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Several pieces of research show the relationship between the things that an individual see and the way they behave. In this research, the impact of the promotional activity and advertisements among the youth has been analyzed in detail. This research has been carried out by using questionnaires. 45 people participated in this questionnaire. This was distributed in the university among the selected audience.
The questionnaire consists of two segments. These two segments are: some practical examples of the impact of advertisements (agree/disagree) and the extent to which youth are affected by them (on a scale). The conclusion of the research proved that the youth are indeed influenced to a great degree by the advertisements and promotional activity that they witness. Deep analysis showed that these activities can even alter the thinking patterns and societal behaviors of the youth in the long run. KeywordsAdvertisements, youth, promotional activity, behaviour.
In any society, the youth are considered as the custodians of the future of that region or place. The youth are becoming more and more materialistic and are attaching value to things which were not considered important in the past century. Advertising is a means of communication with the users of a product or service. Advertisements are messages paid for by those who send them and are intended to inform or influence people who receive them. Advertisements are the channel through which the consumer is informed about the product and value is attached to the product. Where advertisements are thought to be beneficial, the current application of advertisements is doing more harm than good and can have thought altering effects in the long run. The social, structural, internal and external factors that are key in forming the behavioral patterns of the youth, the impact of advertisements is on all and people are affected by different adverts on the basis of these factors.
For centuries advertisements have served the purpose of introducing a product to the mass market and then taking it to the next. Advertisements and promotions have been of pivotal importance in the past not only for the introduction of a product to the market but for its overall success as well. In the past advertisements were generally hand written or printed pamphlets. Recent years have seen the evolution of technology and that of the people as well. The life of a common man has become exceedingly busy and the little time that he has to vent the stress may or may not be spent sitting in front of the television. The businesses of today have taken note of that and promotions have evolved as well. Over the past century the advertisements have changed from being a one-liner prints to being much more and sometimes even advertising without even saying anything. Advertisements are impacting the way people behave, people react and it is altering people’s buying patterns.
It is largely accepted that the age group that can be easily influenced is the youth and the advertisements of today and doing everything right to make the most of this fact. The advertisements these days are targeted at the ‘dreams’ of the individuals to whom the products are pitched. Advertisements are everywhere television, newspapers, magazines, journals, radio, press, internet, direct selling, hoardings, mailers, contests, sponsorships, posters, clothes, events, colours, sounds, visuals and even people. Putting an Apple logo at the back of a phone is a promotion of the product and the consumer has been taught to derive utility from it. Logos on cars are an example as well. People have paid for the car not for the logo stamped on it, it is advertisement of the company that has manufactured the car, the owner of the product is unknowingly promoting the brand which he uses. Youth are heavily impacted by that thing, according to a research it has been found that there is a 50% chance that 2 strangers will get along well if they see each other drive a car from the same brand. The same can be said about phones and for that matter for any product. Promotions and advertisements have attached a value to all the products in this world and consumer behavior is such that consumers feel like part of a bigger family and it gives them something to talk about, something, that brings them on the same page. It is like forming a connection when an iPhone user sees another, when an Audi owner sees someone else getting out of one.
The favourite leisure time of the youth of today is televisions and mobile phones and they intentionally or unintentionally pick cues from them and apply them to their lives. Advertisements have been catered to a local population in the past and they have been successful in altering the buying patterns of the locals. But since the age of globalization has started the adverts are becoming more and more far reached and their impacts have increase manifold. They introduce a foreign culture to some other region which may or may not be helpful. They make an individual see the world through the eyes of the others. Advertisements today aim emphasize how the product being offered can help them further their dreams or quench their immediate need. This may be true for some products but there is a downside to these ‘need-aimed’ adverts as well. These advertisements aim at exploiting the wishes of people by showing them desirable things, which may include but are not limited to girlfriends/boyfriends, manors, luxurious lifestyle, glamour, spotlight, adrenaline rush and then the advertisements of the modern day try and craft a link between the product being offered and their wishes and dreams. People, particularly the youth, start associating the wishes and their attainment to the use and utilization of these products.
The prime example of this is owing an SUV and protocol culture, anyone owing a SUV in our society is considered to be influential and the youth see that, it is advertisement of being in a position of power and when someone from the youth who witnessed this will come in a position of power there is a 70% likelihood that they will try and resort to that life which they saw. Similarly, commercials for soft drinks and body- sprays show exotic lifestyles and they exhibit people deriving utility from the consumption of these sorts of products, the youth knowingly and unknowingly start following the exhibited lifestyles and start thinking that it is the new ‘normal’.
Like every product and service in this world advertisements can have a negative impact on people’s life as well. The aspects to be considered while assessing their impacts can vary from financial impact to cultural and societal impact. Seeing is believing is the new approach to advertisements. The youth are fed portions of the same thing over and over again until they start thinking that this is the way life is. An act that is culturally considered bad is depicted in an advertisement as being good and no one takes notice, but with time, people start accepting it as being normal or they consider it to be something that is allowed This questionnaire was held at a university. The questionnaire contained two parts. One being the quantitative and the other being the qualitative evaluation of the impact. The questionnaire consists of nine questions that were targeted at determining the thoughts and feelings of the participants regarding advertisements and their impacts. They developed a scale for the answer selection.
This scale consists of rungs with the “Strongly disagree” as the lowest rung and “Strongly agreed” as the highest rung. For the quantitative questions the scale was set from 1-5 with 1 being the least and the 5 being the highest level of agreement. Analysis and resultThe result of the above-given questionnaire is summarized as follow:The analysis and buying patternsAs a general view of the questionnaire survey, it was concluded that the youth are highly maligned by the media and the advertisements shown thereon, the results confirmed that the advertisements were indeed influencing buying patterns and were helping associate an ‘image’ to the product by either using celebrity endorsements or other sorts of adverts. The first hypothesis that was received as a result of this questionnaire is that a member of the among the youth was more influenced by an advertisement and promotion than a word of mouth of a family member.
As it is a fact that the youth of any society hold the key to the future of that society hence it is of huge significance that the effect of advertisements and promotions should be controlled on the youth and it has be analyzed that their buying patterns and behaviors are largely affected by them. The main areas affected as highlighted by the research are that the youth are becoming increasingly ignorant about their own culture and have started adopting the culture of the west (as most products and adverts are produced there). Controls need to be imposed to take care of the matter that we must retain out own identity as a nation and as a society and these areas need to be worked on so the society can benefit from the positive side of the advertisements and curb the negatives.
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