Today the high sale of popular consumer goods reflect the power of advertising and not the real needs of the society in which they are sold. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

A barrage of ads

Advertisement and its tactics have evolved greatly in modern times. I somewhat agree that advertisements can encourage one to make unnecessary purchases. Through gender advertisement, building hype, and planned obsolescence, advertisers can snare consumers. However, there exist shrewd consumers who make informed decisions based on product comparisons and user opinion.

Cunning advertisers snare potential customers by exploiting a number of tools. Gender advertisement, through the objectification of women, entices men to buy expensive products. Similarly, brand endorsements by famous stars is a clever way of getting fans and followers to buy a product even if there is no real need. Moreover, advertisers may resort to building hype around certain products or associate an image of luxury and higher social status with them. Consumers who are driven by such triggers try to purchase ridiculously expensive products to apparently boost their social status.

Pierce Brosnan (former James Bond) promoting a betel nut mouth freshener

Some companies promote their products by artificially limiting the life of a product also known as planned obsolescence. Companies can now limit the use of old products by a software update; thereby, forcing its clientele to buy their latest and most expensive product. Apple—a major stakeholder in the electronics industry, for example, has recently admitted to reducing battery life and slowing down of their old phones through a mandatory software update.

Planned obsolescence

On the other hand, some shrewd consumers are not entirely influenced by advertisements. These consumers choose wisely before making a purchase. They take into consideration product specifications, benchmark performance, expert, and user reviews before making an informed decision.

In conclusion, the advertisement industry has grown many-fold while its strategies have sophisticated. Companies now can exert a far greater influence on people through ads; however, intelligent consumers cannot be swayed by advertisements, but by popular opinion.