January 17, 2011
By Karina McGowan SILVER, Hartland, Wisconsin
Karina McGowan SILVER, Hartland, Wisconsin
7 articles 0 photos 0 comments

This ad campaign was created by bebe. They are using this ad to sell apparel, accessories, and shoes. They are using an attractive blonde woman in her mid twenties with a man who looks like he is in top physical condition. Women from age 16 to 25 are drawn to this ad. This is assumed due to the woman featured in the ad. She is tan and young looking. The target audience is a white female in her late teens or early twenties in good physical condition with a fair amount of money.
In this ad, the woman is featured in gold boy shorts with a gold bikini top covered by a sheer red shirt. She is wearing a necklace and fashion bangles along with gold strappy shoes. Her hair is blonde and curly and she is wearing makeup creating a smokey-eye look. She is sitting on modern black couch with blinds in the back ground. On the floor in front of her lays a man in only black briefs. He is lying on his stomach under the legs of the woman and his face is not visible. The only word on the page is “bebe” and in small print on the upper left hand side, there is contact information with a website.
This ad is suggesting that women should dress in a seductive way and be only used for sex. The woman in this ad almost portrays a prostitute because her clothing is risqué. The gold shorts and the see through top suggest this. It could offend the female gender. The suggestion that women are seen this way, as sexual possessions, greatly offends me. Her pose and the look on her face look like she is trying to seduce another person in the background, almost as if she is asking for something. This is bad because it is inappropriate to be featured in a magazine geared towards young ladies.
One of the persuasion methods being used is the Beautiful People technique. There is an attractive woman along with an attractive man. They are not the norm for people in today’s society. This is suggesting if you wear bebe clothing, you will look like the people featured in this ad.
Another method being used is the symbol method. When taking a closer look at the clothing in the ad, we see the model is wearing gold. Gold symbolizes wealth. This leads the reader to believe wealthy, high class people own bebe merchandise. Looking at the woman, her facial expression and style of clothing symbolize sexuality. If they had not already been intimate, they soon will be. The ad has many different points of view, most leading to some sort of sexual intercourse.
Another thing that helps portray the image of wealth and beauty is the card stacking technique. This ad is not telling the whole story, leaving the reader with many unanswered questions. Have they had sex? Are they going to? Is there someone else there? These are all questions I have when looking at this ad. It leaves the viewer wondering what could happen. Also, it leaves the viewer wondering if this would be something that could happen to them if they bought bebe clothing or accessories.
The only healthy message I see being portrayed is the fact that people need to be healthy and maintain good physical condition. The downside is these models might not even look like that. With the help of photo enhancements, this might be the product of a computer and not the actual people. This ad could be more truthful if they used models in a different setting, possibly with other women so that girls would be less likely to connect sex and the bebe brand clothing.
Sex is an unhealthy message I see in this ad. It wouldn’t be bad if this ad were targeted towards older women; however, the target market is girls between the ages of 16 and 25. I don’t believe the media should be encouraging young ladies to participate in sexual behaviors before marriage. Another unhealthy message in this ad is the fact that the people look perfect. Viewers need to understand not everyone looks like that and these models went through a lot of work to end up looking that way in the ad. It is controversial that our young adults see themselves for who they are and respect themselves for it. Instead, ads like this lead to eating disorders and botched perceptions of what their developing body should be like.
Ads such as this one contribute to the adolescents in this nation being insecure with their bodies and their need for expensive designer clothes. They are focused on image, when they should be focused on getting a career or education in place. Readers should be more educated in deciphering the hidden messages in today’s ads. This would help the people’s distorted views of themselves, making them more confident in who they are and what real women look like.

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