Sexual Appeals In Advertising: How it effects us, how its used

Essay by nabhatiesCollege, UndergraduateA, September 2007

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IntroductionSex in advertising has been the theme of much of 20th Century Advertising. It seems like all we see these days are advertisements which use the human body and sexuality to sell all kinds of products from food and cars to colognes and exercise equipment. It is virtually impossible to tune into an type of media they days and not encounter some type of an ad which uses sexuality to sell it's product. Most of the time sexuality and the use of the product in a real world setting is irrelevant, but for centuries if sexual connotation is put upon the use of a certain product then the product has been a success in the market place. This paper looks at some of the underlying issues surrounding sexual appeals within the consumer world. We look at what sexual appeal is, how it has changed over time, and how effective it really is in influencing consumer buying behaviour.

Furthermore, we designed a survey to see how effective sexual advertising is today, and how these results relate to past studies.

Sexual appeals in advertising appear in two major forms: sexual suggestiveness and nudity. Sexual suggestiveness involves situations that either portray or imply sexual themes or romance. Another form of sexual appeals in advertising is nudity or partial nudity, a technique often used by brands in the fragrance industry. Sex appeals in advertising are used frequently and with explicitness. The trend is not restricted to North America but is prevalent all over the world.

Sexual material in advertising gets instant attention from the consumer, while also retaining what they have seen in their long term memory. These advertisements often feature attractive models in provocative poses it is a strong attention-getter. The sexual content or symbolism in advertisements will enhance recall if it is...