Clearly Defined Course Concepts Comm 1 De Anza Co

Clearly Defined Course Concepts Comm 1 De Anza Co

Clearly Defined Course Concepts Comm 1 De Anza Co

Comm 1 PAPER ASSIGNMENT # 2 Effectiveness of Persuasion Tactics in Advertising


The goal of this assignment is to provide you with an opportunity to analyze the persuasion tactics used in an advertisement and build a sophisticated argument about the potential effectiveness of the ad for the audience(s) targeted, given the concepts we have covered in this class as well as outside empirical research. Through your analysis, you should show how specific course concepts help to inform the persuasive effectiveness of that specific advertisement. In your paper, you must:

  1. Choose ONLY ONE advertisement to analyze for your paper within the two advertisements that your TA provides you.
  2. Identify who you think is/are the target audience(s) of the advertisement you choose and why.
  3. Identify and analyze THREE important persuasive features in the ad that you think would helpdetermine the degree to which the ad is effective for the particular target audience(s).
  4. Use outside research: In addition to supporting your arguments with clearly defined course concepts andconcrete examples from the ad, you must find and discuss the findings of at least TWO published empirical studies to support your arguments about the effectiveness (or not) of some of the particular features in this ad.


For the introduction and target audience: Identify which ad you are analyzing, and be sure to provide a thesis statement(s) about what you plan to discuss and what is the larger point(s) of your paper (keep the intro brief!). A separate paragraph is also usually necessary to make a case for the target audience(s).

For each separate persuasive feature: Define your term(s) (including citing sources in APA style) and provide evidence that it is indeed being used in the ad. Discuss how that feature would help or hurt (or both) the effectiveness of the ad for a given audience. All three features must be concepts/terms discussed in lecture or course readings. The persuasion-related features, such as source qualities (e.g., credibility, similarity) or message strategies (e.g., fear appeal, use of a particular kind of evidence) usually work best. However, you may also choose features that come from other course topics, such as perception (e.g., attention-getting features like salience; or factors that influence impression formation) or something you find applicable from interpersonal, small group, organizational, or mass comm (but NOT language or nonverbal topics that could have been discussed in Paper #1).

For the empirical studies: Each study must examine in some way the specific feature(s) of the ad that you’vechosen to analyze (e.g., a particular source or message characteristic). Your two studies may both address the same feature, or they may each address a different feature. The studies must be complete studies reported in academic journals (not findings summarized in a textbook; not news reports of studies, etc.).

For each study, describe what the study was about, what the study did (e.g., its basic procedure as an experiment or survey, etc.) and what its main findings were. The exercise that you do for section (Summarizing Published Studies) is practice for this part of the paper, so use it to help you figure out what to summarize. After describing the study, apply the study’s findings to the ad you analyzed (e.g., do the findings suggest that the particular use ofthe feature in the ad would be effective or ineffective? Why/how?). Be sure also to attach to the back of your paper a print-out of the “abstract” page of each research article that you used (this is usually the first page and includes the title, authors, and abstract).