Controversial American Apparel (50 NSFW Pictures)
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Advertising Strategies Debunked
Walhberg & Klein Effect
When controversial advertisements come to mind, it’s hard not to mention Mark Walhberg holding his crotch for Calvin Klein. We like to use this example as it was a was genius form of marketing, using jealousy and envy to sell millions of dollars worth of underwear to men just because of the reaction from the opposite sex.
When men hear women talk about how sexy a model is, our ego kicks in almost instantly. Most men believe they’re good looking and usually find other excuses for their lack of success with the ladies. We justify it by thinking something along the lines of:
AA’s Advertising Approach
American Apparel’s approach is no different from Calvin Klein’s. They put out ads that border pornography, making us drool in admiration. Women see this and subconsciously want to become the same girl as in the ads (in theory). This has been how the fashion industry has been marketing their products for many decades.
Marketing For WOMEN
About 10 years ago, American Apparel realized that this strategy wasn’t working so well because unlike men, most women assumed they could never carry the same sex appeal that their favorite models have.
American Apparel needed a new way to make women relate to their ads. Their solution was so simple that it’s amazing no one ever though of it; they made the decision to stop airbrushing models in post editing. All of a sudden their targeted audience reacted completely different. When most women see a non airbrushed model their thoughts go something like this:
Other women will look at these ads and think:
Regardless on how you react, you need to understand that the company has achieved what they wanted by getting any reaction from you. Marketing towards women has become entirely based on insecurities and today, more than 80% of women are insecure.
80% of women think they’re not beautiful.
Men think over 80% of women are beautiful.
In addition to not airbrushing, many of the models you see are not famous and AA is known to do in store shoots with regular employees or customers that are interested in posing for the brand.