Skip to main content
  1. News
  2. Business & Finance
  3. Marketing & PR

The Art of Subliminal Advertising

See also

"I see what you did there."

When a brand puts something out there that has a bit of a wink to it, consumers have a chance to get in on the joke. Sometimes, however, things are so clever that one wonders if the brand intended such a connection to be made...and those who get said ├╝ber-clever connection are left wondering whether it was intentional or serendipitous.

The Aleve tie in to hit-TV game show Jeopardy is a great example. Take a look at this photo featuring New Jersey resident Jason Keller at the end of one of his many Jeopardy victories. The smiling Keller adds $25,000 to his growing pot and gets to stay for another try at winning even more money. What about the other two contestants? The connection from Aleve at first seems obvious: the analgesic is relieving their pain by providing some token "loser money." But what else do you notice?

This isn't just any pain reliever sponsoring Alex Trebek's forum for geniuses and trivia masters. There is some subliminal reinforcement of the "Aleve" brandname. The winner gets to stay. Each loser must, ahem, leave. "I leave." "Aleve." Now look at the photo again, from left to right: I stay (to compete again), I leave (with dashed dreams), I leave (having to face friends and relatives after an abysmal performance).

Did Aleve intend this subtle and even comical brand reinforcement? Or is this just a "happy accident" waiting to be discovered by some viewers? Perhaps the brand will provide the answer to this post.

Advertisement

News

  • Ukraine
    Ukrainians have photo evidence that connect Russian soldiers to unrest in the country
    Video
    Watch Video
  • Drone strikes in Yemen
    An estimated 65 al-Qaeda militants were killed in drone strikes over the weekend
    World News
  • FBI investigates stowaway
    After a teen snuck into a plane's landing gear, the FBI will reevaluate airport security
    Headlines
  • American wins Boston Marathon
    Meb Keflezighi becomes the first American to win the Boston Marathon in decades
    Sports
  • Search for MH370
    As the search for MH370 in the ocean goes dim, crews may shift the search area yet again
    Headlines
  • Ferry disaster claims over 100 lives
    The death toll for the South Korean ferry disaster rises above 100
    Video
    Watch Video

User login

Log in
Sign in with your email and password. Or reset your password.
Write for us
Interested in becoming an Examiner and sharing your experience and passion? We're always looking for quality writers. Find out more about Examiner.com and apply today!