Wanqi Huang

Huang 5





ChristmasShopping and Family Time

Thearticles uses ethos, logos and pathos to prove to the reader theimportance of parents supporting family events to shopping for toys.Ethos helped the author to analyze the impacts of the ad from theIKEA management’s view. Equally, the author used pathos to convinceparents to spend time for their families as a way of increasinghappiness. The essay explores how IKEA ad used ethos and pathos toreveal the fundamental need of family life as children wrote lettersto their parents requesting for more time together to experiencehappiness.

Theadvert showsa director asking some kids to write down what they want forChristmas some of them require a guitar or a game. Then, thedirector asks them to write down what they want from their parents.The children respond by writing down that they hope to spend moretime with parents at home. Children want to have dinner together athome while parents are away shopping for Christmas, thus forgettingthe fundamental role of family life. The parents smiled and cried asthey read the letter from their children. The ad attracts audiencesince the director asks children to write a letter to their parents.Alford uses quotes, statements, and arguments from the company’s adto argue for the position of IKEA concerning family life. This adargues that parents should spend more time for their children. TheSpain IKEA ad uses emotional affection to influence the shoppers notonly to purchase products for Christmas, but to consider spendingmore time for the family. It is very good to show IKEA does not onlythink to show their products and brand, but also think about thehappiness of families. IKEA also sees the condition of the reality,and know what customers’ needs. Thus, IKEA is a matured companydoing business with an intent to care for children and family needs.

Aduses logos to argue that IKEA’s “The Other Letter”advertisement attracts the attention of the Spanish people, which isover eight million views (Alford 1). The author argues that IKEA’sadvertisement is creative in considering the essence of keepingfamily needs of their customers as a top priority. The author provesthat the company used logos to develop the production of the “TheOther Letter” to satisfy the needs of young children. Indeed, it istrue that all families need time together to have more interactions.The ad is logically related to the children miss due to absence ofparents. They want their parents to spend more time with them duringthe Christmas. Beside, IKEA’s management asserts that the intentionof the ad was to convince the public to adopt a different way ofthinking that created the ideal family life in Spain. It is a specialway to persuade the audience to like IKEA. Ethos is used to createcredibility of the ad’s argument and it is a very good way topersuade the audience to think positive on IKEA (Hansen 6).

Ethosuses the view of customers and management of IKEA to assess how theyspend time with their families. The company’s new strategy ofappreciating their customer’s families creates a positive ratingand approval among children and parents (Jostand Olmsted 210).The statement by manager, Moro reveals the ethos the company uses toengage the customers to think positively about IKEA, “wespend millions on presents, but we don’t spend enough time with ourchildren. Then we pay with our guilt by buying more stuff”(Alford 1). Alford used quotes as an ethical appeal by the managementteam’s statements sounds more trust-worthy to the readers (Hansen7). Therefore, the technique of ethos is used by Alford to make thearticle more acceptable to the audience and IKEA customers.

Alfordused the pathos to advance the argument about the success of IKEA inthe advertisement industry (Jostand Olmsted 223).Every family shows the negative effects of parents being absent fromthe dinner table. On the contrary, the author notes that IKEA’sgoal is to create a happy family. Thus, whenever parents spend moretime with children, that would be the best sign for family happiness.Pathos reminds parents who avoid spending time with their familiesthat they cause agony to young children. Instead, the pathos is usedto assert that parents have the emotional responsibility to get homeearlier to talk with their children, besides buying toys. Thus, thead used the emotional side of the argument to perssuade the audienceto consider their family happiness and presence as a responsibility(Hansen 9).

Theauthor uses an objective tone by the article’s discussion is notdetermined by personal feelings. Instead, the author analyzed theimpacts of the IKEA advertisement objectively to inform the customersand the reader. “AtChristmas, we spend a lot of time consuming and buying instead ofspending time with people we love, especially our kids” (Alford 1).The author quotes IKEA statements to assert the obligation of parentsto children besides purchasing stuff, “Tell us you help familiescreate loving homes where they can be together” (Alford 1). Thestatements show how IKEA care about all the families. Similarly, thead’s theme used the irony of business advertisement to create apositive reinforcement on customers. Ironically,the ad asserts that IKEA prefers to see families happier togetherthan spending all the time for purchase products from their stores.Everyoneexpects IKEA to advertise for their products, ironically, they informparents to cut the shopping time and spend more with their families.Similarly, the ad’s message is quite surprising since no oneexpects IKEA to spend money to advertise for family happiness inSpain. Therefore, the ad come out as a surprise to many Spanishcustomers, who are used to being bombarded with ads soliciting formore purchases that translate to more time spent shopping forChristmas.

Inconclusion, Alford used pathos, logos, and ethos to convince thereader that IKEA cares about family and the happiness of children.Logos is used to highlight the reasons that support the IKEA’smission of using the media, which attract attention over 8 millionpeople. The ad gives people the positive side. Alford used IKEAmanagement’s quotes and statements to add credibility to the ad.Moreover, emotional appeal is used to remind parents to becomeresponsible in determining their children’s happiness. Similarly,it is ironical that a business organization can care for family lifeas a way of preserving the market resource. Lastly, the ad surprisedmany millions of viewers who wondered at how a for-profit companywould advertise something outside its business jurisdiction.


Alford,Emily. IKEASpain`s Christmas Ad Creates Buzz Without Being Pushy. Clickz.com,2014. Web. (3 Mar. 2015).

Hansen,Brett. Ethos, Pathos, Logos, and the NTSB. IowaState University,2003. Web.

Jost,Walter and Wendy Olmsted. ACompanion to Rhetoric and Rhetorical Criticism.Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2004. Print.

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