Two months ago and nearly 4,000 miles away, a United Kingdom weight loss company called Protein World produced an extensive amount of controversy over their newest advertisement when posted in the city’s public transit area.
The company’s newest line of weight loss supplements includes a protein powder that is supposed to be mixed with liquid beverages, a multivitamin, and general weight loss capsules. This three-product package which retails for $99.99 claims to, “help you lose weight, fast”, “boost metabolism”, “encourage lean and tones muscles” and is a “nutritious meal replacement”. In addition, this product is vegetarian, gluten free, soy free, Kosher, Halal and is Diabetic suited (Protein World, n.d.).
In the actual advertisement of the product below, the bright yellow background is particularly eye-catching, especially considering that the color of the bathing suit blends in with the background, and the image of the women’s body is in contrast. The woman’s body is also seen as a barrier between the texts “are you” and “beach body ready” implying an attempted comparison to that specific image, i.e., “are you” this body, or do you have this body. This text serves the audience of anyone who will, or would be using the city’s public transit. It appeals to people who might not be “beach body ready”, and urges those who aren’t to lose weight by taking this supplement. It also is persuasive enough to its audience by saying IF you take these pills, you will look like THIS model, i.e., it encourages people to look like this rather than what they currently look like.
Having said that, this advertisement generated very negative responses from the people of the United Kingdom, in which various reactions are listed below.