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Business advertisement is applied in all parts of the universe. Advertisement has hidden power which makes many customers purchase the product advertised whether it is useful to them or not. For example, televisions do not only show programs and shows, but also commercial advertisements in between the shows. The real message of advertisement is presented in a hidden manner so that the audience can be persuaded to purchase the product even if it is of less importance to them. In this case, the advertisement may not be important to the viewer, but creates some importance in viewers mind. Scientists call this the subliminal message. This refers to the hidden information in the advertisement which makes viewers think the product is important to them. Subliminal marketing refers to the technique of passing a message subconsciously using graph design elements. The technique uses stereotypes and connotations existing in the society to reinforce sales through tapping the mind of the audience. Subliminal messages appear in every marketing and advertisement in all parts of the universe.
Televisions use the money from advertisement to carry on their daily activities. This is why there are commercial breaks in between programs. Business persons and organizations look for designers and experts to design the most attractive message to the audience. The purpose of the advertisement is to capture the targeted group and if possible even the untargeted group. Success in business is a matter of secret. In this case, business persons have to use every possible means that can increase sales and ultimately the profit (Johar, 2006). This is why advertisement is very powerful. People find themselves in a dilemma after purchasing a product that was advertised in televisions and start wondering how they will use the product. The producer is not answerable to that. His aim was to market the product and gain more profit.
It is common to see moving pictures in televisions. The moving pictures are forms of subliminal messaging which rely on diligence of vision to make the delusion of movement in a sequence of images projected at 20 to 30 scaffolds per second. The hidden command in every frame flashes across the screen speedily quickly that it is subconsciously perceived. The command will apparently influence the subconscious mind of the audience. Thus, the message will have some measurable impacts in terms of the viewer’s behavior. The viewer will be most probably make a step ahead and purchase the new product as he believes it is important to him (Johar, 2006).
In televisions, subliminal messages appear as images, sounds or words. Usually whenever subliminal messages are heard or seen in televisions, they are not acknowledged for what they are. Instead, they are ignored by the conscious mind and the unconscious brain interprets them into something important (Howell, 1999). The subliminal messages are recognized by the unconscious or the subconscious mind. Since the conscious brain does not have time to analyze or rationalize these messages, the viewers are more likely to accept them and purchase the product, might more easily accept all of them. Televisions have used subliminal messages widely to increase sales for business persons and companies. For instance, color red has been used in many commercial advertisements as the advertisers believe that, the color will remind them of the product when they see it advertisement (Pratkanis & Aronson, 1991).
Recent research shows that subliminal messages affect behavior. In the 1950s, James Vicary (2002) advertised pop corns and coca-cola drink using subliminal message. This advertisement evoked the subconscious mind of the viewers and more than 8 million people bought the two products. There was an increase of 57% in the sales. Recent researchers such as Kautz (2009) have proved that subliminal advertising did jot only work in the past centuries, but also in this twenty first century. In his book, “Buyology” Martin Lindstrom claims that, the scariest fact about subliminal messages is the fact that people cannot anticipate their effects. For example, when watching a television program and a commercial break advertising a soft drink appears, the viewer is more likely to start craving for the drink even if he does not have it in the house. The viewer can decide to purchase the soft drink the next time he goes to the shop to satisfy the craving. In return, the sale of the product increases. Subliminal messages are external forces which influence the viewer and make then take an action to have the product advertised. Subliminal advertisement slip by the self-awareness of the viewers undetected. Their senses are less informed making their guards down. This makes subliminal advertisement more powerful as compared to other traditional methods of advertisement.
A study conducted to test the functionality of subliminal advertisement among smokers showed proved that subliminal messages are effective in provoking the minds of the viewers and making them change behavior as expected by the advertiser. Two groups of smokers were studied using different sets of images. The smokers under study were not informed on about the test until the research was complete. One set had imagery from traditional cigarettes such as attractive cow boys and the Americans from the west racing equipment from NASCAR. The second set of images contained apparent cigarette advertisements such as product photos and logos. Surprisingly, the first set which had images totally not related with cigarettes created higher craving centers in the brain as compared to the other set which showed logos and cigarette pictures. This is evident that subliminal messages make television viewers purchase products they should not have bought were it not for the subliminal messages. Martin Lindstrom points out that, what people think can least affect smoking is in fact the grayest thing that can provoke the act. On the other hand, the logo and product pictures which have been used widely by producers to provoke the mind of the viewers do little or totally nothing to them. In most cases, advertisers use subliminal messages to provoke the mind of the viewers to increase sales. They use indirect messages to send a message to the audience. Others do it for fun to see how people can be provoked by the indirect massage. Most of the shopping television viewers buy is influenced subliminally without the viewers’ knowledge (Lindstrom, M., 2008).
Advertising is a powerful tool and no one can afford immunity to that power. In fact, advertisement is the best solution to market a product that has ragged behind for a long time. Business persons only have to look for an indirect advertisement that will link their product and objects in the advertisement. It becomes easier for the viewer to remember the indirect object and purchase the product, than to remember the direct product with no subliminal message. Subliminal messages get into the viewer’s mind and deliver the message without the viewer knowing about it. Ultimately, the viewer finds himself using the product after purchasing it from the shop. The craving provoked by subliminal messages is so strong to ignore ((Johar, 2006).
Johan Karremans conducted a study with a purpose of assessing whether subliminal grooming of a brand name of a soft drink would influence a viewer’s choice of drink. In this study, sought to ascertain whether subliminally preparing or priming the participant with an image or text without being aware of it would make the individual more familiar with the product or not. Half of his contestants were subliminally groomed with Lipton Ice. This product was repeatedly flashed on a television screen for twenty four million seconds; while the other half was groomed with a control never consisted of a brand. The study revealed that subliminally grooming a brand name of a soft drink (in this case Lipton Ice) influenced those who were thirsty want the soft drink. Recent studies have proved that even if viewers were not thirsty, they would be still biased towards the soft drink (Davies, 1999).
Subliminal messages affect all the viewers. It is hard for a viewer to avoid the influence of subliminal messages as they influence people subconsciously. This is because advertisers use stereotypes and connotations existing in the society to reinforce sales through tapping the mind of the audience. Whenever television viewers see a message or a text, or something reminding them of a certain product over and over again, they are forced by circumstances to believe the product is superior. In case the viewers have more opportunity and less information regarding the product, they will definitely reach out for that product. They will purchase products and learn their implication when they already have it at hand. Those viewers who are loyal to a certain brand will hardly understand the difference in quality or taste of the new generic and brand. Sometimes, a product from the same company is packaged in different brands. One part is packaged by the brand company, and the other part sent as store brand. Surprisingly, people will always like the product named as store brand. They are made to believe that this product has a better taste, whereas it is similar to the part packaged under company brand name. This is the power of subliminal advertisement (Pratkanis & Aronson, 1991).
Since people cannot avoid watching televisions, they cannot afford being influenced by subliminal advertisement. There are so many advantages of watching televisions which cannot be compared with the influence brought about by subliminal messages. Televisions inform people on the current issues, entertain and educate people on various issues. Therefore, the solution is admitting that subliminal messages are there and affect every television viewer. Everyone has to be responsible of his purchasing habits since subliminal advertisement will always be there. It is important to accept that every viewer is vulnerable to subliminal advertisement and nothing can be done to curb that. However, every viewer has to be cautious and avoid being manipulated y these messages. Being aware that subtle messages are there and that they can manipulate the viewers’ brain will help them think twice before purchasing a product that is advertised on television. It is advisable to critically analyze the brand advertised and make an informed decision before spending money on it. Ignorance will be the worst excuse for spending money in a product that is not useful to the buyer (Kautz, 2009).
Subliminally flashed messages can stimulate mood and induce awareness with a product. Advertisers can use anything that can catch the attention of the viewers. This is mostly done when an interesting program is on or during news. This ensures that the viewers have a chance to view the advertisement. Subliminal advertisements are also interesting to view (Roten, 1999). Advertisers ensure they use interesting indirect link which will attract the target group and the non targeted group. For example, it is more likely for advertisers to use edibles or toys whenever the primary target of the product is children. Edibles will not only attract children, but also adults. Youths are targeted with music and entertainment (Johar, 2006). These objects also attract the elderly and the entire audience. Beautiful women are commonly used as they attract both men and women. The messages selected are too attractive for any viewer to ignore. Additionally, they are designed to influence the mind subconsciously. Therefore, the viewers will not recognize that they are influenced. They will find themselves having purchased the product in the television advertisement.
In conclusion, every television viewer is subject to subliminal advertisement. This refers to the hidden meaning in the advertisement that makes the audience think the product is important to them. Subliminal marketing refers to the technique of passing a message subconsciously using graph design elements. The technique uses stereotypes and connotations existing in the society to reinforce sales through tapping the mind of the audience. Subliminal messages appear in every marketing and advertisement in all parts of the universe. Advertisements are that powerful that it affects influences the mood of the audience and provoke behavior change (Horse, 2012). Business persons use subliminal advertisement to increase sales. They use stereotypes and connotations existing in the society to reinforce sales through tapping the mind of the audience. They use graphics and indirect objects to deliver a point home. This makes the audience make decisions without considering the truth concerning that product. Since television viewers cannot stop watching television for fear of subliminal advertisement, they have to be responsible of their purchasing habit. It can be the worst experience to purchase a product that will be of no use in the name of ignorance. Therefore, admitting that subliminal messages are there, and they influence the mind of all viewers will help people make informed decisions before purchasing products advertised on televisions.