Semiotic and Cultural Analysis of English and Persian Advertising Slogans

Document Type: Original Article


1 no affiliation

2 Department of English Language and Literature, Islamic Azad University, Roudehen Branch, Roudehen, Iran.


The scopes of this research were to analyze the semiotic and cultural aspects of 30 English and Persian advertising slogans of various brands and also to reveal the functions of advertising elements used in the advertising teasers. The slogans were sampled for the analysis on the random basis from the internet sources. The writer used descriptive qualitative method to describe and analyze the semiotic elements; objects; verbal and nonverbal dimensions of advertisements. The semiotic model used in this analysis was Charles Sanders Peirce’s semiotic framework. The researcher identified the frequency of cultural and advertising elements used in the advertising slogans in order to illustrate the techniques used by the companies. The findings of the present research indicated that among the advertising elements, shots, color, and music were used more in the 15 English advertising teasers, but in 15 Persian advertising teasers, shots and color were used more than the other advertising elements. In addition, the functions of semiotic and cultural elements in advertising are as follows: they convey the messages more vividly and comprehensively, facilitate the communication between the advertisers and audiences, indicate the truths and facts in a different way, evoke the awareness and conscience of people in order to help others, convey a piece of information about the advertisement, make reference to a concrete or imaginary reality associated with the values of the advertised product or service, and build a bridge for social groups and various communities.


Atkin, A. Peirce’s Theory of Signs. E. N. Zalta (Ed.). Metaphysics Research Lab, Stanford University: USA, 2013.

Barthes, R. (1972/1957). Mythologies.(Annett Lavers, Trans.). New York: The Noonday Press.

Barthes, R. (). Image Music Text. (S. Heath, Trans.). London: Fontana Press, 1977.

Beasley, R., & Danesi, M. Persuasive Signs: The Semiotics of Advertising. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 2002.

Benoist, L. Semne, simboluri şi mituri. Bucuresti: Humanitas Publishing, 1995.

Combe, I., Crowther, D. & Greenland, S. The Semiology of Changing Brand Image. The Journal of Research in Marketing And Entrepreneurship, Vol. 5, No. 1, 2003: pp. 1-24.

Cook, G. The Discourse of Advertising. London and New York: Routledge, 2001.

DharmaKeerthi Sri Ranjan, G. D. Science of Semiotic Usage in Advertisements and Consumer‘s Perception. Journal of American Science, Vol. 2, No. 6, 2010: pp. 6-11.

Džanić, M. The semiotics of contemporary advertising messages: Decoding visuals. The journal of Original scientific article, Vol. 14, No. 2-3, 2013: pp. 475-485.

Huron, D. An Analytic Paradigm. Journal of Music in Advertising, Vol. 4, No. 73, 1989: pp. 557-574.

Impactbnd. The Psychological Meaning of Shapes in Logo Design. 2017. Retrieved from

Kress, R., & Leeuwen, V. Reading Images: The Grammar of Visual Design. London: Routledge, 2006.

Kvibe Productions. How to Use the Camera to Convey Emotion on Your Film & Video Productions. 2015. Retrieved from

Najafian, M. The Words behind Images: A Critical Social Semiotic Approach toward Analyzing Advertising. International Journal of Linguistics, Vol. 3, No. 1, 2011: pp. 1-21.

Peirce, Ch. S. Collected Papers. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1958.

Peirce, Ch. S. Collected Papers. Ch. Hartshorne,P. Weiss, & A. W. Burks (Eds.). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1931.

Peirce, Ch. S. Semiotics and significs: the correspondence between Charles S. Peirce and Lady Victoria Welby. Hardwick C.S. (Ed.). Indiana University Press, 1977.

Petrovicia, I. Aspects of Symbolic Communications in Online Advertising. Journal of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Vol. 149, 2014: pp. 719 – 723. 

Pui Yue, N. An Analysis on the Effectiveness of Music in Advertising Towards Consumers‘Buying Behavior (Bachelor Thesis, University of Tunku Abdul Rahman, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia), 2011. Retrieved from

Rodríguez, A. P., & Arcos, I.R. Intersemiotic Translation and Ideology: the Re-presentation of the Narrative of Women as Sexual Predators in Printed Advertising Aimed at Women. International Journal of Language and Linguistics, Vol. 2, No. 3, 2015: pp. 117-128.

Saren, M., Maclaran, P., Goulding, C., Elliott, R., Shankar, A., & Catterall, M. Critical Marketing. Defining the Field. Oxford: Elsevier, 2007.

Saussure, F. De. ([1916] 1974). General Course in Linguistics. (Wade Baskin, Trans.). New York: The philosophical Library.

Saussure, F. De. Course in General Linguistics. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1966.

Sebeok, T. A. Contributions to the Doctrine of Signs. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1976.

Silverman, K. The Subject of Semiotics. New York: Oxford University Press, 1983.

Thompson, R. & Bowen, C. J. Grammar of the Shot (2nd ed.). Amsterdam: Focal Press, 2009.