A Wall Street Journal article highlights Thai commercials so emotional that people daring each other not to cry has become a "digital spectator sport." A YouTube description for one video reads, "You Too Will Cry After Watching This... 95% People Cry." The commercials have inspired videos of people watching them, trying not to cry. A video of "Deadlox" garnered more than 256,000 views.
Thanonchai Sornsriwichai creates short films (between 3 and 10 minutes) to sell insurance, phones, food, and other goods. The videos are mini-movies with a dramatic story. In "Silence of Love," a daughter with an angry father tries to commit suicide. The message is to "Remember to care for those who care for you"; in other words, buy life insurance.
With 27 million views, another ad for life insurance, "Unsung Hero," is Thanonchai's highest ranking.
Using pathos or emotional appeals to persuade is nothing new, but this video genre is gaining traction. Advertisers say these film shorts compete with TV ads and capitalize on social media. An executive at Ogilvy & Mather in Bangkok calls them "media events." Of course, videos about the videos increase the number of viewers, and tagging the no-cry challenge onto a film makes it go viral.
Describe the value of using pathos in a persuasive argument. What aspects do these films use effectively?
On the other hand, what are the risks? For example, could people feel duped at the end? How do advertisers avoid this potential reaction?