Advertising is one of the ways companies try to showcase their products to sell. Many methods are used to lure the audience into buying their product. According to a study that was done at the Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria, advertising is, “a promotional strategy designed to encourage purchase, and ideally, re-purchase, through brand loyalty” (Coleman). Old Spice an American brand of male grooming products, has created a line of men’s body wash that has a very appealing and humorous advertising campaign.
These ads are designed to get their product noticed in the marketplace. The Old Spice commercials advertisments suggets that if you buy that body wash you will be more masculine and good looking like the ideal man. The Old Spice advertisements are effective in selling their products by giving an ideal image of how a man should be and how they should smell by using ethos, and moving woman emotionally by using pathos and logos, and by making a sexual theme that grabs the audience’s attention using pathos.
Old spice was founded and created by William Schultz in New York in 1934. It all started when he was inspired by his mother’s perfume, therefore coming up with the first Old Spice product, a women’s scent called Early American Old Spice for Women in 1937. After receiving a lot of profit from that, Schultz released a men’s line of aftershave and soap that was to be used after shaving in 1938. Schultz chose a nautical theme for the Old Spice products, a colonial framework a sailing ship (the Grand Turk) as the trademark on the packaging.
Soon, the company was known worldwide for having the best men hygiene products, causing the company to discontinue the women’s fragrances. A while after that, Old Spice had a 17% market share, but it was not growing. In result, they targeted high school teenage boys creating the first Old Spice deodorant. Old Spice soon started starring famous celebrities like Chicago Bears linebacker, Brain Urlacher. The company’s sales went from one of the least popular brands of deodorant to the second best selling men’s deodorant.
Old Spice decided that it would be even better to switch from customary sexualized ads and appeal to women directly. The man your man could smell like was introduced and received over 40 million clicks on YouTube itself. They began to rebrand with their funny and strange ads. Early in 2014, the company announced their expansion in even more products making them even more popular making Old Spice the most successful story in viral and interactive advertising. One of the ways companies tries to showcase their products is to use ethos.
According to English professors Richard Johnson-Sheehan and Charles Paine in the chapter Rhetorical Analyses, ethos is “using reputation, experience, and values of the author or an expert to support claims” (147). In other words, ethos is the appeal convincing someone of the character or credibility. In our society today, an effective way to sell your product is to appeal to women. According to the website Sheeconomy, women account for 85% of all consumer purchasesespecially made because of a certain brand.
Women have many different opinions on commercials that deal with advertising men products, but for the most part, if they like the commercial they will be more likely to buy the product and recommend it to another man to buy it. One example of ethos that is used in the Old Spice commercial is when he magically appears in a boat, which proves his credibility to the women he is addressing to them that he can treat them better than their man by being on a boat shirtless (“Old Spice: The Man Your Man Could Smell Like”).
In the Old Spice commercial, they use different actors that look like the ideal man, very fit and good looking to promote their body wash. For example, they use an ex-NFL wide receiver, Isiah Mustafa, by showing the traits of an ideal man that are masculine, have a sex appeal, and have humor. Another way the ad uses ethos is by using a famous celebrity. The ad sets up its credibility to the audience by using a popular actor who happens to be the definition of masculinity. This leads us people watching the ad believe that if we use Old Spice, they will be manly like Mustafa.
This is the overall theme in many Old Spice commercials, which use male role models such as Isaiah Mustafah, Terry Crews, and Neil Patrick Harris. In the ad, The Man Your Man Could Smell Like, Mustafa is coming out the shower in a towel, saying in a deep masculine voice, “Hello, ladies”, and continues talking to the woman audience by telling them to look at him and then to look at the man sitting by them leading the woman to compare both men. After that, he says that the man sitting next to you is “Unfortunately not me. ” The commercial rapidly changes scenes showing Mustafa in a romantic setting made to appeal to women.
In one, the scenes, during sunset time he is on a sailboat, right after tickets appear in his hands and says “To that thing you love. ” A moment later the tickets turn into diamonds, and finally, the ad ends with Mustafa sitting on a white horse on a beach. This ad is shown and reminding women that if your man uses Old Spice body wash they will turn like the man in the ad. It makes the man feel like if he buys this body wash, his wife will have a fun time smelling him. Not only does this ad portray that an actor’s attractiveness appeal to women, but also the man’s humor. When a man is funny and good looking that is too perfect for her.
Another way the company tries to sell their product is by using logos by persuading the audience. According to Sheehan and Paine, logos is “appealing to readers’ common sense, beliefs, or values” (147). At first, the ad is not entirely logical such as Mustafa holding two tickets to a concert, and the oyster turning into white diamonds. It uses the logic of the popular advertising strategy that “sex sells” which makes it more appealing and keeps the audience’s attention. The advertisement shows that Old Spice makes the man think that they need this product to attract women.
This then leads to a woman thinking that this will make their man sexier and manly. Even though Old Spice sexualizes the product and ads, it has not been proven that Old Spice will gain sexual satisfaction. Although it has not been proven that it will gain sexual satisfaction, men still tend to buy anything that will possibly please women. Lastly, the advertisement includes pathos. According to Sheehan and Paine, pathos are “using feelings, desires, or fears to influence readers” (147). The main target in the audience of this ad is the female views. He directly says “ladies” when coming out of the shower and compare their “man” to him.
The commercial grabs the audience’s attention by reaching out to the women and give them an ideal image of how their man should be like and how he should smell. For example, the ad shows that women should have a man like Mustafa, who will buy them “two tickets to that thing they love,” give her diamonds, or ride up on a white stallion who is the “knight in shining armor. ” All of these things are examples of gender stereotypes and satisfy women. Therefore, making women more likely to purchase the Old Spice Body Wash for their man. Not only does this commercial reach out to women, but also to men as well.
It targets men by showing them what an ideal man is supposed to look like. It turns them to think that they want to be like fit, attractive, and funny like the “ultimate man. ” Another way this ad captures the men emotionally is that man will think that they are that the man currently that their lady is expecting them to be, but after using Old Spice, they will more attractive to women. In addition to pathos, Old Spice is using the logical fallacy false dilemma. A false dilemma is when you present only two possible choices in a complex situation when there is actually more (Beers).
This means that either you buy Old Spice Body Wash or you won’t smell good and won’t be appealing to the ladies as a guy who uses the body wash. In addition to appealing to women’s needs and a man’s emotional need to smell sexy to attract women these advertisements hold a strong old advertising strategy that sex sells. All of Old Spice Body Wash commercials are sexually themed can be appealing to both men and women and sure capture the audience’s attention. These ads are both appealing to both men and women because of the fit good looking and speaking in a seductive voice and romantic locations.
By holding the audience’s attention, it helps them remember the ads. The Old Spice ads are successful because they lead to discussions with other people who have seen them. The advertisers need to be careful with how much sexual content they use. If there the sexual content is overdone the intended work might not work. The Old Spice commercials are mixed with the right amount of humor and sexual content to make the perfect commercial that captures everyone’s attention. Old Spice is successful in selling their product because it is appealing to women, make men want to look and smell manly, and by creating a sexual theme.
The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” advertisement was a success that it has reached more than half a billion views on YouTube ever since it came out in 2010. It is so successful by using the perfect balance of humor, rhetorical strategies such as ethos and pathos, and logos, and gender stereotypes. These are all done in order to keep the audience’s attention and convince them to buy Old Spice. The writer and producers make all of this certain things in the commercial to effectively sell their Old Spice Body Wash.