Whether or not the feeling is justified, people have a love/hate relationship with advertising. Indeed, the loudest ones are the people who hate it.
Why? Several reasons. The simple notion is that they believe marketers have the power to manipulate them into buying something. They believe that certain services should be free without advertising subsidizing, therefore hiding the actual cost.
Others think that advertising is just wasting space without adding value.
Though we disagree with nearly all of those remedial assumptions, we are happy to admit that advertising can do more to improve our quality of life.
It can create and maintain access utility.
A TEDxDenmark talk we watched showcased the power of advertising. A young gentleman started a company called Free Bikes, and what it does is fairly simple; they provide free bikes to Danish students for a period of time, and once that time expires, the bike is sent to students in Ghana for them to get to school.
How is it free? Free Bikes partners with businesses who are willing to put their advertising on the bike. So the bike becomes a mobile talking piece.
Talk about a win-win-win situation: students in Denmark get free bikes, businesses get new access to different customer bases, and students in Ghana are able to get to school.
Advertising is the glue that holds this venture together.
How tiresome is it to hear people complain about the evils of advertising? It seems that they are not being creative enough.
Advertising is a powerful medium. It's time for us to tap in to more of its potential.
Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.
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