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Analysing Advertisements

Learning Objective: 
to demonstrate and apply knowledge and understanding of media concepts 
in an analysis of how meanings are created in advertisements (AO1 and AO2)

Success Criteria:
- demonstrate awareness of strategies used by advertisers to engage their audience
- show an understanding of the gap between messages and the reality (verisimilitude)
- explore how advertising approaches have changed throughout history


  • THINK: List some methods you think advertisers use to get consumers to buy their cigarettes - include any examples you can think of
  • PAIR: Get together with someone and compare your ideas
  • SHARE: As a class, discuss what we know already


In groups, you will work on analysing some tobacco advertisements from 1930-1950 and 1960-1990. We will compare the strategies from the different time periods and find common ones to use to explore contemporary tobacco advertising.

 For each advert, discuss and note down:-
  • who the target audience is
  • strategies or 'tricks of the trade' used to attract their audience
  • what you think each marketer is saying about smoking
  • how they make smoking appear to be a desirable activity
  • how they downplay the negative side of smoking
  • methods of persuasion
 Group 1: 1930s-1950s  Group 2: 1960s-1990s