Have you ever wonder how many ads messages we exposed to every day? Recently studies show that normal people receive 20,000 ads/ marketing messages when we stay awake, and the number is going up every day, isn’t it crazy? if you think this is not a big deal as long as we don’t pay attention to those messages, you are so wrong! As one of the marketing people, our destiny is to grab more attention from you in a very short time. Perhaps we are too successful for what we did and simply put the society in danger. As follow, I will demonstrate three different types of hazards hidden in the current model of online advertising. Additionally, I will rate the level of danger on a scale of 1-5 where 5 is highly dangerous and 1 is not dangerous at all.
Endless messaging (Hazard level 2)
Marketing especially advertising marketing is both pervasive and invasive. It has all types of form any appears everywhere while we searching something on the internet. Campaigns running into our eyes with bright selling messages. Pop-up ads ruining all types of website experience, often slowing the site down to feed you with ads you don’t want to see. Making the ads hard to close by modifying the close button smaller and insignificant. Ads’ messages are on the radio, SERP (Search engine result page), and even on the product we purchase (The delivery box often came with coupons for next shopping). It’s hardly surprising that people are paying monthly subscription fees to avoid ads shows up when they using the services on YouTube, Hulu, and other streaming platforms. As a result, the browsing experience is terrible (annoying), you might feel harder to find what you want in a short time (inefficiency). Nevertheless, you can easily spend too much energy on surfing and end up with a lack of concentration on something that is more important in your life.
Generating unnecessary demand (Hazard level 4)
As far as we know, human consumption is way over than we actually need and the waste. This creates a high-intensity level of the planet resources shortage. Most ads out there push products that very few people actually need. This sounds confusing, right? Let’s try another approach: Any product or service that people actually need to survive and thrive is not necessarily needed an ad for advertisement, in other words, consumers are actually seeking them out. That is the reason why you rarely see ads for gasoline or utilities. But for other stuff that we fill our lives with, we have literally been convinced by the ads which can imply the “desire” part of our brain. For example, some ads like “You need this new BMW.” “Your life can be fulfilled by these fancy suits.” “iPhone provides a better life and you cannot live without it”. From new cars to iPhone, advertising is built to make people desperate to own something they didn’t even know they wanted.
Misguiding children’s mind (Hazard Level 5)
“Children are the future of our world”, most of you understand this concept really well. So what if I told you our future is been destroyed piece by piece with the most common tools that we let our children use every – if you don’t know, Google it! There is one topic I think it is the most important for the parents or elders. This is the one that been neglected by society is “unrealistic body image expectations”. Most men in ads normally have perfect body shapes with a charming smile on their faces. However, take a good look at the people around you, do all the men look like this? Furthermore, when the issue hit on women, it is even sadder to say that the standard of beauty is almost impossible to achieve for ordinary women in the real world. Therefore, the misguided images that create by the ads can heavily influence our children mind while using internet services. Sarcastically, we let our children use the internet to gain more “realistic” knowledge and information, but the ads create those images to restrict or misleading how children conduct the images of humans’ physical appeal standard.
So, how can we fix the problems above? There is something called “the code of ethics for digital marketers” that might help to mitigate the problems.
- Tell the truth no matter what
- Stay independent
- It is your right to voice your opinion
- Use the power to protect your surroundings
- Admit and correct your mistakes immediately.
- Avoiding remarks that may constitute defamation
- Don’t count on anonymity too much
- Stay away from biases