Shock Advertising Essay

932 Words4 Pages
Shock advertising is often explicit, disturbing, controversial, and often will challenge beliefs in order to make the audience think about the advertisement and its purpose (Saladin). Using shock tactics in advertising may influence people’s decisions. Shock advertising is a “form of advertising that may not only offend but can also frighten as well, using scare tactics and elements of fear to sell a product or deliver a public service message, making a ‘high impact.’ In the advertising business, this combination of frightening, gory and/or offensive advertising material is known as ‘shockvertising’” (studymode). Shockvertising “may entail bold and provocative political messages that challenge the public’s conventional understanding of the social order” (Studymode). Using shock tactics introduces fear into the people, influencing their decisions. “A negative fallout of shock advertising is that continuous exposure to them desensitizes us to them, and they become blind spots” (Manral). There are many pros and cons of the shock advertising method making it a controversial method to advertisers in the United States and around the world. Reasons for most shock advertisements are meant to protect people. Shock advertisements inform people of what could happen to them if they do things like not wear their seatbelt, drink and drive or smoke. “Shock advertising is a type of advertising generally regarded as one that deliberately, rather than inadvertently, startles and offends its audience by violating norms for social values and personal ideals” (Studymode). There are shock advertisements in anti-tobacco advertisements showing people the effects tobacco has on the body. These advertisements for example present photos of human lungs of... ... middle of paper ... ...hem. It makes them think less of the brand if the advertisement is too risky leaving them to make the decision to not support it. Shock advertising challenges the beliefs and social norms of people in order to get people to put thought into their advertisement. In advertisements such as the lung cancer anti-smoking advertisements there is controversy on whether or not it is too gruesome. The controversy brings people to talk about the effects of smoking as well influencing the people to think more about whether or not they should smoke. Advertisements such as this are to help protect the health of people. Showing the effects that could happen if a driver were to drive drunk frightens people into thinking ahead. In showing these gruesome or shocking advertisements audiences might not believe them. There are many positive and negative effects of shock advertising.
Open Document