Advertising – Art of Manipulation

24 jun
Hana Tiro

Good advertising can go a long way. Ads and manipulation go hand in hand, especially in cases of vulnerable and insecure people. Sometimes, people should just put the ego on the side and ignore the desire to prove themselves. Then, you will realize how much of the goods you own are, in fact, unnecessary.

An ordinary phone costs $200, while iPhone costs $500. How did they make an iPhone so trendy? The form of advertising behind it: true Americans use American products made in America, land of the free and home of the brave, by Americans to Americans, and works best on American soil and on the American network. Of course, this mobile phone is being bought by crème de la crème of Americans, meaning, the big stars. And we all know that, precisely the glamorous stars affect people more than anyone else. Because everyone wants to be famous. And copying celebrities is the shortest route to fooling yourself that you really are famous, and liberal, and progressive and, finally – happy. All of that by just abnormally buying all of the things your idol owns.

These manipulative capabilities of advertisement are backed by many psychologists and sociologists. They know exactly how to make a 13-year-old buy a particular product and to keep admiring this same brand again, and again, and again…

An example of one old trick that worked, at least, on me and my friends:
at the time when we were about eleven or twelve years old, we began to compare our bodies with the bodies of actresses, models, etc. We all had an idol. To some, it was Britney Spears, and to others Kate Winslet. No matter the case, we have sought a kind of beauty that was unattainable when you are twelwe years old. Entering the teen years, we started to put on makeup. Some girls would do it just at their homes. Other girls, with enough self-confidence, would go out with full makeup on their faces.
When we started to buy makeup on a regular basis, what do you think – how did we choose it? Except the price. My first mascara was the one (I do not remember the brand exactly) which was advertised by a girl with a small nose, long blond hair and blue eyes. I remember her, because I wanted those face features. And I remember, also, buying the mascara thinking I will finally look pretty. Believe it or not, it did not make my nose smaller or make my hair look highlighted. It only slightly stressed out my eye lashes.

Getting back to the tricks. They are mostly executed on youngsters. Young girls are immature and emotionally unstable. And, the worst of all, bombarded with pictures of skinny girls with silky long hair, perfectly clean face and beautiful smile with straight teeth. It is impossible for one mortal to look like that. Even the most beautiful ones in advertisements are photoshopped and manipulated by picture editing softwares. After they made it clear to us what beauty is, through the teen years, they formed a certain ideal of beauty. Now they use it against us.

Selling magazines increases in case there is a trick for quickly losing weight on the cover, or tips on how to get teeth to be pearly white. That way, we buy toothpaste they want us to buy, and go to the gym they want us to go, by giving us the 20% off coupon for two-hour workout. For those two hours they will fake-motivate us, and make us pay for a one full month at that gym.

They make us think that a bag is not a bag if it’s not signed by a celebrity. And all of this in order tobe happy. Because, sincere smile is only the one with the pearly white teeth, when we tighten our perfect abs while holding to our overpriced bag.

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