Seminar on contemporary issue Named PESTER POWER (Children influencing parent’s buying decision) JECRC Business School JECRC

Business School, Sitapura, jaipur
In The Partial fulfillment of the requirement of M-207 Award of the degree of master of business administration 2010-2012 Submitted by: HIMADRI SATI MBA II SEM (JBS) Submitted to: THE DIRECTOR


I take this opportunity to thank my guide who apart from being a constant source of inspiration and encouragement also provided me with his timely help and scholarly ideas in giving final shape to this report.

I also thank the college library and Computer lab of S.I.M.C.S. which provided me many books, round the clock internet facility to satisfy my thirst of knowledge related to my subject matter.

I also express my heartily gratitude to all my friends for their kind support. It was due to their valuable guidance and support that helped me to complete the report with a lot of learning.


2 Pester Power effect of Advertising

3 Pester Power effect of Advertising


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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Introduction Pester Power


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Catering to the Little Customers-the Kids Some Research findings Drivers of Pester Power How Marketers Target Kids The Age Of Pester Power Could Be Over Parenting: How to handle pester power Tips on tackling pester power Bibliography

4 Pester Power effect of Advertising

whereas older children were better at self-promotion and included only positive descriptions. Levin. Eight year olds’ ability to selectively self promote suggests that this is the age when children are also able to appreciate that advertisers try to influence us with persuasive messages.Introduction The effects of television advertising Television is a major part of children’s lives in the Western world today. In the UK children spend an average of two and a half hours each day watching TV and 63% have their own TV set (Livingston & Bovill. renders them more vulnerable to selling messages. i. Being able to recognize that advertisements differ from programmes appears to emerge early on in development. entertain or inform viewers. Prior to this children regard advertisements as simply announcements designed to help. A lack of this awareness in younger children. Somewhat surprisingly. 1999). the more likely they are to believe that advertisements always tell the truth . For example. understanding of persuasive intent. say that it is not until 8 years old that children begin to understand the selling purpose of an advertisement.e. Levin et al. Younger children included negative as well as positive information. In making the decision not to allow advertising aimed at children. whereas the kind of healthy skepticism which is needed to resist commercial pressure requires far more sophisticated levels of understanding. Younger children. who do not know that selling implies an exchange of money for goods (and an opportunity for profit). resulting in higher trust in the advertiser. in the Aloise-Young 13-year old children knew that advertisements ‘‘wanted to sell you something’’ with no variation by age. and are unaware that advertisements are motivated out of a desire for profits. Petros & Petrella (1982) found that children as young as 3 were able to make the distinction but had no understanding of selling motives of advertisers. (1986) claimed to have found that 80% of 4. who believe that adults do not lie and the younger the child is. 2. Understanding of persuasive intent Young children do not realise that a message can portray only positive information. The cognitive skills which children lack. children were asked to present a description of themselves in order to get picked for a fictitious team. are unlikely to recognise advertisers’ motives 5 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Allied to this is the authoritative status of television messages for young children. Consumer literacy Young children have a limited understanding of commercial markets. Greenberg et al. 1. . consumer literacy and perception of realism are discussed further here.

This reality perception is important because television that is perceived as real has a greater impact on children than if it is judged unreal (Berry & Asamen. thus neutralizing some of the powerful messages their children are exposed to. Children’s memory for advertisements is a very complex issue and one which has been investigated using a variety of methodologies. as suggested. children’s lack of awareness about the motives of television advertisers does not prevent the. the children tried to clear it up. In television commercials techniques are frequently employed to enhance the appearance of a product. but these have usually been 6 Pester Power effect of Advertising . usually by employing a forced choice test. 1993). Adults know that the sparkle on the newly-cleaned floor in the TV commercial is unlikely to be matched in reality. a successful advertisement is one which is memorable since there is usually a delay between seeing an advertisement and remembering to buy. may still have left a memory trace. Thus a number of strategies and cognitive abilities need to be in place before the child is fully aware of the selling motives of the advertiser. nonetheless. it is probably around age 13 or 14 that young people understand consumer markets and acquire a healthy skepticism towards the truthfulness of product claims. There is little reliable data available on co-viewing although it has been found that children who watch more commercial television had parents who were less concerned about the negative effects of watching television and perceived less need to control their child’s viewing (Gunter & McAleer. After the age of four children develop the cognitive skills. Parents have a r&e to play in this. or request. Perception of realism. Nonetheless. which helps them to distinguish reality from fantasy. In Flavell’s study he found that these young children believed a bowl of popcorn would spill if the set was turned upside down. including a theory of mind. Discrepancies in the results of studies into the age at which children can remember television advertisements may be due to the limitations of each of these methodologies. By watching television with their child they can help them to understand advertisers’ motives and the difference between appearances and reality. But before the age of four or five children are more heavily affected by production factors and do not understand that appearances can differ from reality. For the advertiser. 1997). And when Jaglom and Gardner (1981) showed two and three year olds an egg breaking on television. the product. Evidence from psychological studies suggest that these abilities emerge at different points in development and that full understanding of advertisers’ motives is likely to be a process which takes a number of years.Therefore. Surveys suffer from lack of verification of the information gained and the fact that children are often overconcerned with giving the ‘right’ answers: Younger children are also likely to be unable to recall brand names which. young children will believe that a product is exactly as it appears and not realise that the advertisement was created to promote it in the best possible way. 3. Studies which test recognition of products get around this problem. may render the child more susceptible. commercial messages influencing their preferences and. Without an awareness of production techniques and the representational nature of television.

Thus it overcomes the lack of ecological validity which laboratory experiments suffer from. the study also makes use of the real time frame between exposure to the advertisements and the making of requests. since virtually all children in the UK write a letter to Santa each year.conducted in laboratory settings and suffer from a lack of ecological validity. It assesses the effects of toy advertising by looking at a behaviour which many children engage in spontaneously. although perhaps with a low recall of brand names. has upon children below the age of seven. By looking at the under-sevens’ requests in their letters to Santa. As the literature has shown. this study therefore aims to discover whether there is a relationship between young children’s exposure to commercial television and requests for advertised products. 7 Pester Power effect of Advertising . it is less subject to the failings of survey methods where misunderstandings about questions can produce inaccurate data. Children from poorer families may have been socialised not to ask their parents for expensive toys. The study also employs a novel method which overcomes many of the methodological limitations of earlier research. it is not complicated by the financial status of the children’s parents. or to recreate the type of context in which children typically express a product preference. yet may feel these constraints do not apply to their requests to Santa. By collecting children’s letters at the beginning of December. Furthermore. asking for toys in a letter to Father Christmas. Both types of studies fail to successfully emulate the time lapse that can occur between exposure to an advertisement and its recall. This would lead us to expect these children to have a high Vulnerability to advertising. this is the age group who are likely to have higher trust. Finally. The current study looks at the impact which toy advertising. The data on viewing habits also reveal whether children watch alone or with a parent and whether this affects their susceptibility to advertising. It also goes beyond measuring which advertised products children recognise or recall and tells us what they actually want. and also obtaining a measure of their television viewing habits. By comparing letters written by children in the UK with those written by Swedish children it also asks whether their ban on toy advertising means that children ask for less. in the run-up to Christmas. when toy advertising has been intensifying for a number of weeks. lower recall and lower understanding of commercial messages than older children.

" This is not to say that Lauren is a junk-food addict. 'Mac-a-don-ulds'. Pester power TV junk food advertising is being blamed for the ever increasing number of young. which came with a cheeseburger. 8 Pester Power effect of Advertising . It shows how powerful advertising is. TV advertising for fast food has influenced Lauren from a young age. we drove past McDonald's and she pointed and said. A lobby group is stepping up its campaign to ban the ads. It was definitely from TV. only orders pizza because of the "interesting vegetables on it". She was too young to have peer-pressure influence. The ad said you could put it in the water and it can glow in the dark. oil-cooked fries and a sugary soft drink in the popular Happy Meal. According to her mother. She was just learning to speak. obese Australians." she says. One was Bruce. I really wanted the squirt character. Charmaine Camilleri reports. Eight-year-old Lauren Merrington had one mission on her special trip to McDonald's — to get one of the limitededition Finding Nemo toys that she had seen on TV a few nights before. Julia Merrington. My husband and I were horrified. She has fast food just once a month and. "I wanted the whole set. Kids represent an important demographic to marketers because they have their own purchasing power. Image: Composite "My friend nearly had the whole collection. they influence their parents' buying decisions and they're the adult consumers of the future.Pester Power! Pester Power is the name given to Marketing Techniques which encourage children to nag their parents to purchase a particular product." Lauren got her toy. "When Lauren was about two years old. unlike many kids her age. one was Nemo.

And that can be for life. When you're tired. they would have seen more than 100. spokesman for the Australian Medical Association." she says. spent $35-40 million and Cadbury Schweppes. a lot of it is advertised on TV. "Socially. "As a parent. exposing them to 30 food ads per session and around 10. says parents have a responsibility to monitor children's food intake. joint problems and cancer. stroke. "We're not seeing obesity contained. but the toys offered at fast food chains make their meals enticing. According to Nielsen Media Research. "By the time children leave secondary school. I have had teenagers come in who have Type 2 diabetes. "I'm sure there are parents who go down the easy road and say. you give in. children watch two hours and 30 minutes of TV per day." Medical and health groups say such advertising is fuelling the obesity epidemic. Dr Michael Rice.000 ads for junk food. because it's easier than fighting. they will have spent about as much time in front of the TV as they would have spent at school." he says. $25-30 million. Every year. 9 Pester Power effect of Advertising . according to the National Obesity Taskforce — that's more than triple the population of Tasmania. In that time.900 per year. KFC and Pizza Hut. 'Can we get this?' and of course.5 million young Australians under the age of 18 are now overweight or obese. McDonald's Corporation's total media expenditure for 2002 was $40-45 million. Picture: Rebecca Hallas On average. it was mostly in people over 40 years old. says the impact on young people is stark. of Tricon Restaurants.But. More than 1. it's. Ten years ago. "Advertising high-calorie foods is not responsible action. of the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA). It's out of control and increasing. I've been guilty of it. Only one in four will promote a healthy product." says Swinburn. "In my practice. advertisers spend huge dollars on media campaigns worth millions in revenue for TV networks. but advertisers have a job to be responsible." Tania Ferraretto. according to Young Media Australia. Lauren Merrington loves eating healthily. have been working full-time and want to quickly shop. Every time. children can be left out in their peer groups and their selfesteem can be affected. says Merrington. 'Yes'." She says obesity is also related to conditions including heart disease. I have a battle every time we go to the supermarket. it has not been easy.

" says spokeswoman Kay McNiece. The messages are about fun. The coalition stepped up pressure on Australian governments last November with the release of its report Children's Health or Corporate Wealth?." says Barbara Biggins. Despite calls from health experts. "Generally. which says that large volumes of TV ads contribute to an obesity-promoting environment. the worse their diet was. In Australia. there's actually no fruit in it." says Mehta. no recommendation for bans or restrictions was made in the Obesity Taskforce's final report released late last year. It also quotes a 2003 study commissioned by the British Food Standards Authority that found food promotion affected children's preferences. sugar and salt to be rescheduled in adult viewing times. traced almost 550 ethnically diverse students." she says. but then when you look at the product. published in last December's Pediatrics. "Adults can make informed decisions." study author Renee Boyton-Jarrett recently told Health on the Net Foundation. researchers at the Harvard Medical School in Boston. They determined that the more hours children spent watching TV. aged about 12." Others question whether a ban would work. "The ad says the product is fruit-flavoured and it shows pictures of fruit. at this stage. Critics also claim that some food advertisements are simply misleading. whereas children are manipulated. purchase behaviour and consumption.) "Taking ads off TV is not considered the most valuable thing to do. Mehta says children are seduced into buying products. Massachusetts. over a 19-month period.In one of the newest studies on the topic. The Australian Association of National Advertisers (AANA) says a 1994 UK study found that TV advertising influenced just 5 per cent of family food choices. "The taskforce. getting friends — and that's what children take literally. CFAC — whose members include the Australian Medical Association. that was associated with further declines in fruit and vegetable consumption. with mothers at the top of the list (20 per cent). Nutrition Australia and the Australian Consumers Association — wants ads for products high in fat. followed by the children (13 per cent). "As the television viewing increased over time. 10 Pester Power effect of Advertising . The report points out that there is about an 80 per cent chance of an overweight or obese child being overweight or obese at the age of 20. has no concrete evidence that TV food advertising has an effect on children's obesity levels. cool giveaways. (The Federal Government set up the taskforce in November 2002 to combat Australia's worsening childhood obesity problem. the ads don't talk about nutritional value. of Young Media Australia.

a campaign that was a rage." About 80 per cent of the company's media expenditure has gone to promote the healthy range since August. Not only that. the brainchild behind the campaign. and harbours big ambitions for its little ones. says Julia Merrington. upwardly mobile. and titled The Myth about Children's Dietary Choice. the usage has reached beyond the basic need categories. They have the purchasing power. whether they want their child to have an apple or fries. The downside is that their involvement with a particular brand becomes temporary. "Factors including mothers. ‘Lego’ has understood this very well and introduced the concept of continuous innovation in their products with building blocks. parents are more oriented to investing in children. Thanks to Kidstuff’s Promotions and Events (KPE). the choice of computer is dependent on kids. Britannia even launched a new biscuit called Multi-vita just for the kids aged between one to three years. 'No' to your child. Kids want more and they want it now! The middle class family is value-oriented." Marketing to the kids could be your passport to growth. 11 Pester Power effect of Advertising . "A change for good. "Advertisers have a right to advertise. "Let the parents make the choice. Companies are using this segment to rake in profits “Britannia Khao. Kids change dramatically as they grow and are notoriously unpredictable. McDonald's last year launched a new range of salads and reduced TV advertising to children by 40 per cent. But educating children about healthy lifestyles is useless unless the family supports it." says AANA chairman Ian Alwill. older siblings and peers are far more influential than advertising. in food choice and family diet. Russo says. What does all this imply? Where are marketers heading? The kids’ market has grown by leaps and bounds – an indicator being the increased usage of basic need categories. especially among the kids during the 1999 cricket World Cup." she says. Whether they are successful or not is due to the decisions the parents make. "It's all very well for the parents to say." Some food companies have listened to concerns. Kids being the centre of a family’s aspirations. "Advertising censorship would not impact on obesity trends. but you can always say. World Cup Jaao . In most US homes for instance. hence marketers will have to offer paths of continuous upgradation to retain them. Britannia’s products were picked up from the shelves like hot cakes." says Guy Russo.The study was reported in an article in the international advertising industry magazine Admap. CEO of McDonald's Australia. 'They made me buy it'.

the child’s pester power becomes inversely proportional to the time available with parents. This is one sector that will boom further. education and variety. i. This unfortunately for parents. Parents react hysterically to brands that try to hook their little ones. However. Wipro’s ‘Baby Soft’ proved doomsayers wrong in its ability to compete against Johnson & Johnson. No mother would like to be told that the knowledge imparted to her down the years. Sometimes. With the increase in number of working couples. Raju has outgrown. to dispense advice on teething problems in infants.The marketer must capitalise on this aspect and design baby/kids’ products. they get what they want! Impulse purchases due to POP promotions also play an important role. a marketer must try to develop a strategy. achieving a high involvement relationship with both parents and the kid is a priority. so that next time they are out with their parents. Build brand equity and you will build profits!. Considering the above. to explore his hidden talent. which targets the kids and influences them totally. brands that try to dislodge conventional wisdom should be careful while targeting conservative mothers.friendly and of superior quality. Wise parents allow their babies to follow their instincts. Women may be a marketer’s delight. within safe boundaries. Parents prefer safe toys that last long. 12 Pester Power effect of Advertising . They might buy a product if it shows promise of satisfying or quietening them temporarily. preferring to recycle old stuff when needed. Advice to young mothers helps sell baby products especially when endorsed by a doctor. Though the result often is boredom and breakage.e. translates into destruction of toys.For most marketers. This was done by using a renowned paediatrician in its advertising. which offer value for money. ‘Lego’ claims to provide all this and more. too. a greater degree of creative freedom is given to the child. The toy market in India is huge. 350 crore. by her mother and grandmother was wrong. Montu wears the clothes that his older brother. where the children harass their parents to purchase products they want. but with the arrival of the second child she becomes a budget-conscious housewife. The toys in demand are ones that offer fun. leading to more purchases. estimated at Rs. are eco. Children being vulnerable are easily influenced by ads on television and this activates “pester power”.

Bajaj Auto Ltd. Created by Lowe Mumbai. Bajaj's Caliber 115cc has always been positioned on the emotional platform and Hoodibabaa was a new term to express the `wow!' qualities of the brand." In fact. "We have used animation to break through the clutter. Nobody had done animation films for a serious product like motorcycles. Ravichandran. so we. this is the first time that an animation film has been made for the rather `serious' motorcycle category. According to R. along with our agency. such as biscuits. managing to save his son and also trap the lion back into its cage. Brand Services Director. L. Vice-President (Business Development & Marketing). the TV commercial shows the father as the hero riding the bike to rescue his son from a lion which has escaped from its cage. "Animation films are possibly seen in children's categories. TAKING the Hoodibabaa campaign for Bajaj's Caliber 115 cc forward is an animation commercial.For more pester power Purvita Chatterjee Bajaj hopes its animation campaign building on the Hoodibabaa promise for Caliber will help it add volumes. Added Indraneel Ghosh. The purpose was to leverage pester power to an extent that the child could convince adults into buying the brand. explains Lowe. 13 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Lowe." Continuing with the father-son emotional bond from its previous Hoodibabaa films. decided to try it out for the first time in the motorcycle category.

notes that Millennial Teens influence more than $50 billion adult spending every year and pester an adult 25 times on an average before the desired product or experience is finally bequeathed. according to a new survey by www. The power children have. their pester power is inversely proportionate to the time available with parents. Bajaj Auto has been trying to gather prominence in the executive segment of motorcycles with its Caliber 115 cc and Wind 125 cc models. there has to be in place the entire collection of" says Ravichandran. There is an untiring wish list of food. Playstation. trendiest watch. fun. PC and that too ‘cool’ branded ones. Over 95% of kids have pestered their parents for a product promoted on TV. it believes the new campaign will add more volumes in this segment. the PBS documentary series. "Through this campaign we want to move a notch above our rivals. While the Hoodibabaa phrase has caught on and Bajaj Auto has managed to gather a combined 12 per cent share in the executive segment for both its brands. It has already allocated an ad budget of Rs 50 crore. Kids seem to want virtually ‘more’ of everything. rather than going straight to the mom. frequenting at Mc Donalds. school bag with Power Puff Girls on it. be they in terms of what to watch over TV or what to buy for themselves or what a household buys. Bajaj intends spending lavishly on its two brands in this segment. collectibles. Dad I want this” are the demands. Besides.Barbara A Martino (Advertising executive) Kids rule. fuelled by marketing tactics that erode the adult wallets. Their day begins with Tom and Jerry and ends with Dexter. Kid-fluence. With the executive segment (the Rs 40. by repeated nagging. The influence that the kids wield over purchase decisions in a household along with the nagging effect that they have on their parents is growing day by day. T 14 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Hero Honda dominates the segment with a 60 per cent share with brands such as Splendour and Passion. the ‘Nag’ Factor and ‘Pester Power’ “Mom I want this.raisingkids. of influencing their parents to buy advertised or fashionable items is called as Pester power. With the increase in the number of working couples. The bug is none other than Pester Power. Besides. Frontline. As of now. The marketers are relying on the kids to pester the mom to buy the product. television. gadgets and brands.The advertising account moved to Lowe last March with the re-launch of the Caliber 115 cc motorcycle in the form of the Hoodibabaa an independent mobile.000-plus range) being the fastest growing segment in motorcycles today. it also wants to upgrade the users of low-end bikes (the 100 cc segment) to the executive segment with its superior product-led features such as that of extra mileage and a quick pick-up.

Ashley. Britannia even launched a new biscuit called Multi-vita just for the kids aged between one to three years.T Catering to the Little Customers-the Kids There are numerous examples where the marketers are either innovating their offerings for the kids or re-positioning themselves to cater to the segment that is becoming influential in the family purchase decisions. A membership card records preferences such as styles and colors. giving each member an individual experience through special events. Thanks to Kidstuff’s Promotions and Events (KPE). The company wants to create an open communication channel through a website and build upon the relationship through it and the ZAPP! Club. so they get the feeling that they are shopping for themselves. the child can now avail of a personalized debit card. • Raymond eyes the Rs. Sports Illustrated and People have all launched kid and teen editions—which boast ads for adult related products such as minivans.)ZAPP! has tied up with Warner Brothers for the ‘Superman’ brand of clothing in India. Each of the stores comes with lots of space for kids to move around and choose from. World Cup Jaao . After complaints by the Consumer Education and Research Centre of Ahmedabad. It also allows kids to swipe their cards to see a customized version of themselves on a plasma screen at the entry of every store. • Horlicks repositioned itself as a ‘pleasurable nourisher for the entire family’. • The rising fad among kids towards toiletries and cosmetics has given birth to products targeted at children like L'Oréal Kids. • Novartis India tells school children that they need two calcium tablets (Calcium Sandoz) a day to develop healthy bones and sharp brain. 15 Pester Power effect of Advertising . ICICI has made a presence across the entire life cycle of a person. This is to cater to the aspirational and demanding kids by catching them young. Doctors are of the view that calcium Sandoz contained salts in addition to calcium carbonate and its reckless use by children who did not suffer from calcium deficiency might lead to kidney stones because of excessive intake of salts. 000 crore kids wear market with ZAPP! The first store in Ahmedabad followed by another in Bandra. Posh and Pixel — who have a different world on planet Zuto. Mumbai. especially among the kids during the 1999 cricket World Cup. (The name ZAPP! comes from the initials of the four cartoon characters — Zion.a campaign that was a rage. the brainchild behind the campaign. Novartis dropped the exaggerated promotional campaign it was conducting inside schools. Along with the account. • Magazines such as Time. The clothes are kept in such a way that kids of any height can pick them up.27. Britannia’s products were picked up from the shelves like hot cakes. Doing this. hotels and airlines. • ICICI has launched a special account for kids in association with cartoon network. • Britannia Khao.

Pester power: Can children influence papa's decisions? Nokia has a naughty eight-year-old girl looming large from the billboards thrusting the 3210 in your face. "Generation Next kids are well aware of what is happening in the marketplace. Onida's salesman goes blue in the face (literally) trying to convince his 10-year-old customer that the Candy brand does not come in a vanilla flavour. After all. Of course. Hence. So be it television sets. For instance. mummy.88 billion) toothpaste market. The pester power is best displayed when it comes to toys and games.48 billion) worth of business. 65 per cent of the business is estimated because of kids. the toddler crawls up with a tube of Boroline in its cute hands. children are well educated about the brands available and the prices. 41 per cent of the purchases are influenced by kids -. However. bhook lagi hain'' she knows what's cooking. the moot question is how far does the child's word go in the buying decision. In other words. This may not be such a surprise -. In the Rs 988 crore (Rs 9. it is very important for a marketer to understand the buying pattern before they really target the ads at children. When papa nicks his chin while shaving. marketers are realising that the road to a customer's heart (and mind) is the child at home.after all. where in a market of Rs 362 crore (Rs 3. Equus Advertising. whenever mom hears "mummy. it is the adult parent who spends the money and actually buys the product.i e Rs 148 crore (Rs 1. But what has changed in the last 10 years? Why are marketers suddenly concentrating on kids so much? Says Suhel Seth. So. children seem to have a say in it all. Marketing minds are finally taking kids seriously. Pinkis of every home. how real is pester power? A recent study by AC Nielsen reveals that children do have the ability to influence their parents's decisions. From cell phones. CEO. Millions are being splurged on striking the right chord with the Chunu. toothpaste. cellphones or the new video game in town. who else would decide between Barbie and GI Joe? But children can be quite persuasive even in more adult areas. Munnu. for they are exposed to a lot of advertising both on television and outdoors. cars and soaps to noodles and potato chips. At times the line is ambiguous in the kids-specific market too 16 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Papa finds it hard to decline his six-year-old's request to give half the school a ride back home in his squeaky new Fiat Uno.62 billion) .

Johnson & Johnson realised a couple of years ago that selling kids soap is not exactly child's play. J&J could not strike the right chord with kids despite the use of jazzy colours. Nestle or Candico find it easy to sell their products targeted at children because they are low-priced fast-moving consumables. companies such as Frito Lays. As far as their favourite sport shoe was concerned the choice was swadeshi again: 'Action'. However. We want to show the ease of use and the add-on features that make it exciting. "It is here that market behaviour becomes ambiguous. Explains marketing guru Shunu Sen. The company re-launched its Kids brand in a new star-shaped avatar in August to attract the little ones. You see.because these products may be premium priced and the parent my not be in a position to yield to the child's whims. about 43 per cent of Indian kids said Ruff 'n' Tuff." Nokia defends its using a child in its 3210 advertisement saying. Says Duncan Morris. or Y brand of soap because his daughter likes it. Videocon in consumer durables or Ruff n Tuff in apparel would do well to talk to the kids. and hence brands such as Onida. very often you will see children using our phones to play a game while their parents are busy with something else." Market studies have also shown that children are more tuned to swadeshi brands. consumer durables marketers are trying hard to influence children. J&J now plans to have intensive advertising and numerous activities involving kids to generate top of mind recall for its brand. "In India. this is not always true. be it career. "We want to stress on our human technology aspect. client services controller. AC Nielsen found that kids aged between 7 and 18 in India were definitely inclined towards swadeshi in terms of brand preferences. "Children are an important part of the 'family' for a marketer. Consider this: To the question 'Which is your favourite jeans brand'. a local brand from Arvind Mills. though for a consumer durables marketer children may not be the right bet. Ammirati Puris Lintas. our study shows that Indian children are the most decisive in their preferences." Hence. It is easy for a parent to decide on X candy because his child wants it. it is not totally foolish to target a bit of the ad spend at children. especially when your product is priced as high as Rs 28 for 75 gm. It would be a good idea for a toothpaste marketer to address the children." says Anita Pande. associate director (media research division) A C Nielsen. You see. But it is quite another issue if the child insists on Z brand of television. 17 Pester Power effect of Advertising . "We need to create a lot of excitement around the brand. Says Seth." Despite apprehension from market gurus. BPL. China.

"Children can be really specific in their tastes and preferences and sure have strong likes and dislikes. a majority of the children voted the Pepsi ad as their favourite. But. For instance. but they are confused pests and that makes them important and powerful!" 18 Pester Power effect of Advertising . "Kids may be confused. the kids were very specific and said 'idli'. and advertising has an impact on them." Adds he. during our survey. children from all over Asia responded 'vegetables'. whether advertisements really prompt children to buy a product is still ambiguous. For instance. but in India. but said Coca-Cola was their favourite drink!" As Seth puts it. when we asked what was the most hated food.most hated food or favourite drink. and this is important.

Link-ups with children's films and cartoon characters are another enormous money-spinner. This McDonald's Happy Meal. advertisers use famous pop stars such as S Club 7 and footballers such as David Beckham to entice children into wanting their products. Children love collecting toys and McDonald's in particular have made this a key element in encouraging children to eat their food.. mother of two. For of nine characters which children are encouraged to collect. purchased in July 2002. came with a free Smurf character . below: McDonald's bribe children by giving away nasty toys to go with the latest Disney film. The members of The Parents Jury were particularly critical of companies using Pester Power. Read what the parents had to say. and McDonald's was the clear winner of this award with more complaints than any other food manufacturer. It is difficult when so many children eat there not to visit as well.there is such a strong advertising campaign and the offer of Happy Meal toys. from Stevenage in Hertfordshire I have a particular problem with McDonald's .and the award goes to: McDonald's Happy Meals! The Children's Food Awards Pester Power is the name given to marketing techniques which encourage children to nag their parents to purchase a particular product. mother of two.. Once inside there aren't really any healthy options.. from Hailsham in East Sussex 19 Pester Power effect of Advertising .

The chips are very popular but I think that is the salt. from Stone Cross in East Sussex The Happy Meals adverts are all too persuasive. Explaining to a four-year-old why she can't have a toy that lots of other kids will have is very difficult.e.they just want the toy..particularly with McDonald's and children's cereals. from Olney 20 Pester Power effect of Advertising . mother of one. But there is the toy and the novelty of the packaging. Burger King. Wouldn't it be nice if they harnessed all their skills to create a healthy. from London McDonald's. mother of three. from Isleworth in Middlesex What is the attraction of McDonald's? My children get so excited about it. from Harpenden in Hertfordshire Children choosing food products because of the "free" gift . from Brecon in Powys Happy meals at McDonald's are a problem. from Teesside in Cleveland With free gifts and toys. KFC. etc. children want the food and pester to get it purely to have the free toy. all use children's movies to attract kid to their restaurants.e. mother of one. You have to eat more of the product to collect the set . Piglet or the Tweenies. We don't go very often and they don't like the actual food that much.and sold that as well as they do burgers?! mother of two. nutritious meal with a toy . Tigger. McDonald's do an 'amazing' selection of toys linked to films. father of one. mother of one My son gets sad that he can't eat at McDonald's when he sees the TV adverts which depict free toys with every kids meal. Pooh.g. McDonald's. mother of two. to attract children to pester and pester parents. other of one.I dislike the use of pester power marketed to create demand for unhealthy food i. mother of two. Burger King. they link up with toy companies to offer collectable ranges. Kids want the current toys .all part of a large collection that encourages kids to keep going back to get all the toys. from London My children have both admitted recently that they don't like the food .

21 Pester Power effect of Advertising . High Court.What's in 'em? McDonald's Happy Meals carrry no ingredients list or nutritional information. salt and sugar. In the famous McLibel trial. but without any healthy eating guidelines against which to judge the information. The McDonald's website does give nutritional information for McDonald's products. from Harrogate Expert opinion McDonald's certainly knows how to sell fast food. from Stockport 'McDonald's loves mums. he thinks McDonald's is a toy shop!). The company spent £58. The Happy Meal which we describe below has more fat (19g) than protein (15g). so can we go?' my four year old asks mother of two. 1997) McDonald's Happy Meals . We haven't given up yet! mother of two. the judge ruled that the company does 'exploit children by using them as more susceptible subjects of advertising. A Happy Meal consists of either a Hamburger. 4 Chicken McNuggets or 3 Fish Fingers.He always asks to go to McDonald's because he sees other children with the Happy Meal toys (in fact. to pressure their parents into going to McDonald's' (Justice Bell. Unfortunately the fast food which McDonald's sells is typically high in fats (including saturated fats).000* on advertising in the UK in 2001. or a New Chicken and Ketchup Burger. so it's hard to know exactly what you're eating.470. plus regular French Fries and a regular soft drink. and a large proportion of that budget was aimed directly at children. and more sugar (27g) than fat or protein. Whilst eating the occasional Happy Meal isn't going to damage you . Cheeseburger. And no fresh fruit or vegetables.frequent consumption of meals like these could compromise your future health.

knowledge and attitudes pertaining to their functioning as consumers in the marketplace. Maize). Sugar. Child Psychology Unraveled Children think and behave differently from adults. Modified Wheat Starch.and found that the meal contains 19g of fat. believes the ads as truthful. Flour (Wheat. shopping. Three to seven years of age is approximately the Perceptual stage wherein the child can distinguish ads from programs based on perceptual features. This is based on child development -how age related patterns emerge across children’s growing sophistication as consumers. social and developmental needs at different stages. Web-based groups providing free e-mail accounts and contests with tempting prizes is another strategy that is rampantly used. Chicken McNuggets Chicken. Colour: Sulphite Ammonia Caramel (E150d). Phosphoric Acid (E338). Caffeine.We used the website to analyse a typical Happy Meal . Modified Tapioca Starch. Stabiliser: Potassium Triphosphate (E451). 27g of sugar but only 15g of protein. French Fries Potatoes cooked in 100% Vegetable Oil. seven to eleven years of age is the Analytical Stage wherein the child distinguishes ads from programs based on persuasive intent. Dextrose sometimes added. spontaneous. including their knowledge of products. Unspecified Flavourings. Maize Starch. advertising. Spice. Sodium Carbonate (E500) and Tricalcium Phosphate (E341). Consumer socialization is the process by which these kids acquire skills. highly creative.4 Chicken McNuggets. Sugars. They put up posters and billboards in the schools. Coca-Cola Carbonated Water. Maize Polenta. They have different emotional. Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil. Ground Celery. persuading the cash-starved schools into opening their doors to them by paying for access to classrooms and space for their advertising material and promotions. regular French Fries and a regular soft drink . pricing and decision-making. brands. They are great observers. This almost approximates to a crime because it is nothing less than attacking the natural credulity of the most innocent. Water. very insightful. sensitive and volatile. Salt. funny and interesting and holds positive attitudes towards the ad. understands that the ad may have 22 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Salt added after cooking. Dextrose. As against this. Egg Albumen. Catch Them Young at Schools and Web Advertisers have very blatantly entered the schools. Raising Agents: Phosphate Salts (E450). most gullible and most inexperienced beings on earth. Breadcrumbs.

In a nutshell. As children develop the ability to recognize and understand ads and their purpose they start making demands. Family dynamics are thus influenced by advertisements that create demands and provide children with arguments why they should want a particular 'for them'. If these demands are not fulfilled they might start screaming or throwing themselves to the floor. 23 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Research by advertising agencies has confirmed that children's personal preferences can be targeted and changed by TV advertising. It is difficult to explain to young children the reasons why they cannot have everything which . If adults see a product advertised and don't find it when they go shopping they forget about it. Research has confirmed the influence of the media upon the close conformity between children's tastes and perceived needs and the content of the programs they watch. he is skeptical towards the claims made in the ad. Eleven to Sixteen years of age is the Reflective Stage and here the child understands the persuasive intent of ads along with the specific ad tactics and appeals. Kids have a short attention span and are extremely quick to criticize or reject advertising that does not fulfill their viewing criteria.according to advertising . He believes that the ads lie and knows how to spot the specific instances of bias and deception. this can make life extremely difficult for parents who for financial or moral reasons refuse to comply. Teachers say they know what has been on TV the night before by the games the children play the next day.contain a bias and deception and can also hold negative attitudes towards ads. The Development of Critical Sense Children's reactions to advertisement can be very different from grown-ups.

They form the most unloyal. • 74 percent of the children.Some Research Findings Findings of the Kids’ Lifestyle Study. would like to own one. The need for something new. ever experimenting and most fickle demographic segment. who have heard of mobile phones with cameras.Google (31 percent). LG (60 percent). They are actually promo loyalists and keep switching brands for better offers. Infosys (30 percent) amongst the kids who have heard of these companies. Impulse category brands are always being evaluated. saying that they. • Passe Syndrome-The research talks of a Passe Syndrome amongst kids that makes kids increasingly dismiss products that fail to cater to their immediate needs. Microsoft (39 percent).New Generations 2005-conducted by Cartoon Network • Mobile Phones with cameras rank the highest in the list of gadgets of desire for kids 714.Wipro (35 percent). Reliance (56 percent) . apple I-Pod at 43 percent and Sony Play station at 33 percent. Times Magazine and Consumer report 2005 list of top-10kid-bribes • Nintendogs • FLY Pentop Computer • I-Dog • Zizzle lz • Pixel Chix • Shift Tricycle • PlasmaCar • 20Q Orb • One laptop per child AC Nielson Research • A greater access to pocket money and a bigger say in purchase decisions has resulted in children being more informative and demanding. being always in the ‘what’s next’ mode. • This is followed by X-Box at 45 percent. something novel makes them 24 Pester Power effect of Advertising . • Nokia turned out to be the ‘coolest’ brand among this age group with 72 percent saying that its very ‘cool’ followed by Sony (71 percent). They seem to be moving to the next beat thing a lot quicker and a lot many times. an outcome of the wide choice that they have at their disposal.HCL (32 percent).

J. children ages four to twelve spent an estimated $35 billion (Tapping the Three Kids' Markets. • Four hours of television programming contain about 100 ads (Minneapolis Star Tribune. 2001). American Demographics. 1999). who watch a lot of television. • In 2001. 1998). Salamon. • Children as young as age three recognize brand logos (Fischer. trying hard to keep their brands in the top-ofmind. McNeal. directly and indirectly.000 television commercials every year (Strasburger.5 billion dollars in 1996 (Business Week. with brand loyalty influence starting at age two (McNeal. 1992). For instance. McNeal. April 1998). George. 2001). • The market sales of licensed products for infants increased 32% to a record 2. the popular Sports Illustrated for Kids. 1999) • Young children are not able to distinguish between commercials and TV programs.experimenting on the retail front and keeps marketers on their toes.recall at all days of the wek and all times of the day. TV shows and movies or promote brand consciousness and loyalty. James. 2002). 25 Pester Power effect of Advertising . teenagers. • Children. Comstock. They do not recognize that commercials are trying to sell something (Television and the American Child. • Kids are extremely conscious about product features and thereby brands and hence comes the kidfluence. US studies on the impact and influence of advertising on children show that • An estimated $12 billion a year is now spent on advertising and marketing to children (The Kids' Market: Myths and Realities. The Outcome of Indiscreet Marketing to Children • Magazines aimed at children have blossomed. 6/30/97). 1991. ages 12 to 17. March. carries ads for minivans. 1991). • The average American child may view as many as 40. want more toys seen in advertisements and eat more advertised food than children who do not watch as much television (Strasburger. influenced the household spending of $500 billion (McNeal. children 12 years and under. • In 1997. spent a record $155 billion (New York Times. • Promotional toys either tie in to cartoons. Academic Press Inc) • In 2000. James. Many of these magazines are kid versions of adult magazines.

Kids –the chief design element of commercials Kids are everywhere in advertising. • Children's toys are starting to carry product placements (e.. everywhere children go. Kids and ICTs Informal evidence suggests that the most popular in –thing for kids these days are the ICT product and services. seeking to catch the children's eyes and purchases. That is why advertising agencies such as McCaan.• Cartoon and toy characters are used on all kinds of products. • Promotional licensing of products aimed at kids which will include media pitches. • Channel One: short news briefs are surrounded by commercials that children are forced to watch in schools. Barbie™ dolls with Coca Cola™ accessories). • Advertising in schools: Advertisers and marketers take advantage of severe budget shortfalls in schools to offer cash or products in return for advertising access to children. • Databases of child customers are being built from information gathered on Internet sign-ups and chat rooms.Erickson and Saatchi and Saatchi have launched separate divisions to produce advertising aimed at children. e. • Logos on all types of merchandise.g. Close-up has now entered the fray with two cute tykes. and from direct surveys.g. • Give-away programs include promotional merchandise aimed at children (e. McDonald's™ "Happy Meals"). socially and emotionally. All stakeholders in this area should recognize the particular vulnerabilities of young children who are still developing physically. • Children's radio networks are becoming popular. from electronic toy registries at stores like Toys 'R' Us. In Britain too the numbers are startling. The risks to young children from the use of ICTs are enormous: 26 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Kids with celebrities like the Big B in the Hajmola ad make a still more lethal combination.g. Tata Steel uses children symbolically to show how their company works. a brand of pagers will include messages from MTV. There is Videocon with Sharukh Khan and a bunch of kids and Hutch with a pug and a boy to hook the adults to the commercials. They are being used as effective ways of grabbing adult attention..

has a great nagging effect and the parents are almost forced to visit Mc Donalds by the little customers that Mc Donalds sets its eyes on. the APA has deduced that children under eight are unable to critically comprehend televised advertising messages and are prone to accept advertiser messages as truthful. c. Will this make a child more or less safe? The recent introductions of Advergames and Tribal Marketing need to be mentioned in this context. Through constant engaging. This will improve the accuracy of location to about 3m. 27 Pester Power effect of Advertising .a. Today. and ad hoc networking technologies will bring a paradigm shift greater than that precipitated by the telephone. This helps marketers in collecting customer data. In a compilation of studies done on children's media habits spanning nearly four years. which talks about distributing free toys. lively communication. Tribal Marketing strategy helps in creating communities or social groups focused on a product or service. Physical risk of developing a ‘sms thumb’ caused by very young hands using a keypad designed for adult hands. Kids and Eating Habits The kids market remains crucially important as the marketers seek to attract a new audience and build brand loyalty at a very young age. Mc Donalds has long been using children as a bait to lure the family into its restaurants. “The Action Man and My Little Pony” figures are a lure to buy a high fat meal which probably contains fewer nutrients than the toys themselves. The main concern will be that the risks of harmful contacts. consider Location Based Services (LBS). They serve to reinforce brands in compelling ways because users have to register to be eligible for prizes. It has lived by its symbols-the Golden arches. the accuracy of the location is limited to the size of the mobile cell in which the mobile phone is operating. The ‘functional’ value and the ‘connecting’ value is the most sought after. Mc Donalds has been able to capture its little consumers. As an example. Gaining access to harmful content as a form of communication. Ronald McDonald and the red fry carton have all become iconic. New technologies likely to increase risks for young children Pervasive and ubiquitous computing products. the brand benefits from propagating a word of mouth. embedded and wearable communicating devices. can anyone else do this?” Next generation LBS will put satellite positioning technology into mobile phones. The strategy is based on the premise that the tech savvy child today has a fascination for technology that can add to his or her comfort along with providing the social advantage of being connected and linked. the internet and the mobile phone taken together. The Mc Donalds Happy Meals ad. outside of direct parental supervision will increase. b. fun. brand bonding efforts. The question parents are asking is “if I can establish the location of my child with this technology. The gamers may also invite their friends. The advertisements have created very powerful and vocal kid consumers with huge buying leverage. Advergames are web based computer games that incorporate advertising messages and images.

2003) specifically blame high profile fast food brands for manipulation of consumer perceptions. thereby reinforcing the biological pressures driving obesity (Anon. Another study released by the Kaiser Family Foundation on Wednesday.acquired by consumers and then used as a shortcut in subsequent decision making – explanation added) by advertising a family friendly environment and generating positive associations that may cause consumers to devalue their perceptions of the risks arising from unhealthy diets” (Anon. 28 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Only 7% of checkouts had their display of foods or drinks out of the reach of children. 2003). McDonald’s exploits the affect heuristic (i. emotional aspects of learning about the brand . but not causation between television viewing and obesity. Television may be more influential than families in setting children’s food preferences” Epstein et al (1995) clarify the link by identifying a co-relation.accurate and unbiased. Food Advertising and Obesity Zuppa. “For example. leading to unhealthy eating habits. says children’s exposure to billions of dollars worth of food advertising and marketing in the media may be a key mechanism through which media contributes to childhood obesity What is the Role of Advertising in Promoting Food Choices? It is claimed that advertising manipulates consumer preferences.e. All supermarkets display food products at their checkouts.The same anonymous authors who make the above assertion (Anon. 2003: 1168). Malaysia is considering a ban on fat food advertising as it is been considered that the food that the ads promote act as ‘silent killers’. with most checkouts displaying chocolate (87%). Links between fat rich fast food and health issues like obesity were heightened by a 2001 U. gum (81%) and sweets (80%).via trial and error . Morton and Mehta suggest that the amount of advertising to which children are exposed “has the potential to influence children’s health attitudes and behaviors.S Bestseller –Fast food Nation and a 2004 documentary movie about eating only fast food for a month-Super Size Me.

• Greater exposure to kids There is an ever-increasing exposure to kids both in terms of technology and mass media. • Delayed parenthood This results in parents with more disposable incomes at the time their children are born. Grand parents’ are the fastest growing income sources for the children.” says gynecologist Dr Duru Shah. There are opportunities galore. This endearment encouraged the wanton kids to ask for material pleasures which they know would never be denied by their parent turned pal. ‘Parenting’ is out and being pals/friends to the children is the in thing. • The ‘Askable’ Parent The great authoritarian divide between parents and children is inexistent. a child psychologist. forcing the little adults to excel both at school and extra academics. • Growth of retail sector There appears to be a high positive correlation between the growth of the retail sector and the development of the kids market.Drivers of Pester Power Indian society has undergone a sweeping change in terms of the structure and environment of its vital institution-The Family. • More working women and consequently more dual income families. • Rise in the number of single parent households Research supports that children in single parent households make their first purchases almost a year earlier than their two-parent household counterparts. • The pang and guilt of not being able to spend much quality time with children is compensated by smothering them with material goods. Communication between parents and children has opened up considerably and the stereotypical roles have become rarer. Every 29 Pester Power effect of Advertising . A 2000 study of 50 older couples by SNDT University showed that most of them had kids after they turned 35. David Elkind. • Grand parents’ increasing role in bringing up children because of working mothers. • Hurried Child Syndrome and Hyper parenting Parents today overscheduled their children’s’ life with a heavy dose of academics and extracurricular activities. first proposed this in 1981 in his book The Hurried Child: Growing up too fast. “The average age of career women starting a family may well have touched the mid-30s.

Images of children often appear in advertisements. • Showing children in a sexual way. The ad shows a child negotiating a dangerous route to reach the Indian cricket team that is waiting for their drinks. the multinational was depicting India as a whole as endorsing child labor. clothing education and love. especially if they don’t buy products and services shown in the ads. have the responsibility to depict children in the advertisements in a more responsible and responsive manner. The common issues surrounding children and advertising are: • Making children desire things which their parents cannot afford or which they (children) will not be able to use. • Advertising soft drinks and high fat/sugar contents to kids. • Pester power: Encouraging children to pester their parents for advertised product or service. Children and Advertising-Issues and concerns The effect of advertising on children and their portrayal in advertisements are sensitive issues. children rely on adults for safety.e. • Making children feel inferior. wearing make-up and glamorous clothes. Cartoon Network and Disney lead the pack. it glorifies child labor. A perfect example is the growth of indoor amusement centres in malls targeted to children. as adults. Child rights activists are up in arms against MTV and Pepsi for depicting children in a negative light and endorsing child labor in their advertisements. 30 Pester Power effect of Advertising . they say. • Showing children in unsafe or dangerous situations which the kids may emulate. • Kids channels-a newer phenomenon The dedicated channels to kids programming target kids in two ways-‘eyeballs’ on channels that is. i. viewing and brand promotions. The marketers. both those designed to sell children’s products and those designed to persuade adults to buy anything from car insurance to carpets Children are the vulnerable members of the society. The protestors believe that by featuring the entire Indian cricket team. food. shelter. The NGOs are especially peeved with the Pepsi commercial as. normal lives.departmental has a space assigned exclusively for kids merchandise ranging from Kriish apparels to Power Ranger order for them to lead healthy.

so it follows that kids are vocal about what they want their parents to buy. they influence their parents' buying decisions and they're the adult consumers of the future. emotional and social needs at different ages. The marriage of psychology and marketing To effectively market to children. Parents today are willing to buy more for their kids because trends such as smaller family size. increasing from a mere $100 million in 1990 to more than $2 billion in 2000. pestering or nagging can be divided into two categories—"persistence" and "importance. Martino. rather than going straight to the mom. Advertising Executive According to the 2001 marketing industry book Kidfluence. Kids represent an important demographic to marketers because they have their own purchasing power. Using research that analyzes children's behaviour.How Marketers Target Kids STRATEGIES MARKETERS EMPLOY TO TARGET CHILDREN. because advertisers know what a powerful force it can be." Barbara A. Marketing to children is all about creating pester power. As well. With the help of well-paid researchers and psychologists. advertisers now have access to indepth knowledge about children's developmental. advertisers need to know what makes kids tick. that is repeated over and over again) is not as effective as the more sophisticated "importance nagging." This latter method appeals to parents' desire to provide the best for their children. art 31 Pester Power effect of Advertising ." Persistence nagging (a plea. "Pester power" refers to children's ability to nag their parents into purchasing items they may not otherwise buy. "We're relying on the kid to pester the mom to buy the product. guilt can play a role in spending decisions as time-stressed parents substitute material goods for time spent with their kids. Industry spending on advertising to children has exploded in the past decade. fantasy lives. and plays on any guilt they may have about not having enough time for their kids. dual incomes and postponing children until later in life mean that families have more disposable income. Here are some of the strategies marketers employ to target children and teens: Pester Power Today's kids have more autonomy and decision-making power within the family than in previous generations.

the mid-1980s saw the birth of a new kind of corporation— Nike. James McNeal. adultbegin in childhood. or 32 Pester Power effect of Advertising . The APA is currently studying the issue. Buzz or street marketing The challenge for marketers is to cut through the intense advertising clutter in young people's lives. toy and clothing companies have been the marketing must cultivating brand recognition in children for years. By moving their manufacturing operations to countries with cheap labour. to name a few—which changed their primary corporate focus from producing products to creating an image for their brand name.. Many companies are using "buzz marketing"—a new twist on the triedand-true "word of mouth" method. While fast food. Marketers plant the seeds of brand recognition in very young children. Calvin Klein. The Kids Market. The idea is to find the coolest kids in a community and have them use or wear your product in order to create a buzz around it. and has led to the creation of some of the most wealthy and powerful multi-national corporations the world has seen. head off to school most can recognize hundreds of brand Even if a child does not logos. babies as young as six months of age can form mental images of corporate logos and mascots. in the hopes that the seeds will grow into lifetime relationships. companies are able to craft sophisticated marketing strategies to reach young people. and by the time children begin with children. even their dreams. hotels and airlines. According to the Center for a New American Dream. Tommy Hilfiger.. when a group of U. Brand loyalties can be "Brand marketing must established as early as age two. Building brand name loyalty Canadian author Naomi Klein tracks the birth of "brand" marketing in her 2000 book No Logo. mental health professionals issued a public letter to the American Psychological Association (APA) urging them to declare the practice unethical." oriented businesses such as banks and automakers are now getting in on the act. The issue of using child psychologists to help marketers target kids gained widespread public attention in 1999. buy the product and will not for many years. It has been a tremendously profitable formula. According to Klein. Sports Illustrated and People have all launched kid and teen editions—which boast ads for adult related products such as minivans. they freed up money to create their powerful marketing messages. 1999 Magazines such as Time.

a Kraft "healthy eating" kit to teach about Canada's Food Guide (using Kraft products). Supplying schools with technology in exchange for high company visibility. chat rooms and blogs to spread the word about music. or Campbell's Labels for Education project. etc. the Pizza Hut reading incentives program in which children receive certificates for free pizza if they achieve a monthly reading goal. in which Campbell provides educational resources for schools in exchange for soup labels collected by students. school buses. • • • • • The Internet The Internet is an extremely desirable medium for marketers wanting to target children: 33 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Contests and incentive programs: for example." as it's also called. Sponsoring school events: The Canadian company ShowBiz brings moveable video dance parties into schools to showcase various sponsors' products. can help a company to successfully connect with the savvy and elusive teen market by using trendsetters to give their products "cool" status. clothes and other products among unsuspecting users. Exclusive deals with fast food or soft drink companies to offer their products in a school or district. computers and educational materials. Commercialization in education School used to be a place where children were protected from the advertising and consumer messages that permeated their world—but not any more. in exchange for funds. Budget shortfalls are forcing school boards to allow corporations access to students in exchange for badly needed cash. Advertising posted in classrooms. including: • Sponsored educational materials: for example. or forestry company Canfor's primary lesson plans that make its business focus seem like environmental management rather than logging. Corporations realize the power of the school environment for promoting their name and products."street marketing. where young "Net promoters" use newsgroups. Marketers are eagerly exploiting this medium in a number of ways. Buzz marketing is particularly well-suited to the Internet. on computers. A school setting delivers a captive youth audience and implies the endorsement of teachers and the educational system.

music and video games industries routinely market violent entertainment to young children." and discovered that 80 per cent were targeted to children under 17. Kids are often online alone. Unlike broadcasting media. This generation of young people is growing up with the Internet as a daily and routine part of their lives. which have codes regarding advertising to kids. in print. The FTC studied 44 films rated "Restricted. Parents generally do not understand the extent to which kids are being marketed to online. and online. interactive environments based on products and brand names. and make sure that everyone between the ages of 12 and 18 was exposed to the film. "Our goal was to find the elusive teen target audience. and toys based on Restricted movies and Mrated video games are marketed to children as young as four. Of the video game companies investigated for the report. without parental supervision. One studio's plan for a violent R-rated film stated. The FTC report also highlighted the fact that toys based on characters from mature entertainment are often marketed to young children. Sophisticated technologies make it easy to collect information from young people for marketing research. 70 per cent regularly marketed Mature rated games (for 17 years and older) to children. Mature and Teen rated video games are advertised in youth magazines. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) revealed how the movie. Marketing plans included placing advertising in media that would reach a substantial percentage of children under 17. and to target individual children with personalized advertising.• It's part of youth culture. and radio. the U. By creating engaging. Marketing plans included TV commercials run during hours when young viewers were most likely to be watching.S. companies can build brand loyalties from an early age. the Internet is unregulated. • • • • • Marketing adult entertainment to kids Children are often aware of and want to see entertainment meant for older audiences because it is actively marketed to them. In a report released in 2000. 34 Pester Power effect of Advertising ." Music containing "explicit-content" labels were targeted at young people through extensive advertising in the most popular teen venues on television.

It highlights how parents are "greatly underestimating" the effect that the credit crunch is having on their children. In addition. Parents are also pushing back more.The age of ‘pester power' could be over The recession could signal the end of ‘pester power' as new research reveals the extent to which the recession is having an impact on children's lives and their attitudes to money. 44% of kids admitted they are not asking their parents for things that ‘they don't really need' compared to before the recession. not just in their attitude to finances. only 16% of parents thought their children were worried about financial issues. The study follows interviews with more than 1. potentially signalling the demise of ‘pester power'. 44% of children said their lives had become worse since the beginning of the credit crunch. In addition. 35 Pester Power effect of Advertising .000 parents and 600 children. with more than two thirds of 12-16 year olds (68%) saying they are worried about getting a job when they are older. but also how worried they are about their parents' wellbeing.more than half (55%) of kids said they were worried about the impact the recession was having on their mum and dad. While only 18% of parents thought their children were concerned about the credit crunch. with 56% saying no more often to their kids. in reality the figure is much higher . compared to nearly half of all children (49%) who said they now worry about money. The research also uncovered that the credit crunch generation has developed a more frugal outlook on life.

they seem to know how to 'lovingly' whip their parents into relenting. designer watches. Expensive gifts It is not uncommon for parents today to gift their children personal plasma televisions. She wants to watch her serials while he wants cartoons. especially in cities today. His mother Asha. So we bought him a television for his birthday. Gone are the days when children were content with dolls." Sunaina. an article in one of the national dailies talked about the harrowing experience one mother had whilst celebrating her little girl's birthday. And they are even getting it." They know they can Kiddie pester power is on the rise. want the moon for their birthday. bought a battery-operated miniature bike for her five-year old son. that latest video games (that cost more than the average person's monthly income). who works in a five-star hotel in Mumbai says. Today. some kids might consider these gifts pass. I work long hours and need to travel frequently. 27. et al. a 28-year old single mom. The bike is very expensive but the look of joy on his face made it worthwhile. Suneil turned seven last month and his birthday gift is a colour television in his room. I don't want him to feel deprived. it was very stressful for the parent to measure up to the kid's demands and also prove that she could outdo what the best friend's mom did for her birthday! All this hullabaloo for the birthday of a 5-year old! In India this trend is slowly but surely creeping in. "I really feel bad about leaving him with the maid all day long. We hate to come back home and see the child and grandparent at war. "There were big fights between Suneil and my mother in-law over the television. After my husband's death. Recently. board games and books. My husband and I are out to work and come back late. who works in a foreign bank in Kolkata. having a personal television would make 36 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Suneil cajoled his parents by lamenting how lonely he felt while his parents were at work.Parenting: How to handle pester power Are you yet another parent who is being held to ransom by your tiny tots? Many children. If kids want something. According to the story.

"Parents also want whatever little time they spend with their kids to be pleasant and tantrum-free.' Child psychiatrists feel that today's children are confronting a new world with new rules. But teaching your child how to make choices is one thing and allowing them to have their way at any cost is quite another. a child psychologist with 20 years of experience who manages her own practice in Mumbai. ''Parents try to give their kids opportunities they didn't get when they were young." Psychiatrist Dr Shetty opines. Parents often try to live vicariously through their kids and make up for many of their own shortcomings. So. where they are taught to be more assertive. Sunaina's son just had to say. ~ Be firm 37 Pester Power effect of Advertising . The crux of the issue is that you have to be firm. Families now have fewer children and working parents feel guilty about not being at home more often. says. ~ Teach your child how to take 'no' for an answer The most valuable and important lesson you teach your child is to accept rejection. Most parents can see through but give in nevertheless. Life abounds in disappointments and rejections. Anjali Chhabria. Says Sunaina. so let the kid have fun. Children emulate parents. "I know my son armtwists me into agreeing to his demands but I give in. you can't blame the kid for making unreasonable demands. My friend and her husband upgraded their car from the humble Wagon R to Chevrolet Aveo because their six-year old went on endlessly about how miserable he felt driving around in the Wagon R! Working parents' guilt Psychologists point to the spurt in dual-income households. so they give in to the child's demand. cajoling to manipulation -. He doesn't have his father and why do I earn if not to give him what he wants?" The kiddie brigade is also influencing adult decisions of purchase. he would have got it for me. "If dad was here." Techniques range from emotional blackmail to temper tantrums. if you are extravagant in your expenses.but the fact remains that an increasing number of parents are succumbing to relentless pestering. Unless they learn to cope with it.him happier as he could watch his favourite cartoons sans grandmum's constant nagging. more independent and to make choices. their years ahead would be full of misery. How to tackle the problem The how-to list is never ending." The usual line of thought is 'We can afford it.

Let them know that you dislike such comments and they wouldn't get anywhere with such tactics. If they see your fritter away your money. be firm. etc. you can't blame the kid for competing with his/her friend. ~ Beware of the guilt trap There's no reason to feel guilty if you are working. If you compete with your friends in buying the bigger car. But all this will fall on deaf ears if you don't practice what you preach. you have no reason to feel guilty. a better house. There will always be someone with a better car. Whether you work to keep the family afloat or to achieve your personal ambitions. nip it in the bud. Explain that competition is good at sports and studies but not in such trivial things. sit down and talk to them. they won't feel wrong in demanding extravagant gifts from you. etc. 38 Pester Power effect of Advertising . you have to show the way. bigger diamonds. Tell them that there's no end to compete on such trivial issues. Once again. If children or others in the family begin the emotional blackmail on you.When kids make expensive demands. Teach them the value of money. ~ Discourage comparisons When they say that they should have a grander birthday than their best friend.

This can be the hardest thing to do. those trainers don’t come cheap but may be really important to your teenager and how they fit in with their friends. • When you say no. • Teaching your children the value of money is an extremely good lesson to learn. Especially if you want to give them things you never had. It helps to be calmly honest and explain what you think is value for money and what is affordable. 39 Pester Power effect of Advertising . But be firm so you don’t get caught in the trap of haggling if your child has an answer for everything. Or could you combine birthday and Christmas presents together if they were set on something? Again if your child is really serious about something can the family club together rather than buy individual presents? If you do this you may need to remind your child that they will not be getting as many presents if everyone clubs together. mean it. Is there a possibility of sharing the cost with your older children? If they have a Saturday job or paper round you could offer to pay for half if they put in the rest. If your kids know that you will eventually cave in they will keep trying.Tips on tackling pester power • Don’t feel guilty for not having a bottomless purse. • Is there a compromise? For example. 'Just because I say so' is sometimes not enough for your child to understand the decision. It could be that you can’t afford it or that you only just bought them something last week. But just remember you are saying no for a reason. • When you say no it may help to talk to your child about why.

take one of their favourites in your bag to distract fitting in with friends. Sometimes as parents we forget how important something as simple as a pair of trainers or the latest football shirt can be. so if you have said no for a reason you know your ex-partner will back you up. Agree on decisions and stick to them so you don’t undermine each other. Help them to see that they can’t have everything they want and if it is a Christmas list tell them that not even Father Christmas has that much money and ask them to list presents in order of preference with a limit of five. like your time. But to some children it can mean so much more . • Setting ground rules with your ex-partner is important in the same way all decisions are. If you know your child will start asking for a new toy. there may be times where you can share babysitting so that you can go shopping without the children and avoid the stress of shopping with them. or trying to impress. • Agree tactics with your partner.• Even if you say no try to show your child you understand how they feel. Remember all the things that you do give your child. • Try to get out of the habit of buying something every time you go out and make treats be what they are treats. love or simple but thoughtful presents will be remembered long after the latest toy has been thrown away. don’t let yourself get het up if they buy the kids presents you can’t afford. Or if you know your child will want a drink or a snack pop some in your bag. But if this sounds an impossible task. 40 Pester Power effect of Advertising . • Remember that children change their minds every week with new crazes. try not to be flippant with their wants and feelings. They will soon learn that mummy or daddy’s purse doesn’t come out for them every time you go out. • Is there anyone who can look after the kids when you go shopping?Although there is not always a babysitter to hand when you want to go shopping. Even if the answer is no.

41 Pester Power effect of Advertising . tell them you will think about it so you can give them a final answer rather than break a promise which can be hard for your child to understand.• Don’t say yes unless you mean it. If your child asks you if they can have something and you feel put on the spot.

COM WWW. Oxford University Press.Ltd. New Delhi. New Delhi.12 edition.WIKIPEDIA. (Sultan Chand and Sons).COM News Papers • • ECONOMIC TIMES TIMES OF INDIA 42 Pester Power effect of Advertising . Marketing Managaement.YAHOO. Prentice Hal Publishing House. Philip and Keller. New Delhi. Indian branch.COM WWW. Onkvisit Sak & Shaw John J “International Marketing-Analysis and Strategy”.COM WWW. Bhattacharya Varshney “International Marketing Management”. Pearson Education(Singapore)Pvt.GOOGLE. New Delhi.BIBLIOGRAPHY • • • • Kotler. Kevin Lan..YOUTUBE. Website • • • • • WWW.COM WWW. International Marketing: Rajesh Mohan Joshi.TALKINGRETAIL.

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