Intercultural studies 

ANG 160 Fall 2005


Eastern townships



Quebec regions


Important people/Theories


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Biculturalism used in advertisements

         (by David Drapeau)

         Advertising and publicity are everywhere in our lives in many forms: in newspapers, TV, radio and even signs on the sides of a road. But this publicity needs to be tested on a small scale before it actually reaches bigger audience. To do these tests, advertisers need to have a sample  population, and with the cultural diversity, they also need to have an idea of how multiple cultures will accept and react to their creations. With the biculturalism that exist in the Eastern Townships, advertisers are attracted to do this testing in the region. But let us see first how we developed this biculturalism.


          The Eastern Townships was first built by Loyalists from the United States. Those newcomers fled the War of Independence and brought with them their culture and their language. In 1840, the Eastern Townships was two-thirds anglophone and their numbers  started to decline since that time. This decline was caused by a migration of francophones to the region searching for opportunity and work during an economical crisis. But still today anglophones are an important part of the region, even though about 90% of the population of the Eastern Townships noe speak French. The word township itself comes from the way the Loyalists divided the land. In the french part of Quebec, we use the word ‘rang.   Due to by our relative closeness to the United-States, Americanization also brought it’s influence on culture and media in the region caused. After World War II, the ''American Dream'' begun to spread in our country and in our province and the United States continued to influence both our English and French cultures.


            Advertisers are aware of this thus use the Townships to research and test their publicity.  In this domain (like in every media, but mostly in advertising), one of the most important parts of the process of developing a publicity is to find the right public and to see how this public reacts to the product. By releasing their benchmark campaign in the Eastern Townships, advertisers can have a more accurate and specific result for their research. This reality of biculturalism can be seen as representative of the needs, values and norms of the rest of Quebec. The closeness of the two cultures bring advertisers a source of information of how to improve their adds. They can then redesign them (if needed) and release a full scale publicity campaign that can now be seen and/or heard across Quebec.


As we walk more and more in a century where multiculturalism is replacing  biculturalism, media and advertisers have to adapt themselves to a new reality. They can’t stay in the same pattern if they want to stay in touch with the population’s needs and values. The more you know your customers, the better your advertisement is. The better your advertisement is, the bigger is the number of people that will buy the products. Especially if those people are part of the public you were targeting first.