Date of Award

8-2012

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science

Major

Communication and Information

Major Professor

Roxanne Hovland

Committee Members

Eric Haley, Jin Seong Park

Abstract

Advertisers use different advertising strategies depending on their target audiences in order to maximize advertising effects. In general, the most frequently used target segmentation is gender because it meets requirements for successful advertising implementation. Thus, the focus of this study is to find whether advertisements contain ingredients that are likely to have special appeal for target audiences.

The study analyzed message strategy and creative strategy of alcohol advertising in magazines. For the analysis, from January 2004 to December 2011, a total number of 474 alcohol advertisements were examined from six magazines divided by three categories: men (Playboy and Sports Illustrated), women (Southern Living and Vogue), and gender-neutral (Gourmet and Gentlemen's Quarterly).

The results of this study point out that alcohol advertising appeals to gender differences through different creative strategies rather than through message strategies. However, regardless of gender, the most commonly used strategies in alcohol advertising are to appeal to target audience’s emotional aspects, especially within social situations. Also, results reveal several characteristics of alcohol advertising in magazines such as women’s increasing socio-economic aspects and magazines’ media characteristics.

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