We all know that perception is the ability to see, hear, or become aware of something through the senses, but we have to consider how it affects us as consumers without realizing.
They are selling a lifestyle.
They know what we want, how we want to live and they take advantage of it.
It is the case of the product placement: the products that appear on tv shows, films etc. which you can clearly recognize and that will probably awake on you a desire for having that specific product.
This happens as well with some clear advertisements, such as the airlines at Christmas, with their campaigns of people reuniting again: hugs, emotional music, tears…
Haven’t you felt the necessity to catch the first flight to visit anyone, even that relative you haven’t seen in years, just to have that special moment?
And how about driving a BMW? They are not selling the car, they are selling you freedom: all those beautiful landscapes, only you in the road, with the sun and the wind touching your skin. They don’t show the car and still you want to have a BMW, you need one. And that is what makes this spot so great.
Finally, there’s the Coca-Cola case, the great genius on selling lifestyles: for families, for athletes, for young people… We could put many examples of their campaigns, but the main idea is contained in the mythical Argentinian advertisement: Coca-Cola is for everyone.
At last, it is also the case of subliminal advertising.
Subliminal advertising saw the light for the first time back in 1957, when the market research specialist James Vicary introduced the sentences “Eat Popcorn” and “Drink Coca-Cola” in a film footage. Both phrases appeared printed in a single frame and its duration was long enough for the viewer to read them unconsciously, but too short for the viewer to be aware of it.
However, you don’t have to worry, even if subliminal messages can affect consumer behaviour, recent analysis have shown that their effect is very limited. In the next video we can see a clear example of subliminal advertising:
But, in the end, the degree of influence media has on us depends on our strength to resist or not their attempts to sell us everything.