- Pages: 6
- Word count: 1352
- Category: Summer Vacation
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Since hundreds of years ago, the society has been obsessed with thinness of woman body. In 1900s, women wore corsets every day for their slim waistlines and curvy appearances, and nowadays, they use various dietary supplements for slender bodies. In daily life, people are exposed to the images of thin models, singers, and actresses that have become the standard of beauty for women in the United States. This persistent exposure to skinny celebrities has forced females to be obsessed with making slender body. With this social trend, a lot of companies started to create products that help to get the skinny body. Along with other companies, PepsiCo Inc. jumped into the diet product business and released “the New Skinny Can,” the Diet Pepsi, which has zero sugars, zero calories, and zero carbs, at New York’s Fall 2011 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (Diet para 1,8). PepsiCo started to place print advertisements for their renewed product, Diet Pepsi, to attract and sell their products to the potential buyers. PepsiCo uses vivid colors, the attractive model, and the tagline to advertise the new designed Diet Pepsi, appealing to people who are on a diet, especially young females.
Blue is the first element that catches the consumer’s eye. The background, the hat, the swimsuits that the model is wearing, and the straw are all in blue. PepsiCo uses a lot of blue for several purposes. First, blue is the color of the sea, coolness, and refreshment (Color Meaning papa 17). It makes women to go on a diet for the perfect body shape to get ready for the summer vacation. PepsiCo correlates the new Diet Pepsi with summer to give a message to the viewers: drinking this new Diet Pepsi will not make people to gain more weight, instead, it will help to get a perfect body and help to be attractive women on the beach who receive attention from men as the model represented in the advertisement. Second, according to food professionals, blue has the effect to suppress the appetite because when our ancestors were searching for food, blue, black, and purple were the warning signs of spoiled or toxic food (Color & Appetite para 5). When blue is with warm colors, such as red, orange, and yellow, it can create a high impact of losing appetite (Color Meaning para 21). The bright red lipstick on the model’s lip makes the viewers not want to eat food, but instead, it makes them to drink more beverages, promoting the sales of Diet Pepsi. Lastly, the use of red, blue, and white in the straw is a direct reference of the logo for PepsiCo. The logo of Pepsi is designed in a sphere-like shape colored by red, white, and blue. Along with the Pepsi logo, these 3 colors are also used in the American flag. Therefore, PepsiCo selected these three colors in order to represent that Pepsi is America’s number one beverage with the patriotism to the United States (Analysis para 1). The predominant blue and red white details draw attention from the customers and promote the sale of the new Diet Pepsi.
The second feature that stands out is the model. The model represented in the advertisement is Sofia Vergara. She is an American-Columbian actress and model who became famous for the role of Gloria Delgado-Pritchett in the comedy series Modern Family (Sofia para 1,8). PepsiCo chose Sofia Vergara for its model even though she is not the ideal type of skinny woman. She is known for her curvy and toned body, but in this advertisement, she looks like a tiny woman having a thin face and shoulders. Her face looks thinner than her normal look due to the large hat that covers her forehead and the contouring makeup on her cheeks and nose which helps to enhance the facial structure. The shadow on her shoulder allows her to have thinner arms comparing to her normal appearance. By portraying her as a thin woman, it clearly shows the effect of the new Diet Pepsi that helps to lose weight. Also, the context in the advertisement, “Sofia Vergara for Diet Pepsi” emphasizes the fact that she acknowledged the new Diet Pepsi as her favorite beverage (PepsiCo). By choosing her as the model of the new Diet Pepsi, PepsiCo establishes the credibility between the viewers and the product that the new Diet Pepsi has the guaranteed effect on diet by the famous actress, Sofia Vergara, who is known for her perfect body.
In addition to the selection of the model, the outfits of Sofia Vergara attract more customers targeting many young females. In the advertisement, she is staring at the camera with her perfect skin in order to make an eye contact with the viewers. This direct eye contact makes her as a beautiful woman who is full of self-confidence and dignity. Her classy large sun hat and halter neck swimsuits with perfect makeup and earrings suggest that she is a wealthy woman who enjoys the summer vacation on the beach. Also, her action, drinking soda in the aluminum can through a straw, suggests that she is an elegant woman because people normally drink soda directly from the can, not using the straws. It makes people look nicer with using the straw and sometimes leaning back to drink beverage from the can makes people get dirty from spilling soda on themselves. These appearances allow her to look like an attractive woman that other women would want to be like her. She is the ideal American woman who has wealth, elegance, and beauty. Young females would want to buy the new Diet Pepsi to be like her. Her appearance attracts not only young females, but also attracts male consumers. The bright red lipstick that is applied on her big lips is associated with love and seduction that brings attentions from the male consumers. By presenting the model with elegance and seductive outfits, the PepsiCo brings great attention from both female and male customers, appealing to a wider customer base and make females to admire her.
The last important feature is the Diet Pepsi can and the tagline, “the new skinny can” in the advertisement (PepsiCo). There are some common features between the can and the tagline. First, they both have similar slim shapes. The can has a slimmer and taller shape than the normal shorter and wider soda cans. Especially, the soda can is placed in the center of the advertisement to bring attention from the viewers by highlighting their differentiated product from other companies with the new designed shape of the can. Along with the slimmer aluminum can, the font of the tagline is simple and slim. This font is associating with simple advertisement and the idea of skinniness. This integration between two features give the clear message: this drink will bring the ideal thin body. Second, they are both placed in the vertical way. The thinness of the soda can with the straw looks like a straight line. The tagline in the right side of the advertisement is written in the vertical direction while other texts are written in a horizontal way. These vertical lines emphasize the overall message of the advertisement: by drinking our new product, customer will get a long and skinny body shape with “zero calories, zero carbs, and zero sugars” (PepsiCo).
After releasing this new Diet Pepsi, PepsiCo received a harsh criticism, exacerbating the obsession of being skinny. The national Eating Disorders Association commented that PepsiCo is “thoughtless and irresponsible,” making curvy women to feel ashamed about their appearances, idolizing the skinniness (Pepsi). Despite of harsh criticisms, they succeeded to sell their new product, “the new skinny can,” using this eye-catching print advertisement (PepsiCo). This advertisement helps to bring attention from the viewers, especially from young females and males, by using different visual elements: the colors, the model, and the tagline. With this clever marketing strategy, PepsiCo effectively promote its new Diet Pepsi, but also get a sense of antagonism from feminist and health-related associations by instigating the unhealthy thin to every woman in the United States.