Wednesday, 3 March 2010

The Social Edge

I work in advertising as a designer who has a rather healthy interest in marketing strategy and mass communication. I often wonder while watching adverts on TV and viewing them on websites and in the press just exactly how effective are they. Is there a more efficient way of getting that information out there and making that sale, whether it be a product service or even just an idea. We live in a world where we are constantly saturated with information and hence we've become I feel largely desensitized to traditional forms advertising. It's no use throwing large amounts of money at airtime and press space when people are just going to switch off to it.

This combined with the rise of digital social networking has given consumers has more power than ever. In fact I would tend to think that social networking contributes quite heavily to our "data saturation" and hence strays our eyes further from commercial messages. Sure there is loads of advertising on myspace and tons of information gleaned from facebook but peoples focus is so heavily on the networking that we have the rise of "micro" celebrities and almost obsessive behaviour by users towards developing social status. This behaviour has also lead to the revival of the individual and more than ever people are trying to stand out from the crowd. There seems to be an explosion in interest of punk mentality and D.I.Y. fashion and music as a result and this seems to be hurting things like the record industry in a big way. These "individuals" do not want overpriced, mass produced products they want things that will give them the social edge of elevating them above the crowd.

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