Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You

3.76 avg rating
( 46 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780470683095: Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You

As citizens of capitalist, free-market societies, we tend to celebrate choice and competition. However, in the 21st century, as we have gained more and more choices, we have also become greater targets for persuasive messages from advertisers who want to make those choices for us.

In Sold on Language, noted language scientists Julie Sedivy and Greg Carlson examine how rampant competition shapes the ways in which commercial and political advertisers speak to us. In an environment saturated with information, advertising messages attempt to compress as much persuasive power into as small a linguistic space as possible. These messages, the authors reveal, might take the form of a brand name whose sound evokes a certain impression, a turn of phrase that gently applies peer pressure, or a subtle accent that zeroes in on a target audience. As more and more techniques of persuasion are aimed squarely at the corner of our mind which automatically takes in information without conscious thought or deliberation, does 'endless choice' actually mean the end of true choice?

Sold on Language offers thought-provoking insights into the choices we make as consumers and citizens – and the choices that are increasingly being made for us.

From the Authors: Five misconceptions About the Effects of Advertising

Coauthor Julie Sedivy
It’s easy to feel as if we’re in control of the choices we make. But as cognitive science is discovering, much of our own thinking remains hidden from our conscious awareness. Sold on Language explores the science of language and persuasion, along the way popping some illusions about how we respond to advertising. Here are a few common misconceptions:
  1. I don’t pay attention to ads, so they don’t affect me.
    You are bombarded by ads, most of which you push to the edges of your attention. But it doesn’t mean you aren’t processing the information in them. Think of your visual system: You have clear, detailed vision (called central vision) in only a very small area where you’re aiming your eyes, but your peripheral vision still sends signals to your brain. When you’re devoting your full attention to a message, you process it in more detail and more skeptically. Peripheral thinking kicks in when you choose not to pay full attention to an ad. It relies on more superficial cues so when you think you’re tuning out an ad, you’re more likely to be persuaded by “truthiness” than by truth.

  2. If I don’t believe an ad, it doesn’t affect me.
    Lies are more effective than you might like to think, even when you know they’re lies. For example, in 2000, John McCain’s run for the Republican Party nomination was badly damaged by false insinuations that he’d fathered a child outside of marriage. Studies have found that people form a poor impression of someone whose name was linked in any way with unsavory behavior--even if it was to clear that person of wrongdoing (for instance in a headline such as “Andrew Winters not Connected to Bank Embezzlement”). And there is a “sleeper” effect of skepticism: A message that is rejected when it’s first heard comes to seem more believable over time. It’s as if the message itself outlives your rejection of it.

  3. Subliminal advertising doesn’t work.
    In 1957, James Vicary claimed to have lured crowds of movie-goers to the snack bar by flashing the commands “Eat popcorn” and “Buy Coca-Cola” for fractions of a second. In the end, Vicary’s controversial “experiment” turned out to be a likely hoax. But recent actual research reveals many ways in which attitudes and behavior can be tweaked by unconsciously perceived information. For example, scientists have seen people shift political attitudes when exposed to the subliminal image of a flag, perform better on a creativity test after watching a subliminal logo for Apple rather than IBM, and yes, under the right circumstances, to crave a specific drink when subliminally “primed” with the product’s name. But there’s no unique or magical power to messages that are too brief to be seen; their effect is just one aspect of the human tendency to suck up, process, and act on as many cues in the environment as possible, without necessarily being aware of having done so.

  4. Today’s consumers are more sophisticated about evaluating advertising than they used to be, and therefore more resistant to its effects.
    Advertising has adapted in interesting ways to public skepticism. One trend has been to move away from ads where the audience passively receives a message, and towards ads where the audience actively re-creates its meaning. For example, one ad for Durex condoms contains no real language at all; it simply has a price tag attached to the company logo ($2.50) and another attached to the image of an elaborate baby toy ($140), leaving the viewer to connect the dots. Implied meanings are especially useful when stating them outright would meet with a lot of resistance. Think of Apple computer’s groundbreaking “1984” commercial. Many understood the ad to mean that Apple was going to liberate people from the soul-sucking conformist corporate culture of then-dominant IBM. Of course, Apple couldn’t come right out and say this. But it could lead viewers to draw this conclusion themselves.

  5. The age of mass marketing and consumer conformity is dead, and people now make more choices as individuals.
    Consumers now often use products as a way to express their personalities and values, and it’s easy to mistake this as a sign of individualism. But paradoxically, this trend reflects the fact that consumers are now more malleable to messages that focus on group identity—it’s just that the groups consumers are identifying with are smaller and tighter. The brand itself becomes a symbol of a group identity, and everything about the message—its music, its choice of spokesperson, the words or accent that are used—serves to reinforce this social identity. Whether you drink Pabst Blue Ribbon or Heineken is not just about individual taste and preference; it’s about signaling which tribe you belong to.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Julie Sedivy is Adjunct Professor of Linguistics and Psychology at the University of Calgary, Canada. She has published dozens of research articles on her experimental studies of language comprehension and production in children and adults. She has served as Associate Editor for the journal Linguistics and Philosophy, and as a consulting editor for the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition.

Greg Carlson is Professor of Linguistics, Philosophy, and Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the University of Rochester, US. He has authored or co-authored more than a hundred articles on natural language semantics and psycholinguistics. He is the Editor of Language, the journal of the Linguistic Society of America.

Review:

"Students and teachers of persuasion would benefit greatly from reading Sold on Language. Other professionals in communication, marketing, change management, sales, negotiation, and politics will find the examples and techniques of influence to be useful as both best practices to emulate and pitfalls to avoid." (PsycCRITIQUES, 11 January 2012)

"The result is a truly enjoyable, ironic and fresh volume, easy and pleasant to read for any type of audience." (Metapsychology, 15 November 2011)

"This is a well-written, entertaining, and penetrating book on advertisers' ubiquitous attempts at persuasion to influence marketplace behaviour, including the basis for an argument that advertisers are bent on making choices for the consumer. . . Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through professionals/practitioners; consumers, general readers." (Choice, 1 October 2011)

"I highly recommend the landmark and must read book Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You by Julie Sedivy and Greg Carlson, to anyone seeking an open, honest, as well an engaging study into the nature of advertising messages, brands, and the words used to market products. This eye opening book will change the way readers approach advertising messages and the illusion that the market offers real choice." (Blog Business World, 28 April 2011)

"For a university student with nascent interests in language and thought, reading this book might well provide a stimulus to take some philosophy or psychology or language sciences, which would be no bad thing." (Times Higher Education Supplement, 21 April 2011)

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Sedivy
Published by John Wiley and Sons (2011)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Reuseabook
(Stroud, GLOS, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description John Wiley and Sons, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Dispatched, from the UK, within 48 hours of ordering. This book is in Brand New condition. Bookseller Inventory # CHL2265267

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 21.94
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 2.64
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Julie Sedivy, Greg N. Carlson
Published by John Wiley and Sons Ltd, United States (2011)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Paperback First Edition Quantity Available: 10
Seller:
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description John Wiley and Sons Ltd, United States, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 1. Auflage. Language: English . Brand New Book. As citizens of capitalist, free-market societies, we tend to celebrate choice and competition. However, in the 21 st century, as we have gained more and more choices, we have also become greater targets for persuasive messages from advertisers who want to make those choices for us. In Sold on Language, noted language scientists Julie Sedivy and Greg Carlson examine how rampant competition shapes the ways in which commercial and political advertisers speak to us. In an environment saturated with information, advertising messages attempt to compress as much persuasive power into as small a linguistic space as possible. These messages, the authors reveal, might take the form of a brand name whose sound evokes a certain impression, a turn of phrase that gently applies peer pressure, or a subtle accent that zeroes in on a target audience. As more and more techniques of persuasion are aimed squarely at the corner of our mind which automatically takes in information without conscious thought or deliberation, does endless choice actually mean the end of true choice? Sold on Language offers thought-provoking insights into the choices we make as consumers and citizens and the choices that are increasingly being made for us. Click here for more discussion and debate on the authors blog: [Wiley disclaims all responsibility and liability for the content of any third-party websites that can be linked to from this website. Users assume sole responsibility for accessing third-party websites and the use of any content appearing on such websites. Any views expressed in such websites are the views of the authors of the content appearing on those websites and not the views of Wiley or its affiliates, nor do they in any way represent an endorsement by Wiley or its affiliates.]. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780470683095

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 24.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Julie Sedivy, Greg N. Carlson
Published by John Wiley and Sons Ltd, United States (2011)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Paperback First Edition Quantity Available: 10
Seller:
The Book Depository US
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description John Wiley and Sons Ltd, United States, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 1. Auflage. Language: English . Brand New Book. As citizens of capitalist, free-market societies, we tend to celebrate choice and competition. However, in the 21 st century, as we have gained more and more choices, we have also become greater targets for persuasive messages from advertisers who want to make those choices for us. In Sold on Language, noted language scientists Julie Sedivy and Greg Carlson examine how rampant competition shapes the ways in which commercial and political advertisers speak to us. In an environment saturated with information, advertising messages attempt to compress as much persuasive power into as small a linguistic space as possible. These messages, the authors reveal, might take the form of a brand name whose sound evokes a certain impression, a turn of phrase that gently applies peer pressure, or a subtle accent that zeroes in on a target audience. As more and more techniques of persuasion are aimed squarely at the corner of our mind which automatically takes in information without conscious thought or deliberation, does endless choice actually mean the end of true choice? Sold on Language offers thought-provoking insights into the choices we make as consumers and citizens and the choices that are increasingly being made for us. Click here for more discussion and debate on the authors blog: [Wiley disclaims all responsibility and liability for the content of any third-party websites that can be linked to from this website. Users assume sole responsibility for accessing third-party websites and the use of any content appearing on such websites. Any views expressed in such websites are the views of the authors of the content appearing on those websites and not the views of Wiley or its affiliates, nor do they in any way represent an endorsement by Wiley or its affiliates.]. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780470683095

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 25.09
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Julie Sedivy, Greg Carlson
Published by Wiley-Blackwell 2011-01-14, Chichester (2011)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New paperback Quantity Available: 10
Seller:
Blackwell's
(Oxford, OX, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Wiley-Blackwell 2011-01-14, Chichester, 2011. paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # 9780470683095

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 24.45
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 7.92
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Sedivy
Published by John Wiley & Sons
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Paperback Quantity Available: > 20
Seller:
THE SAINT BOOKSTORE
(Southport, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description John Wiley & Sons. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New copy - Usually dispatched within 2 working days. Bookseller Inventory # B9780470683095

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 23.25
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 9.16
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Sedivy
Published by John Wiley & Sons (2016)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Print on Demand
Seller:
Ria Christie Collections
(Uxbridge, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description John Wiley & Sons, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. PRINT ON DEMAND Book; New; Publication Year 2016; Not Signed; Fast Shipping from the UK. No. book. Bookseller Inventory # ria9780470683095_lsuk

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 27.83
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 5.11
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Sedivy, Julie
Published by Wiley (2017)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Paperback Quantity Available: > 20
Print on Demand
Seller:
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Wiley, 2017. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used! This item is printed on demand. Bookseller Inventory # 0470683090

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 31.45
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 1.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Sedivy, Julie
Published by Wiley-Blackwell 3/15/2011 (2011)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Paperback or Softback Quantity Available: 10
Seller:
BargainBookStores
(Grand Rapids, MI, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Wiley-Blackwell 3/15/2011, 2011. Paperback or Softback. Book Condition: New. Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says about You. Book. Bookseller Inventory # BBS-9780470683095

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 33.62
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Julie Sedivy
Published by Wileyand#8211;Blackwell (2011)
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Quantity Available: > 20
Print on Demand
Seller:
Books2Anywhere
(Fairford, GLOS, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Wileyand#8211;Blackwell, 2011. PAP. Book Condition: New. New Book. Delivered from our UK warehouse in 3 to 5 business days. THIS BOOK IS PRINTED ON DEMAND. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # LQ-9780470683095

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 23.76
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 11.89
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Julie Sedivy; Greg Carlson
ISBN 10: 0470683090 ISBN 13: 9780470683095
New Quantity Available: 5
Seller:
ReadWhiz
(Portland, OR, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # ria9780470683095_ing

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 36.95
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book