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A rhetoric theory approach to the advertising development process: Using ideation techniques to overcome limitations of client quality, motivation and media

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posted on 2024-02-07, 02:34 authored by Alexander Tevi
This thesis focuses on the use of creativity thinking skills to manage the advertising development process for better creative outcome. To achieve this, the advertising development process itself has to be well understood, and the place of ideation techniques in it. The thesis then goes on to apply ideation techniques within empirical studies dealing with two challenging problems facing agencies: 1) "bad" clients and 2) media neutrality. In Study 1 rhetoric theory was established as a comprehensive theory for the advertising development process-a model that reflects the real-life practices of agencies. Each canon of rhetoric was found to have the generative mechanisms responsible for the strategies of its equivalent stage in the advertising development process. All the principles of the theory found support in advertising research. The theory states that only when all the principles are combined can there be effectiveness in persuasive advertising. Study 2 investigated how ideation techniques can be used to manage the effect of "bad" clients and intrinsic motivation on creative outcome. 207 working creatives in major agencies in South Africa and Nigeria performed a 2X4 between-subject experiment, manipulating client quality and ideation techniques respectively. Each creative was asked to develop two ads in response to a hypothetical brief. The results showed that only unification was able to work against demotivation caused by bad clients. Ideation techniques prevented any effect a "bad" client could have on creative outcome. Unification worked well in a "bad" client situation while metaphor also did well in the unknown client condition. As the first study to directly compare the role of different ideation techniques in a professional creative advertising development process among real-world advertising creatives, it provides insights on the ability of the Templates method to mimic what outstanding creative thinkers do spontaneously. Study 3 examined the notion of media neutrality by using media-dependent and message-dependent techniques to develop ideas for both print and television media. A 2X4 within-subject experiment was performed on 207 working creatives, manipulating media and ideation techniques respectively. Each creative was asked to develop a print ad from an idea developed using an ideation template and a television ad from another idea developed from the same template-all in response to a hypothetical brief. The results showed that whereas media dependent techniques, unification and metaphor, worked equally well on both media, the message-dependent extreme consequence technique worked better on television than in print. Also, comparatively, media-dependent techniques worked better than the message-dependent technique in print while both types of techniques worked equally well on television. This is the first study to investigate the notion of media-neutrality in the advertising development process of real-world advertising creatives. It provides insights on the use of ideation techniques in media campaigns.The findings contribute to theory on the advertising development process and the use of creative thinking techniques to manage creative outcome, which advertising agencies and their clients need to successfully meet creativity goals under different client and media conditions


Table of Contents

Chapter 1 : Introduction -- Chapter 2: The advertising development process: Exploring the rhetoric theory approach for better creative outcome -- Chapter 3: Even "bad" clients deserve quality advertising: Using ideation techniques to overcome limitations of client quality and intrinsic motivation -- Chapter 4: Can media neutrality limit creative potential? Understanding how advertising creatives use ideation techniques across media -- Chapter 5: Conclusion.


Includes bibliographic references Theoretical thesis.

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


PhD, Macquarie University, Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing and Management

Department, Centre or School

Department of Marketing and Management

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Scott Koslow


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