Friday, July 10, 2009

Ad Funda --- Hyperbole ?

This section is new in Adformula and is here from a class room question I faced.

What is a Hyperbole?

I will explain it but before that let me say that this will be a permament feature in Adformula hereafter....

The AdFunda series.....

Hyperbole as per wikipedia comes from ancient Greek "ὑπερβολή" (meaning excess or exaggeration) and is a figure of speech in which statements are exaggerated. It may be used to evoke strong feelings or to create a strong impression, but is rarely meant to be taken literally.

Hyperbole is used to create emphasis. It is a literary device often used in poetry, and is frequently encountered in casual speech. It is also a visual technique in which a deliberate exaggeration of a particular part of an image is employed. An example is the exaggeration of a
person's facial feature in a political cartoon.

Needless to say ,in Advertising hyperbole galore. Adguys are the masters in exaggeration- some time justified but most of the times totally unjustified and out of the world.... BUT it sells...may be I sound like a moron here but it really does ! Being Hyperbolic aint a crime ,at least in Marketing and Advertising it is'nt... It helps to be different, to be seen, to be heard , to stand out in the crowd... but some times it is like farting in public, the moment you do it you are different, heard and seen but that is not what you had wanted ,,,right?

It is not that the Crime is done by Ad guys only....The movie industry also bangs on heavily on the power of hyperbole. Whenever a film or television program is released, the guys behind will use selected quotes to hype their products: "Mel Gibson gives the performance of a lifetime!" They may shout from the roof top.... It really doesn't matter if Mel Gibson gave 'the performance of a lifetime' three times last year.

Without hyperbole, advertisers, storytellers and publicists would probably be looking for other lines of work. People but generally know that Hyperbole or HYPE in a common man's parlance is part of Marketing and its communication...

Hype is a short sighted business choice.

It makes a dangerous assumption that the fool who buys what he buys would not if he is aware of the truth - in which case the sellers should not be selling the product in the first place!

It also assumes that customers are there to be exploited , and not your partners in business.For all the great theories on customer centric marketing, it is disrespectful by meaning and implication, and bestows lower on your customers in comparison to your acumen, when defacto the truth may be the other way round.

It is fun in some products and categories (condoms for instance) but when for more complex products where the buyer is in higher involvement and there is a significant competition between brands for the consumer mind space, HYPE may be counterproductive and lead to a calamity...

Enough of funda, now with a simple example let me wind up... here we go ...

If you are done with it, read my previous posts about the same topic here.....

Tail piece:-
"Ladies and gentlemen, I've been to Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and I can say without hyperbole that this is a million times worse than all of them put together."

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