Publication Details

Rossiter, J. R., Langner, T. & Ang, L. (2003). Visual creativity in advertising: a functional typology. In R. Kennedy (Eds.), Proceedings of the Australian and New Zealand Marketing Academy Conference (pp. 105-113). Adelaide, Australia: Australian and New Zealand Marketing Academy.


There are many ways in which the visuals of an advertisement can be made "creative." In this article, we propose a new typology of visual creative ideas. The typology is functlonal in that the first type, literal product or user visuals, which are "noncreative" in the usual sense gain selective attention, by a product category-involved audience. The other three types, in contrast, are "creative" and can force reflexive attention among low-involved audiences. These are called pure attention getters, including the innate erotic, baby, and direct-gaze schemas, and the learned shock, celebrity, and culture-icon and subculture-icon schemas; distortional attention getters, including distortions of object design, function, and relation; and visual conveyors, the last including brand awareness conveyors, functional benefit conveyors, and emotional benefit conveyors. In the presentation, we show print advertisements from around the world that exemplify the types.