All of us are consumers, there’s no getting around it. It’s how the world works.
But we don’t all consume in the same way.
Some of us see through the subtle programming of advertising, while others are engulfed by it.
Advertising is a powerful tool. I wanted to write a post for those who simply don’t understand what’s really going on.
Disclosure: Based on personal opinion, not to be taken as advice. Seek a professional if required.
I grew up poor. One part of being poor is not having any new clothes -or the right clothes.
Of course, there were many occasions when other children were keen to point out the holes in my boots, or the fact I was wearing the same clothes everyday, or that I didn’t have proper trainers -branded trainers.
These children were astute. They were absolutely right.
They were also, along with me, completely brainwashed.
A Consumer Mindset
When I first experienced the mocking, it was hard to take.
But I couldn’t change our financial situation. It was out of my hands.
Soon, I started to study their reasons for denigrating me. More so, I sought to understand why we all wanted to own a pair of branded trainers.
And when you step back and really look at it, the whole picture becomes clear as day.
Like lifting a veil, you can see how human behaviour is influenced.
And in this case, the matter of spending money, the influence is from advertising -good advertising targeted at younger minds.
Stop Spending By Understanding Advertising
In short, advertising is simple. There are two key components to effective advertising:
1. The environment is such that you expect it, and
2. You do not mentally challenge it.
And that’s why it’s so difficult to introduce advertising to some environments -because you wouldn’t accept it.
Say a sweets company wanted to put a poster in your child’s classroom. Would you accept it?
It is the same logic concerning all environments.
The danger (to your wallet) is in not consciously acknowledging the advert.
Your complex mind digests information without your knowledge. And everybody who’s interested in your wallet knows it.
Not All Advertising Is Bad
I promote this blog.
Lots of companies promote their products, and as a result you are likely exposed to hundred, if not thousands, of ads everyday.
Most of your indirect interactions will likely involve an unseen Human Being, who is seeking to influence your behaviour.
But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
If I didn’t promote, you’d never have found me.
I also run advertisements on this website to help pay for it.
And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. You may want the product that is offered, or to visit that website like you visited mine.
But, you have to be able to challenge any advertisement.
Just understand that it is not a coincidence that an ad has appeared in your life. It is there because somebody is trying to get to your wallet, or influence your behaviour in some way. -And if you want to stop spending money, you should know that.
What Is Advertising?
Lastly, I want to define ‘advertising’, because it isn’t just an AD that you see on a billboard, or the thing that separates your favourite TV show.
Adverts are everywhere, and are everything.
It is an experience – like you’re currently having at my blog. If you enjoy the read, maybe you’ll come back another day. Maybe you’ll subscribe to my mailing list.
A blog post can also be an advert, in that I could write a post called ‘HOW TO MANAGE YOUR BUSY DAY – MY 4 GREAT TIPS!‘, solely designed to sell you my product or business.
So, I could write about how it must be hard for you to manage your busy life, then offer my eBook about time management to help. Or offer my services to save you time. And if I don’t have those things to sell you, I could provide an affiliate link to somebody who does.
All of this is a simple breakdown of how the world really works. I hope there were no surprises for you.
Those kids, back in that playground, likely spend their lives making sure they look the part.
Unbeknownst to them, they were programmed by an advertiser. Now they live their lives with a very odd, and expensive, value system.
And of the advertiser? The programmer?
He or she probably wouldn’t have dreamed of wasting money on the product they promoted.
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