November 03, 2015

How Advertising Creates Overconsumption

Not everyone notices the role of advertising in creating clutter. It takes an marketing expert to point out how vulnerable people are to advertising messages that create links between our emotional needs and shopping desires. Former advertising writer Greg Foyster puts it this way:

This is now advertising’s role in the economy – to convince people that non­material happiness can be gained through material belongings.

Desires for material things have limits – most people really only want or need one dishwasher, or one or two cars – but desire for emotional needs like status, love, acceptance and autonomy are bottomless. Tying material goods to nonmaterial desires ensures people are never satisfied with what they have. It’s how we’ve convinced some of the most materially rich citizens in history that they don’t have enough.

Read the whole story at The Guardian: