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Healthy Skepticism Library item: 2054

Warning: This library includes all items relevant to health product marketing that we are aware of regardless of quality. Often we do not agree with all or part of the contents.


Publication type: book

Sutherland M, Sylvester AK.
Advertising and the Mind of the Consumer 2nd Ed: What works, what doesn't, and why.
Sydney: Allen & Unwin 2000


Description : This fully-revised, international edition of a successful Allen & Unwin title describes how advertising works and why it has an influence on us.

By the time we die, we will have spent an estimated one and a half years just watching TV commercials. Advertising is an established and ever-present force and yet, as we move into the new century, just how it works continues to be something of a mystery.

In this new international edition of Advertising and the Mind of the Consumer, renowned market researcher and psychologist Max Sutherland has been joined by Alice K. Sylvester, a prominent American advertising agency figure, to reveal the secrets of successful campaigns over a wide range of media, including advertising on the internet. Using many well-known international ads as examples, this book takes us into the mind of the consumer to explain how advertising messages work—or misfire—and why.

Advertising and the Mind of the Consumer is not just a ‘how to’ book of tricks for advertisers, it is a book for everyone who wants to know how advertising works and why it influences us-for people in business with products and services to sell, for advertising agents, marketers, as well as for students of advertising and consumer behaviour.

‘Essential reading for all practitioners and everyone interested in how advertising works …’

John Zeigler, Director of Digital Strategy, DDB Worldwide.

‘… reveals the secrets of effective advertising gleamed from years of sophisticated advertising research. It should be on every manager’s bookshelf.’

Lawrence Ang, Senior Lecturer in Management, Macquarie Graduate School of


‘… [the authors] demystify the magic of advertising in their thoughtful and practical explanation of what makes good ads work …’

Sara Lipson, Director of Consumer Sciences, AT&T

‘Puts the psyche of advertising on the analyst’s couch to reveal the sometimes surprising mind of commercial persuasion.’

Jim Spaeth, President, Advertising Research Foundation

Table of Contents :



About the authors

PART A Why advertising has remained a mystery for so long


1 Influencing people: myths and mechanisms

2 Image and reality: seeing things in different ways

3 Subliminal advertising: the biggest myth of all

4 Conformity: the popular thing to do

5 The advertising message: oblique and indirect

6 Silent symbols and badges of identity

7 Vicarious experience and virtual reality

8 Messages, reminders and rewards: how ads speak to us

9 What’s this I’m watching? The elements that make up an ad

10 The limits of advertising

PART B What works, what doesn’t, and why


11 Continuous tracking: Are you being followed?

12 New product launches: don’t pull the plug too early

13 Planning campaign strategy around consumer’s mental filing cabinets

14 What happens when you stop advertising

15 The effectiveness of funny ads: what a laugh!

16 Learning to

About the Author : Max Sutherland, is a psychologist and leading advertising researcher, and is currently Visiting Professor of Marketing at Santa Clara University in California and Adjunct Professor of Marketing at Monash University, Australia. He is the immediate past Chairman and Creative Director of MarketMind Technologies, a company which specialises in tracking the effects of advertising for leading advertisers such as Gillette, Kodak, McDonalds, Qantas, McCain, Nestle and Volvo. Alice K. Sylvester is a prominent American advertising agency figure and is Vice President, Brand Insights at Young & Rubicam Inc in Chicago. She is widely published and a frequent speaker on advertising at conferences world wide.


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There is no sin in being wrong. The sin is in our unwillingness to examine our own beliefs, and in believing that our authorities cannot be wrong. Far from creating cynics, such a story is likely to foster a healthy and creative skepticism, which is something quite different from cynicism.”
- Neil Postman in The End of Education