The youth are one of the most important demographics for marketers in present day. Their brand preferences are still gelling, they have money to spend, and they exert a strong influence on their parents' spending (even on big-ticket items such as cars). Twenty Five percent of teens access the Internet through mobile devices, companies are targeting them where they hang out- in apps, in games, and on websites that stream music and video and offer other downloadable content. Teen-focused brands use a combination of “traditional” marketing techniques and new communication methods to influence product preferences. Brands appealing to teens take advantage of their particular vulnerabilities: the desire to fit in, to be perceived as attractive, and to not be a huge dork. Teens are extremely attuned to their place in the peer hierarchy, and advertising acts as a kind of "super peer" in guiding them toward what's cool and what's acceptable. Both teen boys and girls are highly susceptible to messages around body image, and marketers use this to their advantage. As the youth become more engaged in the media surrounding them they will become more aware of the high-end brands and clothing that their favourite models and celebrities are wearing. This type of advertising is put in place to try and shift buying habits so that as this demographic continues to age they will favour high end over low end and become lifelong customers. During any given day, a person is exposed to a constant stream of advertising. It has become a part of life, quietly seeping into the subconscious while watching television programs, shopping for groceries, or even on the daily commutes. The main purpose of advertising is to elicit an emotion that drives us to purchase the end product. They influence attitudes, ideas and behaviors in those watching, and unfortunately those shifts aren't always toward the positive. In the last ten years, there has been a large increase in the teenage population with anorexia and obesity disorders. The content or pitch of said propaganda is the the main problem at hand. Although the products being marketed vary, the techniques and images used to sell them are generally the same. The focus has changed from the product to the consumers sense of self worth and success. On the negative spectrum of the scale some of the visual imagery used to sell products is sexually driven and misleading as most are computer generated or associate a positive emotion with a product. In order to warn the public of such content, television programming is forced to adhere disclaimers at the beginning of shows where questionable matter is included. For advertising however, no such warning exists. Due to the lack of advisories, advertisements effect on the youth is a particularly hot button issue. Over the years, there have been a lot of research on alcohol and cigarette ads and their effect on children. More recently, there have been more subtle marketing strategies with the placement of certain products in films and TV shows. Studies show that advertisements can push unhealthy behaviors in children and adolescents. They also show that it is becoming increasingly difficult to protect them as companies market their products by exploiting the Internet and social media. According to experts, the odds of underage drinking are increased by advertisements. A recent study showed that exposure to alcohol advertising is linked to an increase in adolescent alcohol use and this in turn is associated with higher levels of problems such as alcohol drinking and getting intoxicated, getting into fights and missing school. Through alcohol advertising, adolescents are being sold a commodity that they should not consume in any amount. Although there are some positive effects of advertising on children, the fact is that advertising can also have many negative effects on young minds, especially if parents are not careful and do not teach their children that money is important. In many cases, the messages in the ads are misinterpreted and it results in children having the wrong beliefs about a large number of issues. Advertising influences their minds, creating a need for them to own the product they see. Flashy ads on TV, magazines, the Internet and other forms of media only generate impulse buying.
Parents who are unable to deal with increasing demands or temper tantrums have a tendency to give in to their children's demands. This result in children getting used to the kind of lifestyle that is shown on television and other media forms. This creates the wrong impression on young minds that they will not be able to live a life that does not come with certain material things. Thus, it is certainly true that the power of advertising effects on children is one that cannot be ignored easily.
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