookingfor.
Beginning I also employed a very conventional narrative in the main adverts, described in my earlier research as “the exemplary story”, this is a conventional ad style that shows a strong narrative In which the product is placed in a situation where it is needed or necessary. It also has a middle distinctive linear narrative, of beginning, middle, end, which in itself is conventional. However, I do feel although I employed a conventional narrative, I didnt use it in a stereotypical, or overtly conventional way. Click to view Advert one and see the narrative end
However, the ad’s are not aesthetically conventional, containing no imagery of cows or real milk, which for a dairy advert is uncommon. This is a convention I chose to challenge, as I felt it was over used, and too obvious. I thought the mise en scene used connotes a dairy product, and that I didn’t need these overtly conventional images to establish the product. However, in my audience feedback, it became apparent that some of the audience were confused about what the product was, and this may be down to the lack of conventional imagery. If they were to see cows and pouring milk, they would immediately establish the brand as a dairy product. I’m therefore not convinced that challenging this convention has paid off. This is very conventional screenshot from a Muller advert, featuring both milk and the cows in the background, set in the country. I chose to not to feature Such conventional imagery, but still set it in a country background
Although I steered off overtly conventional imagery, I did adhere to some basic dairyadvert conventions. This includes the countryside setting and the milk van in the miseen scene, but also the slow paced editing and the connotations of natural, fresh and healthy. These were basic conventions I chose to incorporate into my ad’s. When researching into dairy ad’s I found the countryside setting, which held fresh and natural connotations, was key to all the products. Click to view advert 2, to see some of the dairy conventions
I decided this was animportant conventionto incorporate into my advert, as part ofrepositioning the UHTmilk was to show it as fresh and healthy, which it is currently not known I incorporated elements I also made a very as. Part of using this such as the brick basic, traditional looking countryside setting pattern, the chimney, the car. This was similar to included the tree’s white framed windows dairy ad’s I had seen and the river, but also and the picket fence to which use older using a traditional give off these looking, more traditional looking home and a conventional vehicles that hold these basic car. I found in connotations. If I were to conventional Dairy adverts, the create a more modern connotations. mise en scene always looking house, this had wouldn’t have the same traditional, homely effect. connotations.
SponsorshipsMy sponsorships were slightly Footage that wasunconventional, and didn’t fit neatly into the set removed – I triedof conventions I found when researching. They to put too much ofcontained a strong narrative, in keeping with a narrative intothe main adverts. I found in my them originally, andresearch, conventionally, they tend to have had to simplify andmore of a loose narrative, working on branding shorten them. Iand association with the programme, rather think I was tryingthan portraying a strong message. I deliberately to challenge thechose to challenge this convention, as I felt the convention too far..narrative was an important concept to the ideaof the ad campaign, and that the product andbrand didn’t stand alone without it. click to view: Sponsorship opening And Sponsorship closeI also didn’t incorporate the programme into mysponsorship, which is often common as itcreates an association between the productand programme for the viewer. This is mainlybecause I chose to sponsor a strand ofTV, daytime, and therefore kept the sponsorshipvery open to appeal to differentaudiences, rather than tailoring it to a specificprogramme.
I did however incorporate arguably the most important convention, and this was the strong branding. I noticed in my research that each sponsorship sequence portrays a strong brand image, through the use of colour, logo’s etc. This is due to the time restraints and the purpose of a sponsorship. Unlike main adverts, they don’t try to sell the audience a product, as much as try and remind them of it, and build up an association in their minds with the programme. A successful sponsorship sequence should help the viewers connect with the product, and this can be done easily through branding Iconic Iconic characters colours Company slogan name/logo I used branding in my sponsorship byfeaturing the logo on the van within thesponsorship, and by featuring the vanitself, which I believe would become iconic ofthe brand. I also positioned the DairyFriendlogo at the end, along with the ITV logo, tohelp the audience associate the two.
• I re edited my sponsorship sequences to fit tighter with the conventions I had seen. My first cut’s included too much information in the end title, which I found to be un necessary, and too much for the length of time, sponsorships conventionally give a short quick message, but do not provide much information about the product. This led me to change the end titles. EXAMPLE I also added the ITV logo to position alongside my branding, for the association purposes. Lastly, I swapped the closing sponsorship around, so the title came first, this was a convention I found in my research, but initially chose to ignore.
How effective is the combination of your main and ancillary texts?
I recognised the importance of creating synergy between all five media texts, so they could be viewed as a cohesive advertising campaign, however, would still be understandable and effective standing alone.The main way I created synergy was Old web pop up –through the continuity of the mise too dark anden scene throughout all five texts. I chosen footageused much of the same props, such doesn’t denote theas the lorry, which is clearly visible in brandeach text. This was something Irecognised as important, as my New pop up –original web pop up didnt feature Much more inthe same lorry, or similar aesthetics keeping with theand colours, and so looked far too rest of theseparate from the other texts. texts, featuring the iconic van The lorry becomes iconic of the brand within each text, and ties them all together.
I also made each text similar aesthetically, using only paper constructed elements, andkeeping each to a similar colour scheme. I think this was an important aspect toconsider, as I want the paper constructed elements to become symbolic of thebrand, much like the plastic figures in Cravendales ads have become symbolic of them Screenshots from each text, showing the similar colours and aesthetics My pop up, featuring stop motionThe paper construction elements, compared to a conventionalis something I pop up. I used the samecontinued throughout stop motion style toall texts, despite it being create synergyunconventional of web between thepop ups, which tend to pop up andbe digitally produced the rest of the texts.
I also re used props from the different texts, so they each featured some of the same props, and so were similar in mise en scene. This was obvious in the two ads and web pop up, where I used the same house and many of the same trees. However I also re used them more subtly. The same props – house, tree„s, van, milk bottles.The car from advert one reappears as opposite traffic in advert 2, thiswas a deliberate move to spark a memory in the audience, from adone.Similarly, in the closingsponsorship ad, I used the tentfrom advert 1, again for the sameeffect. I think this would helpviewers to recognise all texts aspart of the same campaign, andalso help them to remember backto the other texts.
I continued the soundtrack throughout four of the texts, with the two main adverts having exactly the same soundtrack, and the sponsorship sequence using an instrumental version. This means the tune follows on throughout all four, and would become a recognisable tune, symbolic of the brand. The viewer would associate thetune with the brand, and immediately recognise it as a DairyFriend ad, no matter which text they were watching. I also continued the font throughout each text, and in fact the logo. It is a stylised font, that would become part of the brand. It is seen at the end of each advert and in the sponsorship sequence, with the font colour mirroring the colours of the logo, in order to achieve a consistent brand imageI also used it in the web pop - Text and logoup, and feature the cow fromwithin the logo, either side of the featured in eachtext. This was an added choice to text, creating aincorporate part of the brand consistent brand identityidentity into the pop up, andwould once again make it easilyrecognisable as part of thebrand, and part of the samecampaign.
I asked in my audience feedback whether the audience thought all five texts worked together as a cohesive campaign, and the results were extremely positive, with the majority of viewers answering “yes”, and the rest answering “to some extent”, with no negatives responses. This suggests to me that the effort I have taken to make each text contain similarities and look like part of a campaign had paid off, as the audience received them as cohesive and united.In all, think all five texts support it each other, particularly the sponsorship sequencesand the main adverts, as they both take a slightly different stance on the same narrative.The main adverts feature a conventional linear narrative, which describe the product attributes, and then the sponsorship sequence builds on this, showing the extent of the products usability. Each text is understandable separately, but if viewed together, the sponsorship sequence and main ads support each other, and build up a strong picture of the brand.
What have you learned from your audience feedback?
I first posted my adverts on facebook, to see how my friends responded, but soon realisedthis was pointless, as it gave me vague directionless feedback that wasn’t of much value. I then created a questionnaire on Google Docs, including some closed questions for data analysis and some open questions to gain the audience’s opinions. I circulated this online to my target audience, males and females 20+, who were fairly middle class. I chose to base my questionnaire around my aims, what I set out to do with the ad’s, to see if the audience think these have been achieved. These were aims such as repositioning UHT milk as a premium product, and creating an advert that would be enjoyable and memorable. I wanted to see how far I had achieved these aims, and so how successful my campaign has been.
What is your view of the product, based on the ad„s?I felt this was the most important question, and so placed it first, as the main aim of the ad’s was to erode any negative stigma around UHT milk and to evoke a positive view of the product from the viewers. The results were very good, and all viewers agreed on a positive view of the product, with 100% answering 3 or over, which is towards the positive side of the scale. The majority of viewers answered 4 on the scale, which is not extremely positive, but comfortably. This assures me that the advert connoted the right values about the product, and that the audience picked up on these connotations. I paid specific attention to what I was connoting throughout all fivemedia texts, wanting the audience to understand the product as positive, fun, exciting
I then asked the audience to add any additional comments on their view of the product. Here I was looking to see if they had responded to the text the way I had intended, and had understood the connotations the way I had hoped. The results were very positive, with many people using the exact words I had hoped they might, such as convenient,nature friendly, healthy and fresh. This has confirmed to me that the advert’s connotations were received by the audience, as they had effectively perceived the product as I had hoped. I also feel with these positive comments and viewpoints on the product, I must have achieved my objective of effectively showing UHT milk in a positive light.“Very good product, convenient, good new option for going out places” – This was the mainnarrative of the ad campaign, and I am pleased it was well understood.“made you think of outdoors, fresh air and things that are healthy, which in turn makes youthink of the product as natural and healthy” – I included aspects of the mise en scenesuch as the tree’s and the river to evoke this reaction in viewers. It is conventional ofdairy advertising and I hoped it would help the viewers to understand the productas fresh and healthy.“The handcrafted props for the ad, help make the product seem wholesome and natural”– onceagain the product was received as natural and healthy, with this viewer commentingthat the paper stop motion itself has natural and healthy connotations. When I chosethis style of animation for my advert, I knew it would help me position the product ashome made and down to earth, and i’m glad it has been well received.
Did you find after watching the ads that the product, logo, slogan was memorable? This was a simple question to see if my audience thought the advertising campaign wassuccessful in terms of its branding. The results were pleasantly positive, with 42% and 45%answering 4 or 5 respectively, where 5 is the top of the scale in terms of how memorable it is. This suggests that the advert effectively communicated the necessary details of the brand. This was useful feedback as it confirms the Ad achieved the most important aim, which is to communicate a memorable brand.
in your opinion, did the ads effectively position DairyFriend as a premium "High end" product? Part of repositioning a UHT milk product was establishing it as a premiumproduct, therefore I set out to position DairyFriend as a premium “high end” product, that audiences would be willing to pay more for. I wanted to see if audiences felt I had successfully achieved this aim. The answers were very mixed, with the audience answering across the board. The majority of the audience answered “yes” or “to some extent”, indicating that most found interpreted it as a premium product to some degree. 35% of the audience agreed that it did establish the product as premium, however, 30%, almost a third of the audience, voted “not really”. This is a disappointing result, as such a large percentage didnt interpret the ad how I had hoped, and dont feel I achieved what I had aimed to do. I knew the question would generate a mixed response, as when I reflected on my work, I realised they didn’t fully address this aim, and this was something I perhaps overlooked.
What feelings/mood did you gain from the adverts?This was a simple question in order to evaluate whether my main adverts had connotedwhat I had hoped for the viewer. I was hoping, if the ad had successfully portrayed theproduct and given the right connotations, the answers would be words likehappy, relaxed, upbeat etc. This would be largely based on the soundtrack and the miseen scene in the ad and their connotations.The results were brilliant in this question, suggesting to me that the audience had receivedthe ad’s in the exact way I had wished, and that they understood the connotations I hadbuilt into the ad’s. The most used word’s were cheerful, uplifted, happy, peaceful and calm.Larger answers suggested, as I had hoped, that the mixture of the soft but upbeat musicand the aesthetics of the countryside were the reasons for these feelings. Scenes like this gave helped establish a cheerful but calm mood.
“The advert made mefeel calm and at peace This information was invaluable to me, as itwith myself, because of reassures me, along with question 1, that thethe use of the gentle messages of the advert were clearly received and understood by the audience. It was music and slow imperative to the success of the advert that moving, simple images” contained the right connotations, as much of the power of the ad is in the mood created by it. This in turn helps the audience to connect with it, and associate it with positive feelings. “The advert gave acalm, happy and relaxed feeling due to the soothing music”
Did you find the ads interesting and engaging? For example, If you were to see them on TV, would you want to watch the whole 30 seconds?This was simply to find out, if The results from this were alsoviewed on the TV, if they would positive, with the majority voting 4 or 5 onbe willing to watch it the whole the scale, indicating that they would beway through. I thought if the thoroughly engaged. No one voted lessanswers to this were mostly than 3, also indicating that nobody wasYes, then my advert’s must have disinterested in the ad, and that it wouldn’tbeen successful, as this is the prompt them to change channel. This wasmain aim for most adverts, to a useful piece of information to gain, as Iengage and interest the viewer now know my ad’s were received well byin the ad, and subsequently in the viewers, who enjoyed them andthe product. became fully engaged in them.
I lastly asked the audience to leave any additional comments they had on anything that wasparticularly successful, and equally anything they thought could be improved upon. Many peoplemade the comment that the purpose of the advert was sometimes unclear, and that at points, theproduct being advertised wasn’t necessarily clear either. I think I incorporated the purpose of theproduct into the narrative, but didn’t show it as obviously as often happens in adverts. As they areso short, ad’s usually provide a lot of information upfront and easily, rather than giving the audiencesomething to process. In hindsight, I could have put more information regarding the product intothe ad, through titles or a voiceover. Close up’s of the product could have been useful here,particularly in advert one, where most shots are quite long distance. A close up would have helpedthe audience to see the product better, and aid their understanding, however I struggled to get infocus close up’s with such a small set. One person made a particularly interesting comment: “the approach is reminiscent of Postman Pat TV programmes and may well appeal on a subliminal level to twenty or thirty somethings who grew up with PP.” I hadn’t thought of this previously, but my target audience would have grown up with stop motion childrens TV programmes, as these were popular back then. This would make the stop motion format familiar and enjoyable, and they may connect with it better because of this.
How did you use new media technologies in the planning and research, construction, and evaluation stages?
Planning and researchMy planning and research was a crucial part of the process, as itallowed me to fully understand the codes and conventions ofboth advertising and stop motion. I used YouTube to researchinto advertising, looking at past adverts and analysing them.I then used vimeo to look deeper into animation, as it provided awider range of video’s than YouTube. This also allowed me toanalyse them, and embed them into my blog, to comment onand compare against.I also used programmes such as flash andPhotoshop for my early experimentationinto rotoscoping and animation, as part ofmy research. This was imperative, as ithelped me choose a path for myadvert, after I decided I preferred to workwith stop motion. I was then able to mimicand develop existing texts I had foundonline, making a pastiche of their work. Thisallowed me to analyse it deeper, andunderstand the processes better.
ConstructionThe construction of my texts predominantly involved adobe flash CS 5.5 and premier proCS 4. I chose these versions of the programmes as they allowed the best creative control. Ipieced together the separate images in flash cs5.5, as I found this easier to edit andchange, and then exported them as QuickTime movies, to edit in premiere into onesequence. I also created the end titles in flash, so I could get effects such as the logofading in, and the typing effect on the slogan. I also had more control over theplacing, timings and aesthetics of the end titles in flash. For my web pop up, the use offlash was imperative, as it was the only program in which I could create a button with ahyperlink, to give a realistic, working web pop up. I also used YouTube again at this pointfor guidance and support on making a working button in flash.
Another way in which I used media Lastly, I used Photoshop in constructing technologies was with my blog. Rather my paper props, such as the DairyFriend than using it as a simple tool for van and the car. I originally tried to make recording my progress, I chose to them by hand with a ruler, but realised incorporate it into my brand, so it creating them digitally and printing them became part of the brand. This involved gave me more accurate measurements. using the same colours, taken from thebrand logo, for the background and fontcolours, and using the logo as a header. I think this was an effective use of myblog as a branding tool. I thought it was vital for every part of my work to have the same, strong branding, to create a solid brand image. I have continued this even here in my evaluation, using the brand logo, colours and font. . I used an Edirol voice recorder to record my voiceover, which gave me a quality sound, as I could position it close to the person speaking, and it was a quality sound recorder.
I used other technologies too in the However, this is a media technology that Iprocess of filming, such as an SLR struggled with. Because I was choosingcamera and an edirol. The SLR was to use manual focus, I should have ideallyimportant, as it gave me full control over refoucsed at each photo.the photo’s I took. This meant I could However, because the movements werecontrol the aperture and shutter speed, only slight, I changed the focus everymeaning I could make sure they were several photo’s. I thought this would bethe same in each photo, whereas a enough, but in reflecitng on my work, Istandard digital camera would have have realised some shot’s are actuallyadjusted accordingly, and given me quite out of focus. This is sometimes notphoto’s in a different light. I could also noticeable as they are on screen for ahave full control over the focus of the short period of time, however, in somephoto, choosing to use the manual scenes it is quite obvious, and I couldsetting, so I could focus on different have paid more attention to the focus ofaspects of the mise en scene, and leave my shots.some in soft focus. Here, the car should be perfectly in focus, with the tree’s in soft focus, but neither are right.
EvaluationI used technologies right through to the evaluation stage, uploading my videos to bothYouTube and vimeo. This is because they reach slightly different audiences and wouldallow me to gain different feedback. I then posted the links from these onto my facebookpage, to get some basic feedback from friends and family.
Lastly, I used GoogleDocs to conduct my audience feedback, this is because it was aneasy tool for creating a questionnaire, that was easy for people to fill in online. This meantI could email and facebook it to people I know, and prompt them to circulate online toanyone they knew, meaning I could easily and quickly gain a large amount of audiencefeedback.It was also a very convenient tool, placing my results into charts and graphs for me toanalyse, and presenting the results in a format that was easy for me to understand. Had Idone this manually, printing paper copies of a questionnaire, analysing the results wouldhave been time and consuming and difficult. It would also have been hard to circulate toan audience. I was also able to post a link to all five texts on the questionnaire, to watchbefore they answered, which would have been impossible in paper form.