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Strike A Match Essay

1991 words - 8 pages

The dense air is moist from the recent down pour, and the final bell of the day chimes. Her eye stings from her father’s exploitation that morning as her mother’s words ‘you should learn to obey’ ring in her ears, but now Lucy glares at the floor, eager to get past the school doors. She ventures to her favorite area that over-looks the pond. Plucking a small white stick out of a box, she rests the cigarette between her fingers. It is an impeccable fit and a habit that escalated since the first hit six years ago. She strikes the match, closes her eyes, and slowly lifts the cigarette to her lips. Inhale. Exhale. White smoke escapes her lips along with her home life. All she has to do is ...view middle of the document...

The first picture is framed in black and white with a glimpse of gray. The gray surrounds the brand name in a hazy outline, drawing attention to the smoke emerging from the cigarette in Lucy’s fingers. Gray is said to signify practical and solidness (“Psychology of Color”). The black and white picture stands out, automatically drawing the eye attention to the first frame. It highlights the cigarette and the smoke which is the product the company is marketing to its customers.
In the next two pictures, dominate colors of red, orange, yellow, and black constitute the story of the advertisement. Red imprisons attention quickly, which is why after the first black and white affect eyes quickly dart to the second frame of the picture. The color produces a sense of energy and excitement. It creates the match in the middle picture to be a source of energy. Surrounding the red is black, a color of domination, puissant, strength, stability, and intelligence, giving the match a more sophisticated meaning (“Psychology of Color”). The match ignites the cigarette, starting the fire. Outside of the black are the two other colors, yellow and orange, that dominate the last picture with the floating lanterns, provoking a sense of warmth, confidence, and clarity (Widrich). Camel persuades customers to see their product as the source of fun. The colors give the audience a sense of warmth and energy, showcasing cigarettes as a good time and happiness, only located where the party is. R.J. Reynolds beckons its audience to come a little closer.
Pinpointing the audience is a strategy that companies spend a lot of time on. They each find propositions that target their products audience and secure a steady income. When it comes to cigarettes, tobacco companies eagerly target teens. About 1,036 adolescent kids begin smoking between the ages of 10 and 13 (Stice). In order to target teenagers, companies have to have something catchy, which is why Joe the Camel was created.
Teens are attracted to cartoons. With that information, R.J. Reynolds Company created Joe the Camel, a cartoon named to persuade teens that cigarettes are cool. Joe became easily recognized and related to the brand name Camel, causing youth sales on cigarettes to rocket. Joe is so recognizably known that eighty-six percent of children from ten to seventeen years old know who he is. Ninety-five percent of those children know that the camel is associated with cigarettes. John Banzhaf, the executive director of Action on Smoking and Health, says that the money is where the kids are. He states, “The earlier you get them, the more likely they are to get addicted. And the earlier you get someone interested in your brand, the more loyal they will be as a customer” (“Unfair Advertising Practices Alleged”). The Camel brand not only aimed for young kids, but young female as well.
In the black and white picture on the ad, a girl sits smoking a cigarette. Not only is the target audience teenagers, but it is female...

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