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The Pursuit of Attention & How It Leads to Advertising Travesty

Advertising is all upon us…all over us.

To begin with, this piece doesn’t bode any pundit-esque thought, not even expert views regarding the undermining and deteriorating modern advertising. It’s just a commoner’s contemplation about it—perchance, a realization.

In the existence of different and diverse ads on every media platforms, identifying which one is effectual to their own target market is a complex idea. Opening your TV and watching countless ads playing after breaks will make us overwhelmed and intimidated by their sheer volume. From perfume to fast food to clothing to charity to an upcoming event—each one has an ad of their own. Some are comedic, some dramatic, and some are obviously misleading whereas most are farcical. That’s why as business owners who are not as financially big and gigantic as the companies behind these ads, to fathom and understand if these ads are effectively doing their task in a vast market where they belong is an intricate to do—because if you’re just a regular guy who owns a puny local store (a skim board shop for instance) you don’t have to possess a bird’s eye-esque to be acquainted to your audience, for you have only a palm-sized market to mind.

Advertising is a lot like life…you win some, you lose some

Then came misleading advertising

And this is where attention comes into the picture. Now that ads are as ubiquitous and as plenty as the existing physical shops, they have to create a picturesque, imaginary world to paint an attention-grabbing picture for their audience, which is the people who patronize the platform where they intend to put that ad. Advertiser’s hunger for attention forces them to create ads that seem swerving from the real goal of advertising, which is to convince people to need and purchase their product providing that it will tell the real facts about them.

But what I am saying is not a new idea nor a newfangled discovery. Misleading advertising has been etched in the history of marketing even before radio and TV were born. Advertisers have been tweaking reality and have their products adorned in faux and fancy toppings (pretty actresses, surreal world, theatrical acting, alluring voice over) just to gain attention from innocent constituents ever since 1800’s, when early Western advertisement was just nascent and blossoming. It is just that, the mode of advertising today is a quainter—yet worse—version of the old times.

Today, A-list superstars are used as if they are priced marionettes—or prostitutes—to endorse a certain product, to marry the label and the entire corporation that bears it, and to lure audiences as if having their name attached on the product is magical potion to change one’s lives or, to believe that they’re faces are credible conduit to possess whatever they possess—their physical beauty, charisma, or perhaps, if possible, their fame.

Advertising is here to stay…for better or for worse

Clandestinely malevolent. This is the current situation of modern advertising today, or to make it softer, misleading, and false. Most advertisers betray people. They consider people as frail subjects of their experiments, like guinea pigs, like vulnerable, childlike creatures. For instance, hamburgers are photoshoped to appear bigger and more savory on newspapers and magazines so that every mouth in the city will ask their companion hands to get some money in their pockets to satisfy their driveling tongues. Scenes are shot in a perfect studio-chroma version of this world’s daintiest paradise, so that every innocent kid will pull the hem of their parents’ clothes to bawl over a spectacle that in reality isn’t as beautiful as shown on TV. Hired voice connoisseurs are always willing to lend a helping hand so that every radio ad will be ear candy to those saccharine-loving listeners.

The distressing part is, most people, however sentient they are with advertising’s validity, are still attracted to it as if they are just feeble metal on a ground pulled by a magnet. People are used to it; they are numb to the ads that eventually turned out to be as a perfect intermission number of a larger entertaining show. The people are unconsciously suffering from a thing that is a hundred percent avoidable.

On the other hand, while marketers who depend heavily on media ads are rejoicing with their own success, companies and honest trades that are incapable of paying expensive amounts of money on this kid of advertising suffer from a stigma and downbeat social dogma: many people believe that having no strong media presence—TV, radio and newspaper—is being incapable of providing their needs, or give them the best possible solution to their problems. Indeed, most people tend to consider those companies or products without media presence such as products and services sold by MLM network marketing people, small and local business owners, and even online trade operators, as second-rate and substandard version of those that are being endorsed by famous Hollywood stars, those that are shown incessantly after every NFL halftimes and timeouts.

Hence, advertising becomes a game exclusive only to those who have money, to those who can afford to pay a Depp, a Knowles, and a Bryant.



Endless Rise, Inc.

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