Over the years, advertising has been an effective means of selling products and promoting new services. However, many people argue that its successes have brainwashed consumers into spending money on items that they do not need nor truly want. As I wrote about in my last post, many people also believe that advertising does not effectively sell products it simply persuades the population.
One articlestates: on a daily basis, people voluntarily hand over their sovereignty as Americans citizens in exchange for things and conveniences. The process of consumerism came in to effect slowly through the growing availability of consumer credit and debt to purchase things we do not need. As a nation, consumers are over-dependent on laborsaving devices, the absolute necessity of full-time work, the two income household to pay for more, and also the introduction of cheaper goods.
Through these implementations, slowly but surely the American population has grown to the standardization of wanting the next best thing, the latest and greatest.
Advertisements have also caused people to be dissatisfied with what they already have, and make them want more. Consumers, being exposed repeatedly to products that they cannot readily afford, creates a frustration that marketers call a gap between the current state and desired state. The larger the perceived gap between these states, the greater the need. The greater the need, the greater the tendency to engage in a decision process that will result in purchase. This in turn, leads to feelings of inadequacy especially amongst the less well off people in society.
Advertising creates a stream of materialism that causes people to place too much importance on obtaining goods and services. The fact that people are prepared to work long hours, or even turn to crime in order to gain goods, as a result portrays that advertising persuades people to go to great attempts to keep the same standard of living as the people they see around them.