What do you think the best attention grabber in advertising is?

The answer is people and we, in the advertising industry, know the value of this. It can be clearly seen on magazine covers. Just think of all the magazines on your local news stand vying for you to purchase. They use people on their covers because we humans are social animals and are attracted to others. More often than not they are close ups and show the persons eyes and face clearly because research shows that we are especially attracted to the eyes.

It also shows that when we look at an advert we look at the eyes of the person in it. If the model is looking away to the left then we the viewer automatically look to the left where the model is looking. By being aware of this process we can create more powerful designs. In an ad we will use the model to firstly engage you and then by strategic placement use the models eyes to look at the product and therefore lead your eyes to the product be advertised. The same goes for websites, engaging model on home page looking to the link you want your user to click on first.

Visually the image of a person can be used to tell a story in an image much more than a product alone. Nothing pulls at the heart strings like a child crying or suggests love like a passionate kiss, as the old saying goes ‘sex sells’. Whether we agree with it or not, sex in advertising has been thoroughly tried and tested over time to show that yes, it does sell.

On the other hand the old advertising saying ‘when out of ideas – use sex’ is true too. We have all seen those ads selling some kind of automotive or mechanical service where a scantily clad, buxom blonde is simply in the shot for her looks and no other reason. Except there is a strong reason and that is to engage the viewer.

In my opinion the use of attractive models (both female and male) to sell products such as perfumes and fashion is completely acceptable because the very nature of the product and market is about making one more attractive and alluring.

In saying that I disagree with the use of unrealistically stick thin models being used and young females being sexualised. As creators of advertising we must be responsible and accept that the images we create influence society. To say that thin models in campaigns do not influence women to be thin is to say that the advertising campaign is not causing influence. Which also says the campaign is not actually working and if that is the case maybe you need to look for another agency for effective advertising.