Does Advertising affect behavior or is it the other way around?


I’ve been wondering for a while now – how is it that a majority (cannot think of too many otherwise) of the advertisements for motocycles in India depict riders who seem to convey that they are taking part in a race?

I’ve also seen that most riders on the road have little or no concern for other users of the roads – while this is true of a majority of the road users in India, this is more so the case with riders on two wheels. I was watching an advertisement for a two wheeler which shows the rider leaping across a chasm – and conveniently adds the tag line that these “stunts” are performed by professionals and that the normal road user should not attempt any of those stunts. As one who has over the past few years been intrigued by the way in which the human brain functions – and thereby directly affects the results that we see in our lives, I believe that advertising subliminally programs the brain to function in a certain way.

If that be the case, what is is that makes the companies and the advertising agencies come up with such themes? Is is that this becomes an extension of our tryst with movies and transports the watcher to experience the ride for themselves? Does the drive for success – measured purely in “economic and commercial” terms override all other responsibilities that everyone of us have? Where does “free will” end – if a person is “inconsiderate” on the road, is it also possible that the person is “inconsiderate” in life?

It is probably appropriate to quote Shakespeare here and end this inaugural “blog” of mine:

“It is neither good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” – William Shakespeare

GOD bless us all!

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