Conventional Persuasion Strategy


I got this video from my Media & Society class. We are on a chapter now in our book that is titled “Advertising” which talks about a lot of the same elements we are talking about now in PR in regards to conventional persuasive strategies. Persuasion is the act of influencing the mind by arguments or reasons offered, or by anything that moves the mind or passions, or inclines the will to a determination. This video utilizes the snob-appeal approach from persuasive strategies and elements of persuasion. The snob appeal approach is the attributes of something that appeals to people who associate those qualities with social or intellectual superiority; a thing’s attractiveness to snobs.

In this video, you have a rather wealthy man I’m sure, being driven around while he eats a meal in the backseat. He reaches for the grey poupon jar in the car, takes some out, and eats it with his meal. His facial expression when he eats it is one of satisfaction, pleasure, and delight; showing off how good it tastes. The car then stops beside the same car with a man in the backseat. They both roll down their windows and the man asks the other one that has the grey poupon, “pardon me, would you have any grey poupon?” and the man replies, “But, of course. Hm” and then motions that the driver drives off, leaving the other man maybe a bit mad, confused, or jealous. The fact that he did not give him any of his grey poupon shows his “snobby” side and also shows the audience that grey poupon is a good enough product that you don’t want to share it. This commercial highlights the persuasion element of propaganda as well. It is a deliberate and systematic attempt to change you thought or manipulate your behavior to stop using whatever you’re using for mustard and to buy this product instead because it’s so delicious that you don’t want to give it up. An issue some people might have when seeing this video or deciding on whether they want to buy it or not would be the fact that their (audience) analysis or perception of it would be that only rich, snobby people buy it and eat it; although the clarity of the message is simple and direct.

I think that this video is effective because it makes people think that the product is good enough to not want to share with anyone, you want it all to yourself. Also the fact that both of the men in the video obviously like it because one has the product and the other wants it.


About kathleenpbrown

Hello everyone! My name is Kathleen, I have a few friends that call me Kathy or Kat but that's about it, Kathleen is fine. A little bit about me... I just graduated from a two-year college in my hometown this summer with an Associates degree in General Studies and transferred to Georgia Southern this fall to pursue a bachelors degree in Public Relations, as of right now. I am a very down to earth person, somewhat shy at times, horrible with directions, and I love to hanging out with my family and friends and having a good time. I also enojoy attending concerts and watching football. (GO DAWGS!) I am very interested to see what this semester will teach me which will hopefully be very useful towards my career in the future.

3 responses »

  1. I definitely agree that this video uses persuasive strategies but I do not agree that it was very effective. You mentioned the issue some people might have when seeing this video or deciding on whether they want to buy it or not would be the fact that their (audience) analysis or perception of it would be that only rich, snobby people buy it and eat it. I’m one of those people. If that’s the audience they were reaching out to then they did a great job but reaching out to everybody to use their product they fell short for me.

  2. Pingback: Classmate blog comments « jharvard

  3. Ah Grey Poupon! I fell in love with this mustard over summer! I also think this commercial is persuasive in the fact that people want what they think is deemed “one of life’s finer pleasures,” or at least I think people would rather have that than things that are not considered so. This commercial makes the mustard seem sort of elegant, high-class, wanted, etc. Also, because the man did not share his Grey Poupon with the other man, it shows that it is so good you would want to keep it to yourself. The way he responded with, “of course” to the man who asked if he had any also made it seem like it was obvious that he would have some Grey Poupon. Watching this commercial is convincing me to go buy some now, just because I know I love it and don’t have any!

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