According to Vaid, “branding is the process by which a company or product name becomes synonymous with a set of values, aspirations, or states”. Our product is bottled water , a sector in which notable brands already exist, and hence, brand image may be detrimental to the products’ success.
Our product is bottled water , a sector in which notable brands already exist, and hence, brand image may be detrimental to the products’ success.
We have chosen to market our brand ‘Just Water’ toward those who have, or aspire to have, attributes of intelligence and success. Harrington states that advertising is a significant part of the branding process, and accordingly, an advertisement was created to communicate our brands’ image.
Our advertisement begins with a man on screen, wearing a suit, with a badge, which reads ‘manager’. He is surrounded in darkness
but as he drinks our bottled water his surroundings brighten.
Lively music starts playing, and people around the suited-man start cheering,
dancing, smiling and applauding him.
The man too starts dancing and smiling, seemingly due to the bottled water.
Suddenly, the music and exaggerated behavior stops.
The man then says, enlightened, “Its just water”.
But how will our text be interpreted? The process of deriving meaning from a text (known as reading) is automatic, and hence, textual analysis and semiotics (known as “the theory of signs”) can be employed to predict any readings that may arise. Harrington suggests that branding is concerned with attaching intended ‘connotative’ meanings to a product, and hence, an understanding of textual analysis and semiotics has not only helped to identify connotations, but has also allowed us to alter these connotations. Consequentially, we believe readers will derive two key meanings: The first is that other advertisements are deceptive, and the second - that intelligent and successful people do not succumb to deceptive advertisements.
The first reading – that other advertisements are deceptive – is dependant upon the readers’ knowledge of other texts, or as Bainbridge defines - intertextuality. This meaning is reliant on the readers’ knowledge of other advertisements that associate consumption of a product with feelings and actions that the product cannot actually provide. Our advertisement initially follows the structure of such advertisements, before highlighting that the product is ‘just water’ and hence, the behaivours are illogical.
This is an example of ‘ critical intertextuality’, which according to Gray, occurs when intertexts are used to attack other texts, subvert preferred meanings, and propose alternative meanings. Hence, through critical intertextuality, the reader should conclude that other advertisements are deceptive.
The second reading - that intelligent, successful people do not succumb to deceptive advertising - results from two signs. Bainbridge defines a ‘sign’ as an element of a text that produces meaning. Harrington further explains that a sign is the combination of a signifier, the physical form of a sign, and the signified - the concept created by the signifier.
The first signifier is the mans’ suit. Our desired signified was that the man is a successful, intelligent, businessman. This signified is reliant on the readers’ extratextual knowledge, or, as defined by Maclachlan “experiential and textually mediated knowledge of the world” . As a readers’ extratextual knowledge concerning a suit may be vast, the suit signifier results in several signifieds, for instance a suit may be worn by a groom at a wedding or by mourners at a funeral.
In order to convey the desired signified, we have included a second signifier - the mans’ name-badge which reads manager. This signifier results in the signified, that the man is a manager. This sign is a language based-sign, and as outlined by Schirato any meaning derived from language is a result of presupposed language systems. The sign, therefore, is only relevant to those with knowledge of the English language system.
Based on these two signifiers, the reader can derive that the man is a manager, and therefore, intelligent and successful. Consequentially, they should conclude that, all people with these traits do not succumb to deceptive advertising.
Our advertisement results in two likely denotations: first, that other advertisements are deceptive, and secondly, that intelligent, successful people do not succumb to deceptive advertisements. Provided this meaning is derived, our brand ‘just water’ will be associated with values of intelligence and success, and consequentially, those who have, or aspire to have these attributes, may favour ‘Just water’ over other brands.
Just Water Analysis
Just WaterIntroduction to Media and Communication:Assessment TwoAdvertising Story BoardCreated by:Alana Chataway – n8326941Pat Walker – n8284326
“Branding is the process by which a company or product name becomes synonymous with a set of values, aspirations or states” (Vaid, 2003, 12)
How will this advertisement be interpreted?Using theories of textual analysis and semiotics, webelieve the reader will derive two key denotations:1) Other advertisements are deceptive2) Intelligent and successful people do not succumbto deceptive advertisements
1) Other advertisements are deceptive• This reading is dependant upon other advertisements that associate product consumption with feelings and actions that the product cannot actually provide.• Our advertisement follows the same structure of these advertisements, before pointing out the fact that the product is ‘Just Water’ and hence, the behaviours are unrealistic.
• Specifically, it is an example of critical intertextuality, as our advertisement draws attention to the deceptiveness of other advertisements.• Critical Intertextuality occurs when intertexts are used to attack other texts, subvert preferred meanings, and propose alternative meanings (Gray, 2006, 37).
Based on this, the reader should conclude thatother advertisements and their associatedbrands are deceptive, making the reader moreinclined to purchase our brand over others.
2) Intelligent and successful people do not succumb to deceptive advertisements• This reading results from two key signs.• A sign is an element of a text that produces meaning (Bainbridge et al, 2011, 169).• A sign is comprised of a signifier, the physical form of a sign, and the signified, the concept created by the signifier (Harrington, 2012a).
Signifier 1: the suitThis signifier can result in a number of signifieds, reliant on the readers’ extratextual knowledge (i.e experiental and textually mediated knowledge of the world) for instance: He is a business He is at a funeral professionalHe is graduating university He is getting married (MacLachlan et al, 1994, 4)
Signifier 2: The mans’ name badge which reads ‘Manager’•All meaning derived from language is a result ofpresupposed language systems (Schirato et al, 1996,24)• Hence the reader must understand the Englishlanguage to arrive at the signified•The name badge is ambiguous, as it does notsuggest what kind of manager the man is.• If the reader assumes he is the manager of asmall store, they may not reachthe desired signified: that he isintelligent and successful.
The combination of the two signifiers,however, results in the signified that the manis a manager of a formal (rather thanstandard) company, and therefore, it isassumed he is intelligent and successful.
Consequentially, if the reader believes theyhave, or aspire to have attributes of successand intelligence, they may be prompted topurchase our brand rather than other brands.
• Two key denotations: 1) Other advertisements are deceptive 2) Intelligent and successful people do not succumb to deceptive advertisements• Provided this meaning is derived, our brand ‘just water’ will be associated with values of intelligence and success, whilst other brands will be tainted as deceptive.• As a result, those who have, or aspire to have these attributes, or those who recognise the fraud of other brands, may favour ‘Just water’.
References:Bainbridge, Jason; Goc, Nicola and Tynan, Liz. (2011). “Chapter 9: Media Texts” in Media & Journalism: new approaches to theory and practice, South Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 163-180. Accessed April 28, 2012. https://cmd.library.qut.edu.au/KCB101/KCB101_BK_343558.pdfGray, Jonathan. (2006). “Chapter 1: Intertextuality and the Study of Texts” in Watching with The Simpsons: television, parody, and intertextuality, London: Routledge, 19-40. Accessed April 26, 2012. https://cmd.library.qut.edu.au/KCB101/KCB101_BK_179008.pdfHarrington, Stephen. 2012a. “KCB101 Introduction to Media and Communication: Texts - Week 3”. YouTube video, posted March 12, 2012. Accessed April 18, 2012. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWdJuFp86N8&feature=player_embedded#!
Harrington, Stephen. 2012b. “KCB101 – Week 7”. Slidecast, posted April 18, 2012. Accessed April 22, 2012. http://www.slideshare.net/Stephen_Harrington/kcb101-week-7MacLachlan, Gale and Reid, Ian. (1994). “Framing Occurs, But There Is No Frame” in Framing and interpretation, Carlton, Vic: Melbourne University Press, 1-18. Accessed April 20, 2012. https://cmd.library.qut.edu.au/KCB101/KCB101_BK_234892.pdfSchirato, Tony and Yell, Susan. (1996). “Chapter 2: Signs and Meanings” in Communication and cultural literacy: an introduction, St. Leonards, NSW: Allen & Unwin, 22-42. Accessed April 20, 2012. https://cmd.library.qut.edu.au/KCB101/KCB101_BK_315661.pdfVaid, Helen. (2003). “Chapter 1: Secrets of Branding Revealed” in Branding, New York: Watson-Buptill Publications, 6-12. Accessed April 15, 2012. https://cmd.library.qut.edu.au/KCB101/KCB101_BK_234894.pdf