Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Influential Athletes

     Sports have became a big part of the American culture. Whatever sport you follow, you root for "your team,"and in away by playing for a specific city each team has a target market. People look up to athletes as role models and a lot of people are inspired by some athletes. I've found that companies using athletes are target marketing, such as the ad below for Hanes.

Michael Jordan in an advertisement for Hanes.
     This is ties into Joseph Turow's essay "Targeting a New World," because being an athlete or a fan of Michael Jordan is part of someone's lifestyle.

     Tattoos have became mainstream in society,and now they have became very popular among professional athletes. If you're watching basketball, baseball, boxing, or football you will see a lot of tattoos. In John Leo's "The Modern Primitives" he describes how we have a cultural crisis at hand. Body-modification has spread, but you rarely see athletes with piercings. Here is a picture of the athlete who really brought tattoos and piercings to the public eye.

Dennis Rodman

     Dennis Rodman is a prime example of what John Leo would call a member of the body-modification movement. In Stephanie Dolgoff's essay "Tattoo Me Again and Again"she described how each one of her tattoos represented an event in her life. Dennis Rodman, like Dolgoff, is the type of person who is who he is and proud of it regardless of what others think. I'm sure that he would agree with Dolgoff in that his reasons for getting his tattoos make sense to him and that's all that matters. He didn't have the best reputation in the NBA, he was always looked at as a loose canon. Regardless of his actions on the court, he represented a change in professional sports with his tattoos, piercings, and dyed hair. Now if a player dyes his hair, has tattoos, and/or has piercings they don't stand out like Rodman once did. This supports John Leo's theory of people in the body-modification are having to go to extremes to stand out from the crowd now, and maybe in some ways it may represent a lack of power in willing to change the way things our. Cultural crisis or just modern society, either way athletes are influencing us more and more through the media.

Heres a link of an article discussing how athletes are being used in the media for advertisement purposes.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Skullcandy's Target Audience

     Music is a big part of our culture. In a way what you listen to represents a part of who you are. This advertisement above depicts Kevin Durant wearing Skullcandy headphones. This ad is targeting basketball fans. It probably leans towards young men because Kevin Durant is a young basketball player who was a big part of this years U.S.A. Team that won the gold medal. Kevin Durant isn't the only basketball player they  have sponsored. They have used a lot of famous young professional basketball players to make basketball fans want to buy Skullcandy headphones.


I believe that young men  have become Skullcandy's primary target.

     Skullcandy has a not only a basketball team, but a skateboarding team as well. I'm a big basketball fan and I was a sponsored skateboarder and I know that a majority of basketball fans and skateboarders are young guys.

     I remember meeting Eric Koston (the one with the hat that's not backwards) and I can tell you that everyone in line to meet Koston was a young man. 

     As a skateboarder and a basketball fan I find these ads to be effective towards their target audience. I was in Best Buy when I stopped by the headphone section. My cheap headphones died out on one side so I needed new headphones, but I didn't want to shell out the money to get Beats so I bought a Skullcandy headphones. So far the headphones have been pretty durable with decent quality. I found the Skullcandy headphones to be worth the $30 compared to Beats $100 or more headphones. Maybe they know that some young men don't want to spend a lot of money on headphones or can't afford a more expensive brand such as Beats.

(Remember I'm talking about headphones, not earbuds.)

     I'm definitely part of Skullcandy's target audience. Skullcandy may be narrowing down their target audience, but it seems like the more these advertisements narrow down their audience the more personal their ads become.

Advertisement's Message Dissected

     Everyday we are surrounded by thousands of ads telling you that you will be better off with their product rather than without it. These ads appear on television, buses, billboards, online, and it's come to the point that ads will follow you wherever you go.

    These ads are always portraying a beautiful skinny young woman or a tall, dark, and handsome man who's also buff. They want you to believe that you will benefit from their product and that you will be closer to becoming whoever they are depicting in their ad.

     As humans we are always striving to be better than we are and that's the bait the advertisement companies use to lure us in. People can't be perfect and to me that means that our possibilities in life are limitless.

     Who would have thought that the annoying commercials screaming for our attention everyday could symbolize limitless possibilities in life. They tell you that you aren't perfect and once you realize that perfection isn't possible you realize that their claims are dramatically exaggerated. There is no product that can change who you are, but only what you have.

     Persuasion and manipulation are advertisements weapons, it's up to you to remember that all of these ads hire models who make a living off of their looks. Appearance is something you are (usually) born with and products may claim to benefit your overall look, but it's the identity that remains the same. It's your personality that makes you who you are.

     Remember next time you see a commercial that you aren't perfect. You will never be perfect and that's what makes life so AMAZING. Since perfection is out of reach, there is always room for improvement.