This short answer explains the impact that advertising has, in making society materialistic.
Do advertisements make society materialistic?
Advertising is the activity or profession of producing information for promoting the sale of commercial products or services. Many companies will hire promotional companies in order to deliver advertisements of new products to gain sales and therefore increase profits.
Through constant global advertising, extreme purchasing and the plentiful accumulation of objects, the general population, more specifically the younger generation, are adopting materialistic values. These materialistic values are being forced upon the younger members of society via advertisements which persuade consistent purchasing of products and also encourages a ‘throwaway society’. As advertising is constantly surrounding society, materialism can begin at a very young age. With regards to children, advertising can even harm the healthy development of a child. Because of the fact that the majority of children believe what they see and hear, they also believe the product being advertised will provide benefits and pleasures that advertising promises. This can be linked with an example from chocolate adverts such as Milkybar and the ‘Milkybar Kid’ character.
Television advertisements, magazines, the use of social media via the Internet are very popular and powerful ways that organisations use to reach their specific audiences and demographics. The images displayed in the media are soaked in materialism. Materialistic people feel that by purchasing products will make them much happier, and this view is further encouraged through mediums of advertising.
However, it can be argued that advertising and materialism are not new phenomena – as they date back hundreds of years. In this regard it can be questioned whether advertising causes materialism, or materialism is a natural feature of human society. The desire to gather wealth and resources can be seen throughout recorded history, and far predating modern advertising methods.