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It is often stated that the goal of advertisement is to create a need out of an object that is otherwise may not be considered as essential element. In other words, advertisement is instrumental in developing and constructing a need for an object or product. Advertisement has a tendency to increase the need and create needs. However, the nature of need changes with time and taste and this is exactly what we see while viewing the two Swatch advertisements. The differences and the similarities between the two Swatch advertisements reflect changing cultural values. Alongside, there would be two examples from the new media, a social network site Twitter, to show the main change in traditional advertisement and new age advertisement.
The first, and the older, advertisement is from a time that is beyond the known world of public internet, information technology and globalization. The world of that era was much more confined within its culture than today. This advertisement has a thorough caption. It states, “Swatch watch: Spirited gathering takes time to probe meaning of equinox. Finding none, they party.” There is almost a narrative context to this advertisement. It tells a story. It refers to the younger generation and induces them to have fun and party. Clearly, the basic audience of this advertisement is the younger generation. The characters are all clad in local dresses that are familiar to the day-to-day cultural life of the audience. The indication is sporty and very young. As per the narration, there is also a bedtime story to tell. However, this was the time before the popularity of Latino culture and the abstract world of Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
The new Swatch advertisement can be well emulated as a prime example of globalization and hybridization in a market where the maxim is to go beyond the parameters of the local market structure and capture the global audience. Thus, it could narrate the aspect of the basic issue globalization and hybridization is but a two-way approach and where the basic maxims of capitalistic economy are taken into consideration at every step of formulating the strategies of marketing. It is obvious that the basic impetus of any business is to deal with the principals of profit and the methods of maximization of profit margin. Nevertheless, they remained focused mainly in the aspects of corporate issues and social context.
The new Swatch hardly is interested in tell any narrative and there are no captions included too. It is all visualization essence of elation rather than fun and frolic as in the case of the older advertisement. This advertisement is more about impact rather than message. The influence of Latino culture is vibrant all over the frame with colorful flamingo dancers and the mystic lights are influence of the magic reality of Gabriel Garcia Marquez unlike the flat and normal lights and colors of the older version. In the background, there are high rises, synonym of US urban life and there is only one use of letters. It conveys the arrival or launch of the Spring-Summer collection of 2008. The entire essence of this new advertisement is very rich, exotic in nature. It is as if to indicate that the new version of the watches are for the neo-IT rich professionals who are young, upward mobile, classically tasteful but still represent the general population. This is the biggest difference between the two eras.
However, all these aspects have been changed by the new media. Advancement in internet has given rise to applications that support sophisticated business transactions over the internet. An essential change in how organizations and their customers collaborate and interact is possible with the new technology, which is now available as the advent of the internet is having a major impact on the way communication between companies and consumers is being conducted and maintained in the evolving new marketing approaches. The role of Twitter in news media has evolved a concept where communications has become more interactive process than ever before. This could be emphasized by mentioning the growing transmission of information among politicians, the news media and the public. This is a process that can be regarded as a process flowing down-wards from governing institutions towards citizens. This has also enabled horizontally in linkages among political actors, news people and general population at the same time.
One of the prime advantages of the Twitter is its user friendliness, where nay and everybody of the state can easily participate. The second advantage remains in the fact that this media can easily handle an infinite number of communications at the same time. The third and the most important feature of the Twitter is its speed. The speed at which this Twitter operates was unthinkable for past users. The last and not the least important feature of Twitter is its easy accessibility. Anyone from anywhere can access any written of multimedia related communication with absolute ease. This makes it more informative and the user is always readily informed and updated. All these advantages are used by advertisers by a great extent. There are two advertisements, Match.com and BeautifulPeople.com, associated with this internet social media that provides a good insight into the fact how advertisement industry is using the new media.
As the new media is very open to public yet individually private, the advertisers have used this advantage to the extreme. In the advertisement of Match.com there is a lusty young women boldly announcing that she is available for free chat and more once the potential customers logs in the website. This is a provoking approach with open use of sexuality that is otherwise not possible in any other form of media. The advertisement of the site ensures secret lust within a click of the mouse.
The other advertisement, also found in the Twitter, is BeautifulPeople.com. This is another dating site with a picture of several young people posed as angles in the scene Birth of Jesus. There too the lust and secret desire is very obvious and it also indicates a sign of group pleasure. The religious nature of the usage has no meaning for the advertiser and this is obvious for the advertisers of BeautifulPeople.com as in present day society, the destruction of traditional cultures in order to initiate them into the global monoculture is more subtle than it was in the past. Most corporate and government leaders do not intend to destruct traditional cultures; for the most part, they are often unaware that they are doing so. This lack of realization seems to be nurtured by the cult of specialization, which is ever-present in western society. This allows the tendency to destroy the cultural diversity of the world in an effort to spread and expand the global economy.
Finally, it would not be irrelevant to conclude that with the advent of information technology and internet it is almost impossible today to stay away from the concept of global monoculture. Be it Indonesia or western Africa, sooner or later the every aspect of human life and thought process would be included within the threshold of the ‘brave new global village’ obviously nurtured and edited in accordance to the western tradition and taste. The computer and technology revolution of the past twenty years have given executives even more reason to disrupt and destroy cultural diversity, attempting to do what is best for each society and the world, without, in fact, considering how these revisions affect each society. Nevertheless, values well fed and induced by global market economy injects us the benefits of an open world where all existing geological maps must be included into one brand name of culture and as the advertisements generally suggest- this is the ‘in-thing’ today.
To sum it up- it would be very relevant to state that in our all-utilitarian materialistic market economy driven needs of urban life the advertisements play a vital role. In this whole world of ‘earn to burn’ philosophy it is all but evident that we should be living in a virtual make believe world of utopia more like Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’. Down the ages of history, all the human clans ever came to existence created utopia in accordance to their own culture and taste and the global village and hybrid culture a single monoculture is developing. The new media advertisements of Match.com and BeautifulPeople.com are indication of this single global culture of boldness in sexuality.