Kid Kustomers by Eric Schlosser – Article Review

Last Updated on December 12, 2016

Eric Schlosser’s article titled Kid Kustomers discusses the today’s advertising companies and their attractive ads to pursue the children for materialistic gains. The article discusses the impact of kids-focused advertising.

Today, advertising is omnipresent and marketers find ways to instill their brand. Gone are the decades when advertising was meant for adults. Today, kids are the primary target for advertisers. Most of the companies have started focusing on kids because of increasing media habituation. They try to establish their brand their persuasion of these little customers.

Eric mentions that kid-aimed marketing strategies cause adverse behaviors on children. According to him, companies use dubious ads to promote their products. They scrutinize the working class parents to compensate into spending more money on children for spending less time on them. Moreover, these companies are aware of the kid’s mentality and work on cleverly to get into their heads. They persuade them through their enticing ads to nag their parents for buying the products. This is how advertising marketers turn kids into ‘surrogate salesmen’ for their businesses. Eric says that they utilize the ‘pester power’ of the kids. They indirectly create the behavior of nagging among the kids.

On speaking about the negative impacts of advertising on children, Eric cites the cigarette and alcohol company Ads. Such ads affect the behavior of kids leading to increased underage drinking and smoking habits. Also, companies use kid-attracting characters to drive their ads. However, it is not possible literally to wipe out the ads from TV. Even though legal measures are taken, today’s commercials are far from being banned.

The marketing strategies of the companies are focused on the children’s behavior and tastes. They survey and learn their attitudes and apply them in their advertisements. Usually, to attract the kids, companies use animals and cartoon characters as a way to pursue them. When food products are marketed this way, it causes adverse health effects on them. Fast foods, candies, sugared drinks, and cereals affect the future generation’s overall health.

Though some ads instill positive beliefs, it can still have very little impact on them. The attractiveness of the ads matters a lot for the kids rather than the product itself. He concludes that advertising companies should come forward to promote positive attitudes rather than trying to gain benefit from kids’ nagging power.