Analysis of Nike’s ‘Best Day Ever’ Advertisement Through Jib Fowles’ Fifteen Basic Appeals

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In 2021, Nike spent 3.1 billion dollars on advertisements. Companies put this much money into their advertisements to show that their product is the best one on the market. By analyzing Jib Fowles’ fifteen basic appeals, in this essay, I am going to understand the ways in which commercial advertising, specifically Nike’s ‘Best Day Ever’ ad, uses all of these appeals to get people to buy their products and goods.

For my analysis paper, I chose Nike’s ad ‘Best Day Ever’ because I am an athlete and I can relate to everything being showcased in the ad. The ad starts by showing us a young athlete who wakes up early to the sound of her alarm to go on her first run ever. She is still tired but wants to reach her running goals, so she gets outside and runs. In the next scene, a track runner runs a sub-10-second 100-meter run. Next, the ad features scientists that discovered that growing shoes on plants won’t cause pollution like producing them in factories does, so the video shows them cutting shoes off plants. In the next scene, the ad showcases Lebron James dunking the ball in a game where he scores 100 points and breaks Wilt Chamberlain's record. The narrator then tells us that the WNBA will surpass the NBA in viewers, and the first marathon will be hosted on Mars. In the last scene, A’ja Wilson proposes to world leaders that sports should be a right.

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In an effort to understand how advertising affects people Jib Fowles created fifteen basic appeals, which were heavily influenced by the work of writer and psychologist Henry Murray. The first basic appeal is the need for affiliation, which is the desire to be in good company, create family bonds, and establish healthy relationships with friends. Many people want to be affiliated with pro athletes and the best sportswear brand. The next appeal is the need for sex. This appeal is not used often in advertising because it distracts from the message. Fowles found that people do not remember ads that contain sex or nudity in the way that advertisers want them to. The next basic appeal is the need to nurture. This appeal targets women and their need to take care of children and animals. An example of this is seeing ads in the paper or on TV about dogs needing to be adopted. Many people fall for this and end up adopting a dog or animal. The next basic appeal is the need for guidance. Many people need to be pushed in the right direction with classwork and life and to be told life lessons whether it is from mentors or family members. Many people will buy products because advertisers target their traditions. The next basic appeal is the need to aggress. This appeal is “feeling the pressures of the real world to create strong retaliatory feelings in every human. These impulses can come from bursts of anger and violence” (Fowles, 282). Advertisers demonstrate the need to aggress in ads that show people disagreeing over a product. The next basic appeal is the need to achieve. This appeal refers to pushing people and overcoming obstacles. Once people overcome these obstacles, they can attain high standards and surpass their rivals. Advertisers show many people overcoming injuries, fear, and obstacles where they reach their end goals. The next basic appeal is the need to dominate. This is the need to “control one's environment” (Fowles, 283). Although this is viewed as a masculine trait, many advertisers use this to empower and sell women’s products. The next basic appeal is the need for prominence. This is the desire to achieve a high social status and prestige. An example of this would be celebrities and other famous people being featured in advertisements. The next basic appeal is the need for attention. This is the need to be respected and the need to get noticed by people. This is used in advertisements because many people in the ad are being looked up to. This influences people to go buy their products. The next basic appeal is the need for autonomy. This is when you are trying to identify your worth and who you are. This is used in advertisements to convince people that their product can make them more independent. The next basic appeal is the need to escape. This appeal is the need for adventure and to have fun. In these ads, people go exploring and don’t have a care in the world. The next basic appeal is the need to feel safe. The need for security and the need to feel safe while you are at home. This can also be the security of having money and not worrying about being able to pay for things. This is shown by advertisers because their product can “diminish future threats” (Fowles, 285). The next basic appeal is the need for aesthetic sensations. This is when ads are pleasing to the eyes. Things like font, color, and the way things are filmed can make the ads more visually appealing. The next basic appeal is the need to satisfy curiosity. This is the need to wonder and to question. Many ads use this appeal to incorporate cliffhangers to draw people in to then buy or see the product. And the last basic appeal is satisfying physiological needs, such as food, drink, and sleep, which are necessary for survival. Many advertisers make food ads pleasing by how they are filmed. They make our mouths water so we have to go to the restaurant and get food.

An analysis of Nike’s ad ‘Best Day Ever’ shows that some of the 15 basic appeals were used to persuade viewers to buy Nike’s products. In the ad, the appeal of achieving their goals. She achieved her goals by winning the race and beating her competition. In Jib Fowles’ ‘Advertising's Fifteen Basic Appeals’ he states: “The drive energizes people which causes them to strive for their careers and dreams” (Fowles, 82). At the beginning of the race, it shows a panoramic view of the Colosseum and all the people that are there. This ad also demonstrates dominance and winning the race. As Fowles states, “The need to dominate is one to control your environment” (Fowles, 82). At the end of the race, it shows the girl winning and getting her trophy. In this ad, the need for affiliation is demonstrated because you are wearing a brand that so many famous athletes and other famous people wear every day. Fowles states that “the need to affiliate consists of desires to draw near and enjoy cooperating with another” (Fowles, 78). In the ad, the appeal of affiliation is in this ad because the runner knows the other runners and she congratulates them on how well they did. He states: “Americans lack in any case that associates with others in the ad” (Fowles, 78). The need for escape is shown throughout the ad. The girl's escape is running. When she runs, she goes on adventures to all these other places where she sees different things, different places and she sees different people. She is escaping her world and finding other places where she likes to run. Jib says: “The need to escape is the desire to duck out of social obligations to seek adventure” (Fowles, 84).

With Nike putting this much in the advertisement does it actually work and do people buy the product? The answer is yes, Nike is the largest supplier of shoes, apparel, and other athletic equipment.

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Analysis of Nike’s ‘Best Day Ever’ Advertisement Through Jib Fowles’ Fifteen Basic Appeals. (2024, January 04). Edubirdie. Retrieved April 20, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/analysis-of-nikes-best-day-ever-advertisement-through-jib-fowles-fifteen-basic-appeals/
“Analysis of Nike’s ‘Best Day Ever’ Advertisement Through Jib Fowles’ Fifteen Basic Appeals.” Edubirdie, 04 Jan. 2024, edubirdie.com/examples/analysis-of-nikes-best-day-ever-advertisement-through-jib-fowles-fifteen-basic-appeals/
Analysis of Nike’s ‘Best Day Ever’ Advertisement Through Jib Fowles’ Fifteen Basic Appeals. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/analysis-of-nikes-best-day-ever-advertisement-through-jib-fowles-fifteen-basic-appeals/> [Accessed 20 Apr. 2024].
Analysis of Nike’s ‘Best Day Ever’ Advertisement Through Jib Fowles’ Fifteen Basic Appeals [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2024 Jan 04 [cited 2024 Apr 20]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/analysis-of-nikes-best-day-ever-advertisement-through-jib-fowles-fifteen-basic-appeals/
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