World Communication Association
Individualism is a central value in French, Spanish, and American cultures. However, what it means to be an individual and how this is expressed varies among cultures. This study explores the ways that television advertising reflects individualism in French, Spanish, and American cultures and uses a qualitative approach that allows coding categories to emerge from the three countries' samples rather than imposing previously defined categories from a single culture. The study identifies six main advertising message strategies across the three cultures: the Efficient Individual, the Sensual Individual, the Attractive/Healthy Individual, the Esteemed Individual, the Performant(e) Individual, and the Intellectual Individual. The six strategies vary in frequency with some claims used more than others. Differences within cultures are also identified and implications for the issues of standardization and specialization are discussed.