How advertising targets our children

Sangeeta Jha
All age groups

Created by Sangeeta Jha
Updated on Oct 06, 2015

How advertising targets our children
Reviewed by Expert panel

The purpose here is to assimilate the viewpoint of parents who like me are caught in the same whirlpool—the dilemma to educate our children about the worth of the promotional campaign. I am sure we all are facing this with our growing toddlers and I believe it goes on till adolescent age.

Does the product matter or the freebie inside: These days many product sales are driven by the promotional item tagged along. Everybody is following the enticement strategy and their direct soft targets are our children. Many times we end up paying Rs 200 or more for a product least consumed in home, just because our child is more interested in collecting the promotional item inside. Recurrent exposure to such gimmicks from various brands has changed their demand from, “I want to eat this” to “I crave to posses/collect the promo item, so buy me this.” Let me exemplify without spilling out the brand name:
There are couple of well priced chocolate brands which have established themselves well amongst children largely because of the tiny surprise toy inside it. Infact their media advertisement talks more about the promo item rather than the product.

Promotional campaigns target teenagers too: And this is not limited to small children even teenagers are immersed in this alluring flood/ whirlpool of promos. Today with the dramatic change in advertising methods and platforms, teenagers can be reached easily and more frequently via online/ mobile or any social media like facebook/ twitter/ youtube/ messaging / invites from a friends etc. to visit website. Can an adolescent mind evaluate such bombarding of promotions? Marketers are enticing them to purchase through rewards, incentive, exposing them to a celebrity, free concert passes. There is a plethora of such freebies being offered to the teenagers through the day.

Many questions spinning in my head:
a.) At what age are children mature enough to discern the marketing messages?
b.) What steps do we take as a parent to safeguard our children from such persistent advertising?
c.) How to explain our young children, right at the inception, that most of the time these are gimmicks to increase sales volume.
d.) It is equally challenging to counsel our teenagers, they need to be guided that each time such promotions may not be as genuine as they appear. There can be some underlying motive in between which gets blurred with such campaign. 

My questions still stay unanswered. Even though, I wish to bring about in my children  a consciousness about these gimmicks, where and how can I begin. I urge all parents to send in their suggestions and let’s discuss this out to make our children more aware and smarter.

This content has been checked & validated by Doctors and Experts of the parentune Expert panel. Our panel consists of Neonatologist, Gynecologist, Peadiatrician, Nutritionist, Child Counselor, Education & Learning Expert, Physiotherapist, Learning disability Expert and Developmental Pead.

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| Oct 10, 2015

I am totally agree with u, my 4 year old daughter always demands these type of product where nutritional value is almost zero . In cartoon channels ,showing same ads frequently, the aim of these type of company are our adorable kids. They are playing with our kids health. I think the goverment of India should take remedial steps as soon as possible, because this is the question of our future of india.

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| Oct 20, 2015

I also agree with the above topic. And there is another alternative to keep away our children from this growing marketing strategies. Recently we r getting some posts in Facebook Whatsapp, etc. , that some cream biscuits are containing Spiders in it and cold drinks containing Lizards in it. I think, if we show this posts to our children, then they will definitely come to a conclusion of not having that type of products in future.

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| Dec 31, 2015

hey sangeeta.. i agree with your point of view... :-)

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