Jumping from one media source to another, our days are filled with every kind of technology possible. Supposedly this helps us do things faster, buy more, and stay informed. When I go on the Internet I am suddenly connected to a world that spans far beyond the borders of my campus or hometown. I can talk with friends in Scotland on Facebook or get the weather forecast on Google, not just for Lakeland, but for Atlanta, Hilton Head, S.C. or Brunswick, Me., where my extended family members live.
While clicking from site to site, checking things off my “to do” list, I am continually reminded by various pop ups or ads on the computer screen that I could lose weight instantly by ordering acai berry, or find the perfect soul mate by simply submitting my profile information to a particular dating site.
I realized after taking the NewsU course on Understanding Media, that I am exposed to a lot more ads and technology everyday than I ever knew. It has become so ingrained in our culture and lives that we almost don’t think about it anymore.
The surprising part is that all these ads are targeted. No advertisement is randomly created and placed, in hopes of getting just anyone’s attention. An ad is developed to truly convince a certain audience that what they need is what this company has.
An ad may show a happy family sitting down for a nice meal, the idea being that if you buy a certain brand you too can have a happy family! Another method to get people to buy “stuff” is the scare tactic. Here you may see an elderly woman lying helpless on the floor — the solution is Life Line or some other marketed product that can help relieve all your worries.
There are so many strategies in the world of advertising, and they are all designed to do the same thing: convince the viewer! My question is, what type of ads are the most effective, and what age group is the most susceptible to marketing tactics?