Quiz : Ameritrade 's Attempt At Break Away From Traditional Marketing

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Junior Prom: Ameritrade’s Attempt to Break away from Traditional Marketing
Ameritrade, an investment consultant, has an advertisement out, in a recent issue of Wired, which is comprised of a largely romantic silhouette. Featured at the top of the page is a scene straight from junior prom: a young man pinning a corsage on his date. Except it is not a corsage. Rather, it is a boutonniere with green undertones and made of hands which sits centered in the image. It’s a bit out of place for a female to be receiving a male prom accessory and even stranger that this accessory would be made of human hands. This uncomfortable feeling is strengthened through a disconnection between a young, romantic scene and the purpose of the advertisement,
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Interestingly, this green is only used in conjunction with consumer focused representations: the boutonniere offered toward the woman, the prom date’s dress, and the tagline which serves as the advertisement’s selling point. Ameritrade is subtly hinting at a financial growth through their services alongside a progression through life. The hard work and dedication to the professional life is supposed to lead to a life’s savings that will allow one to freely enjoy newfound free time and passions in retirement. This, inevitably, is an expression of the American Dream – wealth earned by the sweat and hard work of the individual. Ameritrade implies its “hand holding” will allow a consumer to more easily achieve this ideal. Even more fascinating, however, is that Ameritrade seems to reject that the American Dream has come, nor is it right around the corner. Workers are still encouraged to continue in their job and deposit money in these new “rollover IRAs”. Furthermore, to receive your “free” $600, Ameritrade requires that you are funding your account for at least a “twelve month duration”. They are even quick to note at the bottom that “risk” is involved and success is “not guaranteed”. Therefore, while sales may depend on whether the consumer “buys” into the American Dream, it becomes clear that Ameritrade rejects that such a notion can exist. In contrast, Ameritrade undercuts the advertisement’s allure and connection to
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