Advertising Has Been Used to Promote Goods and Services from 1945 to Today and Controls Consumers’ Behavior and Habits

Topics: Advertising, Communication design, Advertising agency Pages: 9 (3018 words) Published: November 4, 2012
Research Paper

“The pervasiveness of contemporary advertising means that almost everywhere we turn, we are bombarded with appeals to buy-mostly under the guise of persuading us that buying will somehow improve our lives.” (Courtland L. Bovée and Williams F. Arens, Page 685). Fundamentally a good advert should attract attention and interest and should provide some control over the manner in which it is read. Advertising has been used to promote goods and services from 1945 to today and controls consumers’ behavior and habits. Considering the thesis, we could choose to agree with the fact that advertising manipulates consumers. This kind of marketing is essential for firms that want to show their superiority in a specific category of markets. People can see every day many adverts that encourage them to buy more and more goods or services. It makes consumers too materialistic and manipulates them psychologically to buy things they don’t need. Advertising promotes the consumption society. Obviously, many would agree that advertisers use tricky means in order to attract consumers’ attention. Moreover, not all parts of society are targeted. It can create problems considering children, ethnicities, religions and other criteria that affect population. There is already enough research that proves how harmful advertising can be. In fact, manipulating people psychologically causes harm. In the long run, it can develop a habit like it is in the United States. People using adverts don’t care about consequences and behave inappropriately. Some incitements, misleading, and minds’ control lead to what is called subliminal stimuli. By the way, advertising is maintaining competition between firms and as a consequence, it encourages innovation. Socially, advertising is considered as harmful but economically, it represents one of the main factors of innovation and technological progress.

This paper will show why and how the use of advertising has tremendously increased from 1945 to today. Then, we will show that advertisers use many efficient means of controlling people’s behavior and habits. Finally, we will argue that the effects of advertising can be harmful for populations and economies among a society. Considering that it seems dangerous and manipulative, we can point out that it is a huge source of information. It allows consumers to stay informed about new alternatives in their daily life. Moreover, some people think that this is better to buy products that were advertised than products unadvertised.

After World War II, many countries that have been concerned by the conflict had to re-build what was destroyed. The most affected by such a war was the moral of populations. Advertising already existed but it began a means of showing that life can continue without trouble. We might have seen this tendency in the United States first. In fact, many advertising campaigns had the aim to show solid families even if they have lost a brother, a father or a friend in Europe or in Asia. Companies have understood that such a disaster can be used to promote goods or services they propose to citizens. Then, the globalization of television in the 1940’s helped the development of the use of advertising. Such a means of communication is essential. Adverts might already have been seen in newspapers, billboards or on broadsides but never on a screen. Traditionally, companies already used paper-based supports to show a short preview about new products or innovations and a slogan. Following that tendency, this is the beginning of the consumption society. Advertising encourages people to buy more and more goods. On the long run, it creates a way of thinking that develops an addiction. Commercials for Coca Cola are one of the best examples that affect the overall society. Drinking Coke improves citizens’ daily life because it gets satisfaction. “It has a taste that’s uniquely satisfying – a quality that’s unmistakable” (Fowles, Jib. Page 725)....
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