If you want to give the IELTS exam, then strengthening your vocabulary is the first step. A good vocabulary will help you achieve high scores in the IELTS speaking sections. Every year IDP comes up with the latest topics to prepare its questions. Advertisement is one of the latest categories and this blog will help you build your vocabulary.
A huge variety of vocabulary words related to this topic can be complex. Using such words in the IELTS exam will increase your chances of showcasing your vocabulary and making a good impression on your IELTS examiner! This blog will take you through some of the most important Advertisement Vocabulary IELTS.
IELTS Speaking Vocabulary: Advertisement
Below is the list of advertising-related vocabulary that can help you frame your answers better and get a good IELTS band score.
Billboards: These are huge signboards often placed on roads or at stadiums to advertise brands.
Example: Sabreena saw her favourite celebrity advertising her favourite smartphone on a billboard just outside Arizona.
TV Commercials: Short films on TVs that are advertising a product. It is one of the most persuasive forms of advertising.
Example: Rohan got his first job as an actor in Apple’s TV commercial.
Magazine Ads: Putting up small posts on a magazine to advertise a particular product. These ads are very specific and only target a particular population.
Example: Vogue magazines fashion ads are some of the most eye-catching ads out there.
Radio Advertising: This type of advertising focuses only on a specific group in the target audience – the people who listen to radio stations.
Example: Given how people hardly ever not connect their car’s Bluetooth to their own phones, radio advertising is almost dead in today’s world.
Email Advertising: Advertising your product or service by sending direct emails to your prospective customer is email advertising. It is one of the widely used and one of the most cost-effective ways of advertising today. However, the chances of your mailer ending up in junk mail are also high, as people receive over 100 email ads every day.
Example: Samsung came up with a new feature in its Galaxy J8 smartphone and took to email advertising to sell it to its customer base.
Flyers: They are small leaflets printed and handed out to customers in person. Although very effective, they are costly and often difficult to execute.
Example: Rita is working on making some flyers for informing people about the end-of-season sale in her store in the Central Market.
Internet Pop-Ups: These small advertisements can often be spotted on many blogs and other social media platforms. Although attention-grabbing, they can sometimes annoy the customer.
Example: Raj strongly expressed his dislike towards new-age advertising tools like internet pop-ups in the meeting.
Tantalising: Something that creates excitement by subtle teasing.
Example: Advertisers go bold and make use of tantalising visuals to entice their consumers.
Classified Ads: These ads are displayed in newspapers. They are hardly used these days for selling products and services.
Example: Sumita’s family wanted her to find a suitable groom, so they put out a matrimonial ad in the classified ads section of ABC Times.
Cold Calling: Here, salespersons reach out to their first-time customers through telemarketing or door-to-door visits. This way of advertising is called cold calling.
Example: With churning out huge sales figures, Raman has established himself as the king of cold calling in his office.
Jingle: The music that often accompanies any commercial. This can be simply a tune or even a full-fledged song with lyrics.
Example: In a survey conducted by Advanced School of Advertising, a team of 4 young advertisers found out that people are more likely to buy a product if they like the jingle of the advert.
Bombard: To attack someone continuously.
Example: Smitha complained to the customer care network about being bombarded with sales calls throughout the day.
Brand Awareness: To acquaint a customer with a brand, its product, and its core values.
Example: Almost all advertisements on social media aim to increase brand awareness rather than make a sale.
Product Placement: The appearance of a particular product or a brand in TV or films to give exposure to it.
Example: Many brands become sponsors for films in the hopes of getting substantial product placement that will raise brand awareness and the aspiration to buy.
Buying Power: It refers to the financial capacity of a person to buy something.
Example: The first step of making an advertising strategy is to research the prospective audience’s buying power to be then able to create ads that appeal to them.
IELTS Speaking Sample: Advertisement
IELTS speaking part 1
Examiner: Do you remember any adverts you saw when you were younger?
Lena: Oh certainly! I remember a dollhouse that was featured for quite some time on television but I also remember commercials for adult products like bath soap or beer. I can’t really say what was so memorable about these commercials – perhaps the imagery or the jingle, but years later I most definitely remember them.
Examiner: Do you often buy things after seeing an advert?
Sonya: Sometimes I do, yes. If I believe that a product satisfies a particular need I have, then I may purchase it. Sometimes, in the case of food, the products displayed are so tantalizing that you may try the product just to see if it lives up to its hype.
Examiner: Do you like it when celebrities advertise products?
Sandeep: No, actually I don’t. I think celebrity endorsements cheapen the celebrity and insult the public’s intelligence. It’s fairly obvious that the celebrity is advertising the product only to earn a large amount of money and quite frankly, even if he or she does use the product, that does not automatically mean the product is right for me or will make me more similar to the celebrity.
What is even worse than celebrity endorsements is when you see product placements in movies. There have been times when a soft drink was so prominently displayed on the screen that it was laughable. These types of ads repel me rather than attract me.
IELTS speaking part 2
Describe an advert you saw recently. You should say:
- What the product/ service was
- Where you saw it
- How was the product/ advertised
- And how you felt about it
Leyla: To be honest, I don’t watch a lot of television although it is on in my house rather often. Lately, I have repeatedly heard adverts for a brand of cheese available in my country. I say I ”heard” them because it was the music that has stuck out in my mind. The commercial uses a folk song throughout the commercial that I find rather grating.
It’s the kind of jingle – and commercial that makes me want to change the channel immediately!!! However, I think that this kind of advertising is very effective; if you like the song then you may be more inclined to purchase the product. If though you are like me and don’t like the song, then the ad is still successful because it has gotten my attention!
Examiner: Do you think advertising will change in the future?
Shahla: I think advertising is probably one of the fastest changing industries today. It must always adapt and find new ways of getting the attention of potential customers without turning them off. I think several years ago we could have in no way imagined how important Youtube or Facebook would be for advertisers so I believe in the future we will see more changes as more apps and sites become popular.
Examiner: How is advertising different now in relation to the past?
Minnie: Advertising in the past relied more heavily on print, like magazines, newspapers and billboards. I can’t recall the last time I noticed a billboard while driving. Radio too is less important and maybe a great medium for local products and services. I believe TV ads remain very popular but advertising on the internet has really taken over. We are bombarded with so many adverts online that I don’t think we even notice them anymore.
Examiner: Some people think it is unethical to advertise to children. Do you agree?
Rana: Apparently, in some countries children are a very powerful market with considerable buying power! So, it only makes sense that advertisers would want to advertise to them. However, this must be done extremely carefully. In my country there are laws forbidding advertisers from advertising toys when cartoons are playing.
In my husband’s country though it is a free-for-all where commercials during Saturday morning cartoons promote toys, unhealthy snacks, theme parks – anything and everything that a child could – and undoubtedly does- ask for! Children are very impressionable so yes, it does seem unethical although with such financial strength I can understand why advertisers are tempted.
Vocabulary list for advertising topic:
- Commercials: an advert on tv or radio
- Imagery: visual images
- Tantalizing: something that creates desire and excitement
- Live up to its hype: when something is as good as you expected it to be
- Product placement: a practice in movies or tv shows when a product or its brand name appear on screen visibly in order to gain exposure
- Celebrity endorsement: when a famous person advertises a product by saying he or she uses it
- Grating: describes sounds that are annoying
- Inclined to purchase: likely to buy
- Potential customers: people who might possibly buy your product
- Turn someone off: to make someone uninterested in something
- Pop-ups: advertisements that suddenly appear on a computer or device screen.
- Subconscious: the part of the brain that sees, hears or remembers things that you do not actively remember
- Subliminal: describes something that can influence the subconscious mind without the conscious mind realizing it
- Billboards: a large outdoor board, usually alongside large roads, used to display an ad
- Flyer: a small paper advertising a product, business or event
- Website traffic: the internet users who visit a website
- Brand awareness: when customers recognize or remember a brand and its qualities
- Jingle: music that accompanies commercials
- Telemarketing: the marketing of good or services over the phone
- Bombard: attack continuously
- Buying power: the money someone has to buy things
- Free-for-all: a situation with no rules, limits or restrictions
- Impressionable: describes a person who is easily influenced
IELTS speaking part 3
1. What makes an advertisement effective?
Answer: There are a number of facts that makes an advertisement effective. To begin with, the advertisement on a particular product has to be absolutely relevant and specific on its message while also describing at the same time what exactly set the product apart from others in terms of its benefits. Besides, for an advertisement to be effective, the language or the wording has to be unique to the target audience, based on their age, gender, race, culture, religion and geographic location. Finally, the advertisement should include a clear “call for action” such as asking to buy the product or contact.
2. What is the purpose of advertising?
Answer: For a given market segment, there are six main purposes of an advertisement, which include informing the consumers about a certain product and convince customers, changing the belief about a certain brand, enhance the image of the company, point out and create a need for products or services, generating new direct sales and announce new products and programs. Some advertisements may also want to demonstrate new uses for established products and send a reminder to use an existing product.
3. How have advertisements changed since you were a child?
Answer: Advertisements have changed significantly over the years since I was a child. For a starter, when I was a child, if I remember correctly, there were only radio, TV and print media to show us the advertisements, but today there are computers, smartphones, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram also on which advertisements are being displayed continuously. We can also see billboards, neon signs, and other vibrant and visually captivating printed designs, that are placed at strategic locations with high volumes of human traffic, which were not seen when I was a child.
4. What are the advantages and disadvantages of advertising?
Answer: The main advantage of advertising is that they allow us to learn about new products and services that we may need badly. Advertising also helps us compare among different kinds of products, in terms of their costs and qualities, so that we can make an informed decision when making a purchase.
The main disadvantage of advertising that I think of is that they increase the cost of the products because it costs to advertise and the companies pass those advertising cost to be picked up by the customers. They sometimes mislead the customers because not all the products, that are advertised, are good for them.
5. Do you think that advertisements should be strictly regulated?
Answer: Yes, I do think that advertisement should be strictly regulated because, without it, misleading information on the products will keep deceiving the customers into buying wrong and defected products. Besides, without strict regulation, bigger companies will always have undue advantages, because of their higher budget for advertisements, over the smaller and local manufacturers/companies even though the products of “bigger” companies are of inferior quality to those of smaller companies. In other words, advertisement kills competition and gives larger companies an unfair advantage over smaller companies.
6. How important is it for advertisers to tell the whole truth in advertisements?
Answer: It is absolutely important for advertisers to tell the whole truth in advertisements for trust issues. Advertisers should tell customers exactly what they are buying or getting because if there is a discrepancy between the expectation of the customers and what the advertisers advertise, then the trust would be lost, and the customers most likely would never come back to buy the same products again in the future. Besides, some customers may also go as far as “suing” the company, if they think that they are lied to, which certainly is not good for the lasting image of a company.
IELTS Speaking Practice: Advertisement
You may be asked questions about advertising in your country. Read the following IELTS-style questions and answers below and pay attention to the phrases in bold. Use the ‘Definitions’ section at the bottom of the page to check the meaning of any phrases you don’t understand.
Part 1-style questions
Examiner: Are there any TV channels in your country that don’t have adverts?
Loraine: No … they’re all commercial channels and show adverts all day long … too many really … and there’s also a lot of product placement going on … especially in soap operas where they place an item just behind the actors.
Examiner: Do you enjoy watching adverts on TV?
Karin: No … not really … I hate commercial breaks during a film … it really spoils the flow … and during prime time viewing they seem to squeeze even more ads in than usual … celebrity endorsements also get on my nerves … everyone knows they’re only doing it because they’re getting paid.
Examiner: What are the best ways for ordinary people to advertise something they want to sell in your country?
Marianne: The simplest way is to place an advert in something like the classified ads section of a local paper … or there’s the Internet of course … there are lots of sites like eBay where you can buy and sell things online.
Part 2-style task
Describe an advert you once saw that was very effective. You should say
- where this advert appeared
- when you saw it
- what it was advertising
and say why you thought it was so effective.
Max: OK … well this was about 4 years ago … I was looking for some software to create videos … one day I got an email from a mailing list I’d signed up to … there was a link in it to a press release … a company had written something about a new product that was similar to what I was looking for … at the end of the press release there was a link to the sales page … I hadn’t heard of the company but I was interested and clicked the link to the ad …. what caught my attention immediately were the number of testimonials from people who had bought the software … I think testimonials are like the online equivalent of word of mouth advertising and are really persuasive … anyway … when I got to the bottom of the page there was a great big call to action button inviting me to buy … I was totally persuaded and ended up making a purchase … what made it so effective I think was the power of those testimonials … they’d been written by people very much like me … they’d had a need and the software had obviously turned out to be just what they were looking for … when you think that this was a newish company they wouldn’t have had any brand awareness at all … they probably wouldn’t have had much of a budget for advertising … obviously, you wouldn’t advertise a product like this through the mass media on TV … they probably didn’t even have an advertising agency to support them …and yet they’d managed to create a great deal of brand loyalty from previous customers … I think that was really effective.
Part 3-style questions
Examiner: What is it that makes an advert effective?
Spencer: Well … when a company launches a product they have to consider the Internet … especially how it can be used to spread the word on social media … so in this context, a video that goes viral is probably the most effective type of advert you could make.
Examiner: What are the advantages to companies of advertising on the Internet rather than TV?
Stelios: I’d imagine the main advantage is you can reach your target audience much more effectively … if you bring out a niche product for example or you have a tight advertising budget … you can advertise on particular sites that the people you want to reach visit … that’s not something you can do on TV.
Examiner: What things do advertising companies do that might give it a bad name?
Raol: For me, the most irritating is cold calling … we must get two or three of these every day at work … then there’s junk mail that gets posted through the letterbox and of course the online equivalent of this … spam emails … I think it’s this kind of advertising that tends to annoy people.
advertising agency: a company that creates adverts for other companies
advertising budget: the amount of money a company decides to spend on advertising
brand awareness: how well people know a particular brand
brand loyalty: the degree to which people continue to buy from the same brand or company
buy and sell: often used to refer to the buying and selling of items between individuals
call to action: something that encourages someone to take a particular action, such as making a purchase or clicking a link on a website
celebrity endorsement: to have a well-known person promote a product
classified ads: small advertisements often put in a newspaper or magazine by individuals
to cold call: to call someone with the aim of selling something without them asking you to do so
commercial break: the short period during TV programmes when advertisements are shown
commercial channel: TV channels that make money from showing advertisements
to go viral: to quickly become extremely popular on the Internet through social media
junk mail: unwanted promotional leaflets and letters
to launch a product: to introduce a new product
mailing list: a list of names and contact details used by a company to send information and advertisements
mass media: large media outlets like TV, newspapers and magazines
niche product: a product that is aimed at a distinct group of people
to place an advert: to put an advert somewhere
press release: something written by a company for newspapers and magazines and websites to share and publish
prime time: the time during the viewing schedule when most people watch TV or listen to a broadcast
product placement: to advertise a product by using it as a prop in a TV show or film
sales page: a page specifically used to promote a product or service
to show adverts: to display adverts on TV
social media: websites that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking.
spam email: unwanted, promotional email
target audience: the people a company want to sell their product or service to
word of mouth: recommendations made by individuals to other individuals about a product of service
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