A Pragmatic Analysis of Strategies in English Advertising
The significance of advertisments in modern society, especially in commerce, is universally admitted. As is known, the effect of an advertisement depends on several elements, such as the picture, the sound, the brand, etc. Nevertheless, language is the primary element. Advertising language, as a special kind of communication, exerts a great influence on the consumer’s purchasing power. In the communication of advertising, advertisers often employ various strategies to draw people’s attention and to win people over. Pragmatically from the point of views of Relevance Theory, Cooperative Principle, Empathy Theory and Economy Principle, this paper introduces four commonly used strategies in advertising: fresh and fantastic language, simple but peculiar language, moving and touching language, and brief language.
2. Fresh, fantastic language and Relevance Theory
It is an age of outlandish expectations, and obviously, dreary cliches won’t appeal to consumers. In oder to promote the products and attract the potential buyers, fresh and fantastic language is widely employed by advertisers, which is an advertising strategy that can be explained by the Relevance Theory in pragmatics.
According to Sperber and Wilson, relevance is conceived as relative or subjective, as it depends upon the state of knowledge of a hearer when they encounter an utterance.⑴ Applying the theory to the comprehension of the advertising strategy of using fantastic language, we can see that when readers are attracted by these fetching and sometimes even unusual sentences, they may first feel confused, but soon they will start thinking about the real intention of the advertisement, thus the aim of advertising is reached.
There are abundant cases to prove this. For example:
(1) No bread. No jam.
This is an advertisement for London metro....