Four Reasons Why Advertising Has Become Our Most I

1. Advertising dominates our cultural environment – almost everywhere; exposed to roughly 3500 ads daily. Global ad spend has been huge. Ads are in schools in the US, labels are ads. Ads may be on the moon in the future.

2. Much of the media system is developed as a delivery system for advertisers; programmes have to be able to fit in ad breaks, reason why football cannot be shown in the US

3. More creative energy goes into advertising than any other cultural industry;  all immersed in the ad industry

4. Nearly all forms of creative expression now rely on the advertising industry; Product placement deals, music licensing.


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What do ads tell us about products?

Answer: Little.

Ads barely bother to give you information about the product any more.
Why less info is more in advertising
1. Clutter
2. Regulation on truth claims – it’s better to stay away from making truth claims about the product
3. Emotional associations more powerful

Advertisers have learned that trying to connect their products to non-material values, social values such as love, friendship, family life, helps them get around regulation and works best.

E.G: De Beers, Diamonds Are Forever 1947 campaign.  


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What do ads tell us about the world?

  • Gender roles/stereotypes
  • It seems innocent, arbitrary set of stories
  • Solution to climate change – we need to consume less, advertising still wants us to consume more. 
  • All advertising shares the message that only fulfilment in life comes from consumption. 
  • “Green washing” products that’s environmentally damaging but create the idea that it actually belongs in nature, by associating their product with things that we like
  • Amnesty International – ‘political’ advertising is banned. Anti-Shell advert, seen as political, Audi advert satirising it, weirdly not seen as political (HEGEMONY IN ACTION) 
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