Psychological Applications in Advertising
Psychological Applications in Advertising
Applying what we know about Psychology to interpreting Advertising Method and intent. Advertising is applied psychology
In this final project, you are free to creatively apply your thoughts. Anything is “correct” if your interpretation of the application of Psychology makes sense. Identifying a wide variety of
psychological concepts will strengthen your assignment and grade. In other words, try to apply some other topics in psychology in addition to material discussed relative to Social Psychology.
Examples of areas you may draw from are listed below. Note that you may use any other topics covered during the semester, you are not limited to this list.
Achievement (need for)
Attraction theory (ies) *
Gender Roles / Gender Stereotyping*
Hierarchy of needs
Learning Theories: Classical Conditioning
Learning Theories: Operant/Instrumental Conditioning
Learning Theories: Social Cognitive
Memory (Be very specific about which memory concept is being applied.)
Nervous system (sympathetic, parasympathetic)
Neurotransmitters (specify which as well as how they function)
Personality theory (be specific)
Problem solving (specify)
* Must be used at least once
Ads must be taken from print media. Ads found on the Internet or other non-print media sources will not be accepted
1. Find 4 print Ads that you think are particularly effective in demonstrating some of the psychological concepts we have discussed this semester, from any of the CHs.
2. Attach each Ad to a separate piece of paper and clearly number each Ad (1,2,3,4).
3. For each of the 4 Ads:
Identify 3 Social Psych or other psychological concepts, principles, and/or theories that are demonstrated in the Ad.
You may want to point out that something (some psychological application) was attempted but was not successful.
A. Explain how each of the 3 psychological concepts is used (applied) in each Ad.
B. Identify the target audience (market) for the Ad.
C. Provide a very brief (two-three sentence) critical opinion stating why you think the Ad is successful or unsuccessful.
You are free to point out that an Ad may have been intended to apply something, but is not successful.
Anything that you would like to add? Be sure to indicate that this is an extra credit add-on section for the Ad you are analyzing.
A recommended tactic for extra would be to apply an additional psychological concept in your Ad analysis.
In selecting Print Ads: I recommend that you select Ads that are “out there.” Out there Ads are more fun and it is usually easier to identify applied psychology in them.
Boring Ads are usually boring and thereby harder to work with.
Advertisements for any products, services, or social causes are acceptable. Any print sources are acceptable.
The page format for each of the 4 Ad analyses is provided below:
Psychology 100 Psychological Ad Analysis
YOUR AD WILL BE HERE – glued or stapled to the page
3 psychological concepts.
• 1st concept: Identify and explain how it applies to the Ad
• 2nd concept: Identify and explain how it applies to the Ad
• 3rd concept: Identify and explain how it applies to the Ad
Target audience identity.
Very brief critical opinion of Ad effectiveness.
Extra credit (optional)
Your assignment paper will be a minimum of 4 pages long (1 page per ad), but may be longer if any of your Ads require an entire page (full page Ads or 2-page ads).
Your write-ups must be typed. Handwritten work will not be accepted.
Include your name on each page.
Pages must be stapled together; lost pages will be counted as “lost.”
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