Bandwagon


When an ad uses the "bandwagon" method, it attempts to convince a consumer to take interest in a product simply because other people claim to have liked that product. The common phrase of "jump on the bandwagon" refers to people that believe in a product simply because another says to and not because they have formulated their own opinion about it. The use of bandwagon is usually just an opinion of a product that doesn't necessarily work for everyone, but companies and people use creative techniques to convince viewers that their product is the best and works for all types of people.

The ad may not say whether people found joy in the product or if they were unpleased with it. This can be a problem if a consumer tries the product and dislikes it. Advertisers use people "that have found success" in a product in their commercials to convince the viewers that they will find the same success. These adverstisements make it seem like many people have tried their product and found that it works. For example, in the Nasonex bee commercial, the spokesperson explains that "four million people used Nasonex last year." With this statement, the consumer is not sure whether four million people used Nasonex and found contentment with the product, whether some liked some dilsliked the product, or if all four million people tried Nasonex and disliked it.


Using the bandwagon appeal for different types of products can be a way of tricking the buyers into thinking a product works great and something they should buy.Weight loss product commercials are notorious for using the bandwagon appeal in a decieving way. The people on the commercials say how easy it was for them to lose weight and the viewers tend to believe them. Most of these ads also use Before and After Pictures to further convince the viewers of the product's quality. However, these commercials are very decieving because only a select few people will actually find the same results, and the advertisments only use the people that have gotten the best results in the actual commercials. Also, most weight loss commercials don't state the actual number of people who do not get good results from the product. At the end of most commercials, the ad usually goes through a list of problems or side affects that can come with taking this product, and are said so quickly that the audience doesn't pick up on them. If people knew all of the true facts about the product, then most of the time they wouldn't buy it.

Not only are weight loss product commercials known for decievingly using the bandwagon method, cell phone companies are also guilty of using this technique to convince their audience to buy their product. Most cell phone companies come up with a creative saying at the end of their commercials that sticks in the audience's head and makes them think about their cell phone company. AT&T for example, uses the catchy slogan of "AT&T America's Best Coverage Worldwide." Not only is this not entirely true, but many people have their own opinions of which cell phone company works best. If people hear that AT&T does in fact have the "best coverage worldwide," then people may be assured or feel like they have to switch companies and see how the other phone company works compared to what they have now. Verizon also uses the bandwagon method by saying they are "America's most reliable network." America Online is another great example of bandwagon. Their saying, "So easy to use, no wonder it's number one," is an example of bandwagon making people think that they are the number one company to use when that is not statistically proven. People's decisions to use different online companies may alter after hearing commercials like these, even though they might not turn out to be the best for them in the end. People are just "jumping on the bandwagon" due to the commercials they watch and going along with what they think is true. Many times when companies use the bandwagon method, they say their catchy phrase or slogan towards the end of the commercial, allowing their audience to think about what was just said.

Movie trailers are also dependent on the bandwagon appeal because they almost always use the positive comments of critics to encourage the viewer that the movie is great. I cannot begin to remember how many times I have heard the words "...critics are calling this the best movie of the year". Once again this is decieving because whether or not someone likes a movie is entirely up to personal opinion and technically speaking there can really only be one "best movie of the year". For example, hearing a critic claim that a movie is amazing could sway someone's interest in going to see the movie. This then influences viewers and can get more people to go to see the movie, even if it isn't good. Whether a person chooses to believe the claim of a product or the critic's review of a movie is completely up to them. But, a person is much more likely to believe an advertisment if they see that others have tried and liked the product as well.

While the bandwagon technique can be greatly used as a deceptive technique in advertising, it may also be used to portray a certain social message, generally to the teenage generation, as many teenagers tend to follow the crowd in order to seem "cool." Often times, this bandwagon technique is used to sway teen involvement in certain actions, which relates to the concept of Association by Cool. However, the technique can be used as a way to discourage certain behaviors, which can be thought of as a "reverse bandwagon" technique. For example, the Above the Influencecommercials use the theory of the bandwagon in order to persuade the teenage audience to abstain from drinking and using drugs. These type commercials generally target the self-esteem and independence of the teenager, which then influences him or her into action, or "non-action." The commericals seem to send a message of "Everyone is not doing it", instead of "Everyone is doing it."
The bandwagon appeal is something that many people get influenced by and is one of the many reasons why advertising different things such as products, movies, and social messages help to promote their business. The bandwagon method is used a lot these days and is a very common and successful way to draw the attention of their viewers. The bandwagon techniqe is effective and still used today, because generally, people tend to "follow the crowd."

Related concepts: Association by Cool.