Friday, September 19, 2008

Are you pulled in by marketing?

This afternoon I was at the grocery store when a display of Halloween-themed boxes of General Mills cereals caught my eye. I don't usually eat cereal, but it was hard to resist the box of Trix cereal with a brightly colored picture of the rabbit wearing a mask on the front.

The Federal Trade Commission has reported that the food and beverage industries pull in their greatest profits from marketing to kids. Most of the money they spend goes to marketing soda, fast food--and breakfast cereal. Companies market their products through television ads, websites, online games, and promotions, all designed to make you want their product.

While many companies (including General Mills) have recently pledged to limit how they market their products to children, it's still important to be more aware of how companies try to sell their products to you. Do you girls often find yourself wanting a product after seeing an advertisement for it? Do you visit company websites (such as General Mills)? What features on these websites do you spend time looking at? Are you often attracted to a product because of its packaging?

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