Compare And Contast: What Bike To Choose? Essay, Research Paper
“Which bike is best for me?” That is the question most motorcycle buyers would ask themselves. I have chosen three separate sportbike advertisements and analyzed their differences. Most motorcycle advertisements show and tell why the product should be bought. The advertisers portray the sportbikes in a unique style and the ads explain why their sportbike is superlative, and they use different techniques to illustrate their position. The ads are persuasive by the effective use of imagery, lighting, and catchy phrases.
Honda is a powerful and large corporation known for its excellence. In the motorcycle magazine, they place a two-page ad for their CBR 600F4. Honda has the funds to advertise conspicuously. This particular ad shows a rider in full gear on the CBR parallel to the ground as the sun shines on the front of the bike. This snapshot consumes the entire two pages and leaves little space for the background. The advertisement captures a great photograph of a street-legal sportbike in competition. However, it does not end with a fantastic picture. On the second page in the top center of the ad is a profile. The profile states the rider’s name, his age, occupation, and his current title, but the last item states, “Future Titles: How many would you like?” This statement clearly suggests if you own a Honda CBR 600F4, you have a world-class bike/performer. At the bottom of the two-page ad, the CBR has “seven AMA Supersport Championships,” and “more first-place finishes that anything in its class.” Next to those records, at the bottom left-hand corner of the advertisement, is Honda’s motorcycle logo, “Performance First”. This ad does a good job of persuading a buyer to attain the F4, since the buyer wants to think that he can ride a racebike on the street when, in fact, the fine print at the bottom of the ad says, “PLEASE READ OUR SAFETY ELSEWHERE IN THIS MAGAZINE. PROFESSIONAL RIDER SHOWN.” Just as in a cigarette ad, the dangers are in the fine print or on another page.
Unlike Honda, Suzuki is not as well known in the market as its counterpart, but in the motorcycle industry, Suzuki is as well respected as is Honda, if not more. Suzuki takes a different approach into persuading possible buyers. Instead of consuming two pages, Suzuki buys a full page. Unlike the Honda, they do not portray the bike as being ridden; yet, the bike is shown bare-naked and is outlined in a white glow with a bright yellow background. The GSX-R is shown having its body and muffler illuminated to show off the bike’s design. Here Suzuki has the motorcycle represented alone, asking the buyer to take it for a spin. The top of the page is titled, “The Soul of a Champion. Reborn,” testifying that it is the best sportbike once again. In addition, at the bottom of the ad, Suzuki has a small paragraph on the GSX-R declaring it to be shorter, narrower, more slippery, 30 pounds lighter, and more horsepower than before. The last sentence of the paragraph says, “Proof that, if you’re really good, your soul goes to a better place.” The advertisers try to demonstrate that being on the GSX-R is a whole other level of living. Or, alternatively, we can interpret this to mean that if you live a good life and die on a motorcycle, you get to go to heaven. This ad does not emphasize the rider as the Honda CBR ad. It focuses on the bike as a winner, and suggests that if people buy this bike, they can be a winner too. At the bottom of this advertisement, Suzuki also puts a disclaimer saying, “Suzuki firmly believes racing belongs in one place–the racetrack.”
Like the CBR’s ad, the Yamaha YZF R1’s ad is also two pages. This advertisement takes the style of Suzuki’s ad of an unoccupied bike, and it uses Honda’s representation of a rider dictating the R1 in the background. The ad has an off-center view of a bare R1 gleaming its midnight blue color with a white glow. The background of the ad is the same midnight blue as the bike in it is inscribed a huge depiction of a geared sportbiker leaning over with the Yamaha into a turn. On the foreground of the inscribed picture, it says, “It’ll be a cold day in hell when something tops the scorching performance of the revolutionary R1.” The quote goes in correlation with the deep blue aura of the ad. On the right hand side of the ad it uses improper English, “Bundle up”; their way of saying to buckle up. Under that it has listed that the R1 is lighter, sleeker, and meaner because it has over 150 improvements, and it quotes from Motorcycle Magazine that it is the “bike of the millennium.” Unlike the previous two ads, Yamaha does not focus that it has a certain number of championships, nor does it say it is a reborn champion; it does say that it is a bike that can never be beaten. Therefore, it makes potential buyers think it can be any bike on the street. Similar to both ads, the fine print says they have to ride safely and wear protective gear.
Each ad tries to associate with the consumer by using effective pictures. Honda depicts a rider in motion covering two pages; it lets the potential buyer identify with rider. Suzuki, on the other hand, shows a bike without a rider to make people want to have it for their own. Finally, Yamaha takes both ideas of Honda and Suzuki to let people connect with the rider and want to acquire the bike. Each sportbike advertisement proclaimed that it is the finest bike on the market. Honda lists the championships won, Suzuki illustrates that the champion has returned, and Yamaha declares hell will freeze before something can surpass it. These are all strategic techniques to convince someone that they will be indomitable on the street. However, this misleads people into thinking they can race on public roads, which is dangerous. The advertisers main goal is to make the bikes appeal to our competitive senses, which is easier to influence.