Abdullaeva C.B.
Abdullaeva C.B. THE LANGUAGE-GAME TECHNIQUES IN THE ENGLISH ADVERTISING DISCOURSE // Universum: филология и искусствоведение : электрон. научн. журн. 2022. 2(92). URL: (дата обращения: 06.07.2022).
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DOI - 10.32743/UniPhil.2022.92.2.13034



The article is devoted to the analysis of language-game in the English advertisement discourse. The article is based on English advertising materials. The notion of advertising is studied. The most general characteristics are revealed based on the analysis of advertising texts with examples. It is shown how the lexical peculiarities have an effect on the perception of advertising.


Статья посвящена анализу языковой игры в англоязычном рекламном дискурсе Статья основана на электронных ресурсах на английском языке. В статье анализируется понятие рекламы. Выявлены наиболее общие характеристики на основе анализа рекламных текстов с примерами. Показано, как лексические особенности влияют на восприятие рекламы.


Keywords: discourse, language-game, advertisement texts, slogan, occasionalism.

Ключевые слова: дискурс, языковая игра, рекламные тексты, слоган, окказионализм.


Modern advertising is a multidimensional phenomenon that attracts the attention of specialists in various fields of science: linguists, psychologists, cultural scientists, sociologists. The main product of advertising is an advertising text. The modern advertising text is characterized by increased expressiveness [Amiri 2007: 24]. Thus, the use of various linguistic means in the advertising text often entails the creation of certain game techniques. The methods of language game allow to achieve the fundamental principle of creating advertising texts: to achieve maximum expression in a minimal length of text. The language of advertising instantly reacts to the emergence of new ideas and events, and changes in any sphere of life are inevitably reflected in advertising texts. Multilevel linguistic means - phonetic, graphic, morphological, lexical, word-formation, etc. - are involved in creating the playful style of advertising. Almost all modern advertising texts are characterized by the use of various gaming techniques in all their diversity, which in itself is directly related to the essence of advertising, which is to attract the attention of the recipient. One of the common techniques of attracting attention and the impact of the advertising text are lexical techniques of language games.

The primary purpose of language play in an advertising text is to draw attention not to the product itself, but to the advertising message itself. The realization of this aim is significant because today the volume of advertising in all media is so high that it is no longer perceived by people's minds, let alone to isolate any individual messages from this massive flow. And the language game is designed to "catch" the attention of a person by its uniqueness, so that he would read the entire message to the end, and then it is not excluded that the purchase will be made. In advertising, a great value is the use of new words, as well as the non-standard use of already known. It also welcomes the unusual use of syntactic structures, phonetics, graphics, etc. In general, everything that will attract the attention of potential customers. The key phrase of an advertising text is a slogan. It is designed to attract attention; thanks to it the whole verbal range of an advertisement text is remembered well. The slogan as a carrier of the main advertising idea is a call to action (generalized imperative, expressed directly or indirectly), emotionally colored expression of positive emotions, appreciation of the advertised product. Advertising slogans should not be verbose because only a short dynamic text can call for any action.

English is an analytical language, that is, the meaning of a phrase, which in English is expressed through a change in the formal characteristics of words. The most common type of language game is lexical language means. In modern advertising, there is a predominant use of metonymy, metaphor, lexical repetition, allusion, and puns. It is worth noting that the pun is considered one of the main 29 techniques of language games in general, which is achieved through its effectiveness and humorous coloring. At the same time, an important factor influencing the effectiveness of a slogan is the stylistic origin of the words from which it is constructed. Advertising texts often use stylistic means of language, such as metaphor, metonymy, antithesis, irony, polysemy, zeugma, pun, epithet, oxymoron, as well as comparison, hyperbole, euphemism, periphrasis, and allusion. However, the most common are metaphor, lexical repetition, epithet, hyperbole, rhyme, allusion, and paraphrase [Isaeva 2011: 15].

Hyperbole is an excessive exaggeration of the feelings, meaning, size, beauty, etc., of the phenomenon being described. It can be considered a proven fact that the use of evaluative and expressive vocabulary can emphasize the qualities of the advertised product as much as possible, sometimes imposing on the reader a high opinion of it by the advertisers themselves.

An advertisement for Lancôme lipstick:

Luxurious colors. Versatile from classic creme to richest matte to the irresistible hint of sheen in new Matte Lustre. [5]

In this example, we see the repeated use of the adjectives ‘absolutely’ and the superlative degree ‘richest’. David Ogilvy warns against the use of superlative adjectives because they can call into question the plausibility of the information. However, we have noted the particularly frequent use of adjectives such as ‘absolutely’ and ‘best’ although this is undesirable [Kurganova 2014:24].

Word-formation game is one of the most interesting varieties of language play in the language of advertising. Despite the fact that it is well enough studied on the material of various genres, it continues to attract the attention of researchers.  The attractiveness of the word-formation game lies in the possibility of creating an occasionalism, whose semantics is built on a number of associations with the word or words based on which it was created, and which has a halo of novelty, which is primarily relying on the fact that a language unit is known or unknown to a native speaker, on its degree of use, on its inclusion in the active or passive vocabulary of the language.

Oh, Beautiful! GLOW GETTER! / Oh, beautiful! Brilliant! (advertisement for foundation and lip gloss). [6]

In this example, we can note a similar word formation. The combination "Glow getter" is an occasionalism and is built by analogy with the expression "go-getter," which indicates someone who is determined to succeed and who works hard, is sure to achieve his goal. One could describe such a person as a go-getter. The slogan "Glow getter" advertises a combination of products that help to achieve that alluring and radiant image, to become a "gogetter" in terms of beauty, as the verb "glow" means to shine. Thanks to these two products, it is possible to achieve a glowing effect. If we translate this slogan into Russian we get the following: one hundred percent radiant person, looking great. In this example, the linguistic function prevails, because a new linguistic unit "Glow getter" is formed.

Due to the fact that the audible appearance of an advertising message is the major factor of success with the recipient, on the phonetic level, marketers often use sound repetitions. They can be fully or partially consonant with the name of the advertised product, thus creating an easy-to-remember rhyme.

We should understand phonetic language game as a play on consonance, which has three implementation plans: audible, audio-graphic, and graphic.

Laugh attack? Don't hold back (we make bladder leaks like no big deal). / Actively laughing? Don't hold back.

This example illustrates the phenomenon of consonance, namely the repetition of the final consonants "ck". Also here you can see the rhyme attack - back. Thus, thanks to such means as consonance and rhyme, the advertising text attracts the attention of the target audience, because the slogan by these means immediately catches the eye and remains in memory for a long time. Here we can distinguish the expressive function, because with the help of this rhyme the advertisement influences the target audience, focusing attention on a socially significant situation, and thus encouraging the purchase of this product. Language game at the phonetic level is designed to affect the emotions of the recipient, to create a certain mood, to set the overall tone of the sound of the test, which is achieved through the use of such linguistic means as alliteration, consonance, rhyme and others.

The language game in the creation of an advertising slogan uses phonological means of expressiveness. Among the cases we have identified, the most common is the alliteration technique, which allows us to influence the recipient by means of his/her immersion into the euphonious space of the advertising text, bypassing its conscious processing. The expressive function prevails here, as the central element is the form of the text, which forces the recipient to pay attention to itself and stimulates to certain actions. The language game at the graphic level is characterized by shortness, informativeness and emphasis on the expressiveness of the advertising slogan. 

This technique is considered one of the most effective, because thanks to the explicit advertising titles and slogans, highlighting a group of words in color or font that differs in size and color from the main text, people react to texts faster, at a subconscious level pay attention to the advertising, which stopped the eye. The graphic level of language game is quite often referred to in the creation of advertising because of its brightness, eye-catching, noticeable to the visual perception. Here, such techniques as typography, color separation and violation of linguistic norms prevail. Because of its compactness (compressive function), that is, the combination of graphic and linguistic means together, this level effectively communicates information about the advertised product and contributes to its longer retention in memory. In addition, a large number of other functions stand out, which characterizes this level of language game as multifunctional. Advertising slogans very often contain question sentences, which can serve various functions: serve as a question itself, encourage reflection, emphasize the necessary idea, express a supposition, be an emotional response to the situation, etc, for instance, why do you need extra weight on your shoulders? Tired of dandruff? (Head & Shoulders shampoo); Tired of gout? and etc.

 In advertising slogans are often given different numbers, the percentage content of a substance in the product, the actual data, which give the advertising pseudoscientific and informative. Language games are widely used in the creation of advertising slogans with humorous overtones, because this type of advertising is considered more attractive to the consumer and forces him to show his linguistic guesswork to discover the explicit meaning.



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  2. Isaeva L.V. YAzyikovaya igra v polikodovom reklamnom tekste: avtoref. diss.... kand. filol. nauk // L. V. Isaeva. – Tver, 2011. – pp.15-17.
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  4. Kurganova E.B. Igrovoy aspekt v sovremennom reklamnom tekste: avtoref. dis. ... kand. filol.nauk // E. B. Kurganova. – Voronej, 2004. – pp. 24 - 26.
  5. Ковалева Ю.С. Лингвистические особенности рекламных текстов современного английского языка [Электронный ресурс] // Белгородский государственный университет. URL: nogo-angliyskogo-yazyka-5c1a5efe7966e104f6f85610
Информация об авторах

Head of department, “Intercultural communication and tourism” department TSUULL, Uzbekistan, Tashkent

заведующая кафедрой, "Межкультурная коммуникация и туризм" ТГУЛЛ, Uzbekistan, Tashkent

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