THE IMPACT OF WOMEN IN ADVERTISEMENT Mass Communication Project Topics
1.0 Introduction 1.1 Background of the Study It is rare these days to see adverts on either print or broadcast media without women playing prominent and visible roles, which range from complementary, subjective, subordinate to major actors in most television adverts. These roles may be ascribed by men who may not only enhance the product being advertised, but add colour, glamour and pleasant feelings to viewers whose interest, attention and patronage are very much sought after. Olayinka, S. A. (2014) Thus, women could be seen oftentimes in the background performing seductive roles in Delta soap. The sole attraction and the major actors were the women shown at the pitch where the glamour was most manifest. Although, there were men there, but women were usually the first attraction. Women are, therefore, beginning to get involved in adverts not only as subordinates but also as major characters and most time found themselves in decision making positions. Most of the advertisement that showcase women have women as the users of the product, such as in the Harpic toilet washer, Sunlight detergent soap, body creams and toilet soaps such as Delta soap, Lux soap e.t.c Similarly, the term advertising and advertisement can be defined in many different ways. One widely used definition appropriate for many years by no longer so was simple “salesmanship print”. Perhaps a more precise definition of the subject would be: advertising, the paid use of adoption of a product, service or idea. An identified sponsor. Alide in Okunna (2002). Says, advertising is a form of communication through the media about product, services, ideas, personalities or organizations, paid for by an identified sponsor. Bovee and Arens (1985) give a more widely accepted definition of advertising as the non-personal communication of information, usually paid form of persuasive information about products (goods and services) or ideas by an identified sponsor through various media. It is an exciting, dynamic, and challenging enterprise. Gillran Dyer (1990) says that, in its simplest sense, the word “advertising” means drawing attention to something or notifying or informing somebody of something. According to the understanding of advertising by Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON) “advertising is a form of communication through the media about products, services or ideas, paid for by an identified sponsor”. In the same vein, Nwosu defines advertising as a group of the activities aiming at and including dissemination of information in fulfilling paid-men-person form, concerning an idea, product or services, compel action in accordance with the intent of an identifiable sponsor. The purpose of Advertising, Frank Jefkins says (1976) is to make known in order to sell or buy goods or services. He explains further that it is the means by which we make known what we have sell or what we want to buy. The American marketing Association (AMA, 1977) cited in Adeagbo (2012) says; “Advertising is any paid form of non-personal Presentation and promotion of goods, Services or ideas by identified sponsors” From marketing point of view, Akinrosoye (2013) quoting Chris Doghuje (1985) says: “Advertising is a marketing tool whose sole aim is to build preference for advertised brands or services” Although, modern advertising is only about 100 year old and the use of advertising actually dates back at least to the 10th century BC. The use of picture in advertisements is necessary. Advertisements with names and symbols on them are always easy from both illiterates and literates to identify with the developments of printing, advertising made its first appearance in a form more nearly related to its present one. A small poster by William Claxton 1450 promoted the sale of a service book published. The first known newspaper advertisement also was a book notice which appeared in a German News book in 1591. It is of note that the common forms of advertising at that time were newspaper, street signs, posters, hand bills. The use was made of by United States Government of advertisement during the civil war to sell bonds. The radio made its incursion into the advertisement world and began to challenge newspapers and others seriously. Television became very controversial because it changed the role of radio, as it became the major source of in-home entertainment since 1950s. The scientific nature of advertising perhaps has created a broad and wide room which impropriated the women folk and exploitation of their intricate characters and quality women traditionally are seen in terms of their appearance, sexually and domestic relations. Accordingly, feminist researcher like inch man and busty, conclusively submit that women are portrayed largely in term of their sexuality or domestic city, while men tend to be shown as dominant, active and authoritative. This perhaps explains to great extent why the role-played by women earlier on were mere subordinate to men. As it has been the practice until perhaps to recent times, the makes take major decisions, handle senior executive parts, think and map out strategies for execution plan on a complementary basis. Nowadays, the impact of women in advertisements has generated a lot of controversy in many parts of the world. Some argue that women are used as followers in the advertisements. They see women as ornaments that are used to beautify the advertisement. They further went to say that women garnish the advertisements and make the adverts appealing to the eyes. To them the seductive nature of women helps a lot in creating interest in the product. Perhaps, this accounts for why must advert agencies see or feel the impact of women in advertisements as a powerful polarized force of feminine attraction over masculine, a phenomenon well cherished for quick awareness of advert and sale of product. The argument here reveals a situation attraction and sustenance as a major factor in any advertisement. These agencies use renowned women, since men and even women alike admire television advertised. Also product adverts like Delta soap, Joy soap etc call to mind what effects womanish roles on advertisements can play on the audience. The impact of women in advertisements and indeed other endeavors are perceived differently, from community to community and according to position of women in the traditional society to which they belong. To African and Nigerian society, women should remain in their traditional and remain in their background, unseen and unheard. The African society perceives exposure of women as a most unwelcome thing. In certain parts of African tradition society exposing of a female’s body termed a taboo, just like the Muslim community forbid women from exposing themselves to certain practices which they term evil and ungodly. Thus, it is not only in advertising by in other fields of endeavor where pronounced roles are unseen at not for women. But in modern times, women are beginning to be exposed and can now engage in activities without much criticism. This research therefore, examines the impact of women in advertisement message. The fields survey research method, which was adopted for this research was deemed appropriate considering the nature of the topics. There was the need to interview men, women and other members of the society on matters relevant to study.