Rhetorical devices in selected banking advertisements in Nigeria
Banking is one of the sectors that have deployed the resourcefulness of the new media for business transactions in Nigeria. Studies from the non-linguistic angle have established immense contributions of the sector to economic growth in Nigeria. While existing linguistic investigations have engaged the language of banking from the pragmatic viewpoint, studies from the stylistic component are very few. Studies have not examined how the banking sector in Nigeria deploys rhetorical devices to create awareness for their prospective customers. This paper engages a rhetorical investigation of banking advertisement in Nigeria with a view to describing how rhetorical devices serve persuasive purposes in the selected banks. The study is anchored on ethos, a subset of the theory of rhetoric. The study describes how the sampled banks deploy extrinsic and intrinsic ethos to persuade their potential customers. Guaranty Trust Bank and First Bank were purposively selected, considering their strength of patronage and deployment of new media advertisements. The study reveals that the selected banks package their advertisements to reflect character, expertise and experience. The selected adverts manifest creative and contextual engagement of songs; verbal, adjectival, pronominal, phrasal, clausal and sentential choices, rhetorical questions, repetitions and parallelism to express the inherent ideologies of the banks. The rhetorical devices adopted express how the banks deploy linguistic devices in enhancing patronage. A rhetorical engagement of advertisements of the selected banks reveals that the ideological statements, mission and visions of the selected banks are contextually expressed via rhetorical devices.