The “Weasel Words” are often seen in advertisements to create a potential customer without making any specific statement. This protects the companies against the lawsuits as they are only responsible for the official meaning of the words they choose and not the meaning they want the customer to believe in. In the Ford magazine advertisement, there are several examples of weasel words. Firs of all, the slogan says, “Introducing the only way to get there”. The only way to get where? This is an example of unfinished words. It does not provide any information further, so the audience can make their own conclusions. This phrase does not have any specific meaning to it. The car on the image is shown in the off-road setting, therefore, the customer may think that “there” is somewhere where it is hard to get.
Next, the ad says that it is “The New Ford Expedition”. The word “new” is also a weasel word. It only means that something has been changed in the product. It does not necessarily mean that the change is beneficial for the customer. However, it may be misleading and it can make the customer believe that the “new” Ford is better than any previous version.
On the top of the advertisement, it says in small print, “It’ll get you there like nothing else.” This is a combination of different weasel words. First, again, “it’ll get you there” is an example of unfinished words. The customer still doesn’t know where it will get them. “Like” is another popular weasel word. It provides a comparison with something while not really giving any specific information about the product. And last, “nothing else” is unclear. Is the company comparing the “New Ford” with a different car? Or the previous Ford? Or the bicycle? This can also be considered as weasel words. To sum it up, the phrase “It’ll get you there like nothing else” does not mean anything at all. It appeals to the customer’s emotions and imagination and pushes them to certain conclusions.
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