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Describing language
Describing language

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4.1 Write your own advert

The use of adjectives in advertisements is just one way that we can use language creatively. Taken to the extreme, we can consider the famous slogan first used by Pepsi in 1974 to describe its cola drink, where the creative potential of language is used to excess in a string of adjectives formed from present participles:

Lip smackin, thirst quenchin, ace tastin, motivatin, good buzzin, cool talkin, high walkin, fast livin, ever givin, cool fizzin

In the original, all the words were run together, but they have been separated here in the interests of readability!

In the next activity, you’ll have a chance to put your own creative skills to the test and come up with your own slogan and advertising copy.

Activity 8 What will you sell?

Timing: This activity should take around 30 minutes

Look at the photos below and choose one to write an advertisement for. Decide what the photo is trying to sell, and write the text to go with the photograph. Remember to attract the reader by suggesting attractive qualities through your choice of adjectives. You should decide how much emphasis you want to put on practical aspects, and how much on a more general desirable aura of exclusivity and quality.

Four images showing options for products to advertise. Top left, a fountain pen sits on top of an open notebook. Top right, a multicoloured soap surrounded by teaspoons of bath salts. Bottom left, a plate of spaghetti. Bottom right, a yacht speeding across the ocean.
Figure 5 Options for products to advertise.
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If you know another learner studying this course, you could agree to exchange your advertisements and compare what adjectives you have used. If you are studying alone, you could search online for advertisements for products similar to the one you’ve chosen (a pen, soap, fancy food or a yacht or cruise). Have you used similar adjectives to any of the adverts that you found?