Lately, our vacations are on and while sitting at home and switching through the TV channels, what struck me was that, it was more of the advertisements than the program or the show being broadcast.

Aren’t they too influencing?

Advertisements aren’t inherently bad, but many use manipulative tactics that influence in ways we don’t even realize. Despite how much you think you ignore them, and how little you may believe they affect you, that’s not necessarily the case. Here’s a look at how manipulative ads work, the problems they cause, and what you can do to avoid these negative consequences.

The goal of advertising is to sell a product. Advertising campaigns use a variety of sophisticated strategies to build a relationship with the customer so that they can become emotionally attached to the product over time. As a result, the product becomes part of a person’s daily routine, which makes them more likely to purchase a similar product offering from the company in the future. It’s no more about the promotion of goods and service – the objective now is to provide an experience to the audience, to be specific, the “target group” of the brand.

Advertising subsidises the cost of media. If newspapers did not carry ads, each issue would cost an upward of 50 bucks, making it unaffordable. And if people cannot afford newspapers, democracy as we know would not exist. Advertising also ensures that we watch TV programs almost free of charge. It is advertising that pays for the costs of running a channel. Every social media channel needs advertising revenue to sustain itself. If there were no ads, Facebook would not last very long.

Culture is one of the significant aspects which is changed by seeing advertisement. It is essential to know what culture means that the way of life which includes beliefs, aesthetics and institutions of a civilization. This definition shows that culture is more effected by advertising, because images used in advertising are often idolized, they eventually set the standard which we in turn feel we must live up to. Experts in the field call it “referencing”. We reference, either intentionally or otherwise, to lifestyles represented to us (in the media or in real life) that we find attractive. We create a vision of ourselves living this idealized lifestyle, and then behave in ways that help us to realize the vision.

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Because of all this, advertising has created a strong impact on our lives – not just in terms of lifestyle but also our psychology, behaviour and aspirations.
We see an ad where a child goes to a store and asks for ‘namak’ and gives a lecture on purity to the shopkeeper on receiving some other brand of salt. Why do we see this? Because through advertising, every single person has evolved in terms of awareness of the brands, which earlier used to be an objective to achieve.

There are all kinds of ads, but in general they all aim to keep you from thinking and, instead, make your buying choices based on an emotional response. The most important thing is to remember to think, because regardless of how manipulative advertisements can be your choices are still yours and yours alone.
These are my views, do think about it and share your thoughts.

-Swathi Karamchedu


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Leo Oommen says:

    They are advertising in the skies for people like us. Advertisers are the reason how the society runs and they shape the collective consciousness of our society. But it is upto us to decide about how much it influences us. Nice write-up !


  2. Wow because this is great work! Congrats and keep it up


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