The iPhone 6s Timer commercial centers the well-known puppet from Sesame Street, Cookie Monster, in the kitchen baking cookies. He uses the iPhone’s newest feature, hands-free Siri, to set a timer for the cookies to bake. He also uses the feature to play music and continue to wait for the cookies to bake. That is the general commercial, but when you break it down, you can see there are several tools of persuasion in it.
Cookie Monster is a Muppet on the well-known children’s television show Sesame Street. He is very famous for loving cookies and has been extremely popular since 1970. Apple used Cookie Monster as tool to create nostalgia and create a bond between a classic character to new technology. This also expresses what the primary demographic is, which is adults in their 30s.
This commercial does not focus on factual information about this new feature on the iPhone, but demonstrates it using an emotional factor by triggering memories the target demographic and comedy to help the audience enjoy watching it. The new feature of hands-free voice command being used by a characterbrings a classic feeling with new technology showing that the older generation can use brand new devices as well.
Referring to Rank’s model, Apple uses the strategy of intensifying their own good points by showing how useful one of their then new iPhone’s newest feature is. By associating their feature with Cookie Monster, they drew in a large audience and captured the attention of the consumer. They also showed the feature being used for two different tasks, showing repetition of an action to drive the purpose of the feature to the consumer.
The personification of a puppet character making cookies is a symbol that you can relate to the average consumer’s activities. Making cookies is a social norm and having a beloved character doing this plays on the ethos tool, letting the consumer feel an emotional connection to the agent. Throughout the commercial, Cookie Monster does relatable actions to connect with audience. Those who have baked cookies have been impatient when waiting for them to finish. Also, when making cookies it can be a messy process so the feature solves the problem of touching your phone to start a timer. Not only does the character’s known love for cookies evoke a memory in the consumer, but creates a scenario where the consumer see the product as useful.
Time in a Bottle by Jim Croce is a nonverbal symbol also used in the commercial. The song is a Top 40 classic from 1973 and can be high recognized by the target demographic. It also as used as a comedic reference to the Cookie Monster using this song on his “waiting playlist” in the commercial. The song is about time and has a very solemn and melancholy tone which gives the audience a feeling that Cookie Monster has been waiting for a long time. As the audience sees that he has only been waiting for fifty seconds, it is a comedic moment once again.
The symbols used in the commercial affects the text in a positive way. As I previously stated, using tools like nostalgia to touch on the emotions of the consumer brings a light and positive image on the product and what it stands for. Using positive cultural references helps brighten the image of the product. You can see past the product being expensive or excessive because of how simple the commercial is.
Overall, the commercial has all the factors of being persuasive. Apple is well-known company, with millions of devices sold. Not only do they market the latest technology, but they use factors like relatable situations and characters to draw consumers in. The iPhone 6s is a relatively new product and the feature has never been done before on their old iPhones. With this commercial, you can see how the new feature is easy to use and helpful, while also enjoying the lighthearted feel of the famous commercial.