Death by Chocolate Essay
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How have the makers of Death by chocolate made their advertisement successful? Discuss the various techniques used and how they have been used. This is an analysis of the advertisement ‘death by chocolate’. It is an advert promoting a chocolate cake. The advertisement is rich in techniques which have been purposely included to tempt consumers to indulge themselves and give in to the temptation of the cake. Looking at both pages of the advertisement it seems that there is a concealed message which could possibly be summarized as, “go on, be a devil.
” It is almost as if such devilish whisperings jump out at us. This message is communicated by the trident shaped fork in the hand of an ambiguous woman. Although we are given a motionless picture, there is an overwhelming sense of movement towards the cake. The makers have included this as one of the techniques of the advertisement so that the consumers feel that they are holding the fork.
The visual imagery is designed to ‘bring the devil out in you. ‘ Although the chocolate cake is brown, it is laced with a devilish crimson colour which adds to the Satan theme.
It is interesting in this context that the word ‘consumer’ is an old name for Satan which again is another technique used. It is clear that the makers of the advert have worked according to the principle that it is the visual impact of an advertisement that is most effective. Most of the second page is covered with a silky textured crimson colour on a white backdrop that mirrors the combination of the crimson streaked chocolate on a white plate. Red is the colour of the devil, but it is also the colour of danger, excitement and fury.
White is the colour of virginity and the plentiful red suggests a loss of virginity. This technique is very effective as the contrast of the colours remind us of the ‘naughtiness’ inside us which drives us to indulge ourselves in this mouth-watering cake. The producers of this advert have also relied upon visual influence and the psychological imagery conjured up by the slogan and larger writing rather than the small text. The slogan, ‘it’s no angel cake’ is designed to reinforce the ‘evil’ theme. The clever remark on the word angel causes reader to dwell on this word and think about its meaning.
Puns are always mentally stimulating and enjoyable, and it is as if the enjoyment gained from it is presented to the reader as a sample of the cake itself. In fact one gets the feeling that the designers have tried to make the whole advertisement ‘tasty’. The name of the advertisement itself, ‘Death by Chocolate’ is intended to be entertaining and comical. Although the word ‘death’ is used, the intention is not to bring to mind fear or anxiety, but in fact, the effect is far from gloomy. The reader is invited to ‘die’ and be wrapped up in the chocolate, or at least to be ‘dying to eat the chocolate.
‘ For those who are fully tempted by the advertisement and go on to reading the small text, there is much more in store. The text starts off on the, ‘naughty devil’ theme already developed by the visual imagery. The humour in the image of a vicar in The News of The World adds to the atmosphere of sheer ‘evil’. The use of brackets is another technique used which gives the reader the feeling that they are being told a secret, making them feel more involved with the text. This reinforces the effect of the use of the second person to make the reader feel personally addressed.
The next part of the text tries to use words to convert the visual imagery of the pictures and colours into a sense ‘taste. ‘ Words such as ‘cakey-wakey’, ‘dark’, ‘bitter’ and ‘sweet’ reinforce in the words which the readers have seen in picture, and the two together try to combine to bring the images to life. The French word, ‘mi?? lange’ produces an exotic feeling that appeals to the average person. The combination of the words ‘bitter’ and ‘sweet’, which in this contexts maybe oxymoron’s gives a feeling of devilish menace.
The words ‘lascivious’ develop the theme of being ‘naughty’ and gives verbal expression to the stark crimson on a virgin white background. Immediately after this we have a reference to ‘sensual’ pleasure. It seems that the makers of this advertisement are trying to sell a chocolate cake by appealing to peoples sexual desires which nowadays is a very popular technique used by producers. The sexual imagery is completed by the reference to Lolita at the end, who was a youthful twelve year old girl corrupted by an older man.
In conclusion I think that the producers have been very successful in making this advertisement effective as a whole by creating strong visual imagery and reinforcing it with subtle but direct language. I feel that there is a clear and successful attempt to appeal to human weakness and carnal desire, which is arguably what makes this advertisement a successful one.