Journal of Intercultural Communication, issue 12, August 2006

Hanna-Kaisa Desavelle & Saku Mäkinen

Addressing the Consumer in Standardised Advertisements: Linguistic Cues in French and Finnish Technology Products’ Advertising Texts.


The complexity of the challenges in global marketing communications which concern technology products arise from e.g. geographical variations, trends in globalisation and the evolutionary changes of technologies. In response to this complex environment multinational companies need to find a balance between adaptation and standardisation to achieve effective advertising. We explore linguistic cues used to address the consumer in standardised advertisements of technology products in France and Finland. The advertising texts are studied with the theory of enunciation, which takes into account the communication situation and textual organisation. Furthermore, we elaborate what the linguistic cues imply as linguistic strategies in standardised advertising. The corpus indicates that, despite standardised product information and images, consumers are approached via dissimilar linguistic means in different cultural settings, revealing a differing relationship towards technology.

Keywords: theory of enunciation, advertising text, standardisation, linguistic strategies, France, Finland

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