Significance of Persuasion in Entrepreneurship
Within an entrepreneurial context, persuasion as an art is invaluable. Persuasion urges and implores individuals to change behaviors and attitudes to adopt a different or new attitude. As such, the aim of persuasion is to attack individual’s worldviews regarding different aspects. This goal is achieved through the provision of information for countering the existing beliefs as well as displacing the beliefs with new ones. However, entrepreneurship mainly focuses on innovation. As such, there are new ventures that entrepreneurs create in order to improve the world. Therefore, it is not a wonder that within the world of entrepreneurship persuasion plays a vital role. This can be seen in the contexts of the real-world via different persuasive messages.
Various persuasion theories are applied by these messages so as to realize the main goal which is to change the attitudes of people. Such theories include heuristic-system theory, cognitive dissonance theory and elaboration likelihood theory. Advertisements for instance more so the print ads major on persuasion. The Coca Cola ad on ‘open happiness’ for instance applies cognitive dissonance theory. In this paper, the application of different cognitive dissonance aspects in the ‘open happiness’ ad of the Coca Cola Company is analyzed.
There are several international firms that have been operating for quite some time now regardless of the fact that their products’ benefits are relatively low. Coca Cola and McDonalds are examples of these kinds of companies. McDonalds for instance majors in supplying fast foods that have high calories amounts. The debate about the effects that products with high calories have on human has been going on. Nevertheless, this company remains the largest fast food supplier in America as well as other parts of the world. The Coca Cola Company has also been around for a long time providing soft drinks that have high calories in large scale globally. These drinks do not provide health benefits because consuming them has adverse effects on human health. Nevertheless, its sales have always been increasing every financial year. Persuasive techniques that these companies employ in their ads are their secret. The persuasive Coca Cola ad of 2010 which promises open happiness to its consumers is an example of such ads. The implication of this ad is that every time one feels stressed, they simply need to sip a coke to get cheered up.
‘Open happiness” ad’s suitability is not a coincidence that occurred by an accident. Advertisers spend a lot of time studying the audience, identifying their needs as well as determining the best ways of satisfying their needs. After this, they come up with ads that are in line with various psychological theories. Cognitive dissonance theory, heuristic-systematic theory and likelihood theory are examples of such theories. Cognitive dissonance theory is applied in this advert. The implication of this theory is that individuals can be persuaded by others through the creation of inconsistency in their cognitions and this creates psychological discomfort. Such cognitions include behaviors, beliefs or attitudes. Dissonance in this case is imbalance that is created between the actions and beliefs of a person. Once dissonance has been created the advertisers provide consonance via promising balance between behavior and belief. Human beings need balance and consumers rush to buy products that enable them to acquire balance that they may have lost. This concept is what open happiness ad capitalizes on.
The slogan that is chosen for an advert is very important. The target consumers for the Coco Cola Company are from the entire globe. Therefore, a common aspect is required for this audience to be captured and this should cut across racial boundaries. As such, the company chose the word happiness because this human need is global. Thus, this advert targets cognition whose belief is that everybody needs happiness to lead a quality life. The aim of all people is to be happy in life but to be happy one does not have to drink a coke. Nevertheless, the “open happiness” slogan means that happiness can be achieved by drinking coke.
This causes dissonance in audience’s minds because the belief and action that is necessary for the belief to be achieved do not agree. As such, the feeling of individuals is that failing to drink the products of the Coca Cola Company denies them an opportunity to enjoy happiness in life. Further, this ad coerces audiences to choose coca cola products through the gaiety of this advert. As such, the feeling of the audience is that drinking the products of coca cola is important in order to realize happiness. This mentality is drilled into the consumers’ mind by advertisers and this makes them feel happy on consuming coke. As such, consonance is regained and they get a comfort zone.
The main intention of this advert is to market or sell products to consumers. Nevertheless, there are several obstacles that must be overcome by the company for this to be achieved. For example, the company has to outdo competitors who include Pepsi. It must also overcome the health debates about its products that have high calorie amounts. As such, this company employs countering factors in order to realize high sales all the time. Refreshment, excitement and happiness are the main attributes that the adverts of coca cola have. Coca Cola Company’s products are now associated with happiness by most consumers regardless of the associated health issues. Thus, it is no wonder that the slogan “open happiness” was chosen by Coca Cola for its ad in 2010.
It ought to be noted that to human, happiness is an evasive need and it does not recognize cultural boundaries. According to Maslow, happiness is an important human race’s need. As such, the aim of Coca Cola is to meet the consumers’ needs internationally via this slogan. Consistence of the Coca Cola providing excitement and happiness to the consumers is maintained by the advert. It appeals to consumers’ emotions because it promises to meet their happiness need. This is very tempting because depression-related diseases are currently increasing. As such, consumers will most likely increase coca cola drinks’ consumption so that they can remain happy.
In a nutshell, persuasion is a tool that is effective in marketing. It plays an instrumental role of making individuals feel that they should buy the product to stabilize their life. This concept is used by advertisers in drawing buyers to purchase their products as seen in the Coca Cola advert. The ad appeals to emotions and feelings of the consumers while changing them to match the intention of the seller via different theories’ application. The “open happiness’ ad by coca cola is an example of this because it has several cognitive dissonance theory’s elements. The implication of this theory is that humans are always seeking balance and consistency. When this balance is disturbed dissonance occurs and people are ready to do anything to regain the balance. Coca Cola disrupts happiness interpretation by man while providing solution which is drinking coke. This enhances the consumption of products from Coca Cola Company.
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