The Role of Digital Advertising in Shaping Ideals and Consumption Choices in the Digital Era: Effectiveness of Digital Advertisements

The Role of Digital Advertising in Shaping Ideals and Consumption Choices in the Digital Era: Effectiveness of Digital Advertisements

Lilit Baghdasaryan (Northumbria University, London, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0131-3.ch013

Abstract

Digital advertising is one of the most dominant elements of a communication mix. Consumption choices refer to the journey where consumers make decisions based on the problem-solving attributes of the products and services. The choices are conditioned with the reality shaped around us and social processes that impose ideal, self-identity, self-concept, ideal self, gender identities, and consumer cultures via visual digital designs and celebrity portrayals. Organisations aim to build digital advertisement strategies and create awareness of certain goods and services, but at the same time, the advertisement plays a significant role in generating new needs, new identities for consumers, and new role expectations. Digital technologies enable marketers to predict consumption behaviour and measure the consumer responses on key metrics of advertisement effectiveness.
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Introduction

Advertisement is a paid communication to announce and persuade customers that some product, services or ideas are available for sales. Citing American Marketing Association, Yakup (2011) defined advertising as ‘the placement of announcements and persuasive messages in time or space purchased in any of the mass media by an organization with a purpose to inform and/ or persuade target market or consumers about their products, services, organizations, or ideas’. The definition highlights many elements or characteristic features of an advertisement; however, the main purpose is informing and persuading. Informing and persuading requires crossing the boundaries of attentions and perceptions of the target consumers. Thus, the informing and persuading requires meeting the needs of attentions and favorable evaluations for the perceptions. The favorable evaluations happen if something fits with consumer’s personal values systems Thus the effective advertisements tend to fit with customers values, believes and identities. The consumers will like a product or advertisement if it is congruent with the consumers# value systems and self-identities and desired self-images.

Advertising is one of the most dominant elements of a communication mix in marketing (Camilleri, 2018). Digital advertisements: is a paid form of communications, placed in an online, digital and virtual ecosystems in order to inform and persuade target consumers about a product, service or idea. Advertisement using digital technology is transforming the traditional advertisement industry. The advertisements use ‘visual design’ to aesthetics in an inspirational manner to attract viewers’ attention to affect perception, persuasion, and ultimately behavior . This way the advertisement influence consumers visual values and visual cultures. The digital media has provided a lot of opportunities for marketers to create’ effective ‘visual design’.

The digital transformation enables marketers not just to track but also predict consumption behaviour (Erevelles, Fukawa, and Swayne, 2016). he ideological consumption structures or system of meanings are translated to consumers through the identities and lifestyle ideals portrayed in mass media and advertising (Üstüner and Holt, 2007). This has been widely observed through the exposure of identities on social media channels (Tuten, 2017; Ashley and Tuten, 2015; Bobkowski, Shafer and Ortiz, 2016). The self -concept is ‘ the totality of the individual’s thoughts, perceptions, feelings and subjective evaluations that have reference to oneself as an object of thought (Yu, 2014). The advertisements’, other people and the media can influence one’s subjective evaluation of self. The research in marketing and advertisements have highlighted the importance of considerations of self-concept, self-evaluation, and self-comparison, etc. in consumer decision making(Ruiz and Sicilia 2004. DeBeer et al. 1973, Hong and Zinkhan 1995 & Malhotra 1988, etc. were cited by (Yu, 2014)). Also social comparison theory (Festinger (1954) argues that people make their decisions based on social comparison with others or role models (Yu, 2014)). There can be a number of motives for social comparison such as self-knowledge, role congruity, self-evaluations, self-improvement, self-enhancement, or improving self-image or self-status. And acceptance by others (reflective appraisals) The advertisement or social media is often driven to use and portraits role models. Celebrities, ideals, etc. to market and promote the image, awareness, and identity of their products and services. Thus, the advertainment can have an effect on our values, believes, roles, norms, status, customs, and bahaviours. All those are essential elements of one culture. Hence it can be inferred that advertisement has some role in influencing customers; cultures.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Digital Advertisements: Is a paid form of communications, placed in an online, digital and virtual ecosystems in order to inform and persuade target consumers about a product, service, or idea.

Self-Concept: Individual’s self-concept is the end product of a process of reflection on oneself as an object, thus the self-concept is one’s totality of feelings, and thoughts having references to oneself as an object.

Gender identity in Advertisements: The portrayals of a gender-specific image, visual displays, values, customers, and role identity and socially constructed expectations, etc. in an advertisement, which may impel consumers to identify themselves with the gender image shown in the advertisements.

Consumer Cultural Theory (CCT): The consumer cultural theory (CCT) is a family of perspectives that explores the dynamic relationships between consumer actions, the marketplace, and consumer cultural meanings.

Visual Culture Theory (VCT): Visual culture theory is the understanding of how or what images communicate and how consumers decode those images and reproduce meanings.

Visual Designs: The visual designs are some total of form, role models, shade, color, saturation, depth, and motion that is used to creating meaning or constructing a persuasive argument for moving a specific audience. The advertisements use ‘visual design’ to aesthetics in an inspirational manner to attract viewers’ attention to affect perception, persuasion, and ultimately behavior.

Self-Esteem: Self-esteem is the overall evaluations of one-self on emotional or affective dimension and rating oneself having; a sense of power, sense of self-worth, self-competence, or efficacy, self-virtue, or moral worth.

Self-Identity: Self-identity is about awareness and believes about self as an object or being. Self-identities are viewed by the individual as internalized roles, also known as role identity.

Consumer Culture: A consumer culture signifies a social arrangement in which markets mediate a relationship among the ways of life, lived culture, social resources, and the symbolic or material resources. Thus, a consumer culture is jointly saclike constructed culture (of overlapping, flued, distributed and collective meanings of values, norms, even conflicting practices, identities,) based on the markets, commercially produced images, texts, and objects.

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