ARE WE BUYING LIFESTYLES?

Here is a question for you to think about: are we buying lifestyles? Product and also service advertisements are being associated with different kinds of lifestyles. Because of our school assessment I’ve lately been paying more attention to this kind of advertising. It’s easy to notice that ads are creating visions about what our life could be like if we bought the advertised product. The product itself sometimes stays in the background while a certain lifestyle is in the spotlight. This is typical to lifestyle brands.

Let’s think about well-known brands that use lifestyle in their marketing strategy, Red Bull, Apple, Ferrari, Calvin Klein just to name a few. It easily becomes a big part of your lifestyle and you become loyal. Red Bull is a great example. Nowadays it’s so much more than an energy drink. It is included in sports, clothes, art etc. and it really is a part of peoples’ lifestyles.

Even if the product were low quality, with the help of using lifestyle in advertisement it can turn into a must-have product. In my opinion this strategy could be used even more. By buying lifestyle brands individuals can attach themselves into a certain group of people. With lifestyle brands you can also show your values to others. Lifestyle advertisers are trying to make the product a part of customers’ personality and the ads make customers want that style of living that is shown in the advertisement. Appealing to the emotions is much more effective when it comes to marketing products than for instance telling boring facts about the product.

Take a look at this picture. Here is a typical ad in which lifestyle has been utilized. Can you tell what is actually advertised in this picture?

blog_michael_kors_ad_fall_2009When I first saw this ad, it wasn’t clear to me what it advertises. But it immediately caught my attention when I spotted it on stylehog’s website. However, this is Michael Kors’ advertisement and it sells Kors’ luxury designs. The Brand represents a jet set lifestyle as can be seen from the picture. People, who live like that,  will probably be interested in these designs as well as people who go after that kind of lifestyle.

I found this amazing article about lifestyle branding by Alexander Chernev (June 07, 2011.). I think that he summarises the whole idea of lifestyle marketing excellently. “As in any market, there will be winners and losers. The winners will be the brands that are best positioned to represent popular lifestyles”, writes Chernev. Nowadays lifestyle is the key to the competition in the market and advertisements are the place where you can see it the most.

So, are we buying lifestyles? The answer is simple. We are buying things that slowly blend in with our lifestyle and modify it or sometimes we might change our way of living because of a product. All in all our purchases have a huge impact on our lives so I think there’s no better way to market a product than attaching it into a desired style of living. But it’s up to you how you let lifestyle advertisements affect you!

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2 Responses to ARE WE BUYING LIFESTYLES?

  1. miraloi says:

    Thanks for this good post! You have a good point and I totally agree. It’s the social approval as well as status one is buying with almost every product. Really, If I need a new bag to carry my things, basicly any bag would fullfil that purpose. But no, I won’t buy my bag from a supermarket, It has to reflect the look I prefer, which is succesfull, classy, sexy, fun and stylish. I would rather choose a bag fullfilling those needs more than the need of carrying my things (and the truth is, I love my current bag, but my A4 size notebook doasn’t entirely fit in it…). We are truly strange beings..

  2. pekved says:

    This was good perspective to lifestyle advertising method! If I would be advertiser, I used that method, too. This kind of advertising can be seen also in television series, movies etc. Everybody can think oneself, if they need to buy a certain product to have better lifestyle. It can be even thought that people who behave like advertisers want are weak in their decisions. They haven’t clear opinion what they really need or what they want to be.
    The problem is, if the direct target group is e.g. young people who cannot tell the difference between fact and fantasy. That’s what I figured.

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