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Advertising and Its Use in the Shaping of Consumer Gender Identities

             Advertising is the activity of promoting a product, service or idea to a particular target audience. The cosmetic industry, which will be the focus of the author, relies heavily on advertisement. The advertiser talks to the intended audience through "mass media": television, radio, billboards, newspaper and magazines ( Aaker, Batra, Myers, 1992). The most immediate form of advertisement is visual, consisting of colourful images with catch slogans that are design to stay in the reader's mind for as long as possible. .
             In the advert there is usually a reference to the ideal consumer of the advertised object. Frequently, the consumer's imageis featured in the advert with the product so that the targeted product or brand audience quickly recognise that the message is aimed at them. How the consumer's gender image is presented in visual advertisement is of critical importance in influencing the advert audience. Sex is a prominent symbolic element in ads, especially in magazines. .
             In the advertising process there are, according to Aaker et al, four main institutions: " the advertiser, the advertising, the media and the research suppliers" Aaker et al think that the most responsible people in the formulation of an advertisement are the Brand Managers. Their role is to coordinate all the decisions made about the advert. They oversee all the function operated toward the success of the advert as well as the maintenance of the Brand image. Brands of cosmetic products have the targeted consumers whose loyalty they wish to keep?. Adverts" basic objectives are to communicate the relationship between consumers and brand. The signs in ads" messages should be accessible to the intended readership. What advert of cosmetic products use most are the bodies of consumers to display the relation between user and product. The adverts of cosmetic brand use bodies to transfer symbolic meanings to the users of the brand.

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