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COP3 - Practical - Rationale


For the practical side of the Context of Practice module, I decided to create a re-brand of leading independent campaigning organisation, Greenpeace. Greenpeace is an International non-governmental, environmental organisation, which focuses on trying to solve world-wide issues such as global warming, deforestation, toxic pollution and anti-nuclear issues. The main goal for bringing the theory into practice was to create a synergized body of work, which directly related some of the techniques that are being investigated throughout the theoretical piece of writing and inject them into something that directly related to my personal practice.

To do this, I first had to figure out what the investigation was proving, and how this related to my practice in particular. The dissertation title is as follows; ‘An investigation into the branding techniques, marketing strategies and business structure of Nazi Germany in comparison with those of the McDonalds Corporation’. However, the central driving force of the dissertation is to bring to light a particular set of branding and advertising techniques that hegemonic institutions use in order to obtain global dominance.

These techniques that are discussed are based around various themes that are linked together. The first set of themes are based around a theory put forward by Vance Packard called ‘The 8 Hidden Needs’. The investigation constantly refers to a set of human ‘hidden desires’ and how both the advertising world has targeted these hidden desires in order to gain financial profit.

These methods of selling to our hidden desires are as follows, included with an example of how each one has been previously used;

Packards Hidden Desires

Selling a reassurance of worth. For example, selling soap products to house workers by fostering their ‘ worth of esteem’ directing the advertising away from the feeling that housework is an unappreciated chore.
Selling ego-gratification. For example, the vanity press that prints a person’s book for them, if they cover the publishing costs. Although nobody actually reads the books the authors walk away with a thriving sense of importance.
Selling creative outlets. For example, gardening products that are targeted at older women and all men as a way to replace the ‘growing’ of a child with the ‘growing’ of a garden.
Selling sense of power. For example, selling new cars to men as a way of reviving their sense of power, playing on the fact that their old one does not deliver.

Selling sense of roots. For example, associating bread with ‘the good old days’, which by implication were warm, friendly and homely.

Selling immortality. For example, selling life insurance to men through the perception of their influence. Apparently men willing to accept their physical death but cannot accept their obliteration.


Religious Elements

It was found in the theoretical piece of writing that the compared institutions had a conscious religious quality to the primary ‘logo’ of the brand which helped create a cult-like aspect to the institution. By having this visual quality in my brand, the institution appear to be their own religion, which in turn makes the followers of that religion feel stronger, linking to a selling them a sense of power and a sense of immortality.

Trade Characters

Both institutions discussed rely or relied on a trade character to carry the brand and to put a friendly face on a sometimes inhumane movment or business. By having these trade characters, wether real-life or fictional, it means that the business has a leading figure to look up to. This character needs to directly relate to the target audience. By using the leader of Greenpeace, Kumi Naidoo as a ‘Trade Character’ this instills a sense of power within the Greenpeace community. By depecting him as strong, this gives them a sense of security, in that they are safe under this movement.

Selling Creative Outlets
Selling a Reassurance of Worth

Selling Creative Outlers to the mass is a good way to target their subconcious in a way which makes them productive for the cause. By including Stickers, Stencils and Posters within the DIY Propaganda pack means that their reassurance of worth within the community is instilled through their pysical contribution.

Selling Ego-Gratification

The copy of the campaign is written in a way which makes the individual feel individually targeted and praised. Using this technique of subconsciously targeting the individual’s ego means that it is gratified through the propaganda and therefore his place within the movement is emphasised.

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