I’m a bit of a minimalist. I think I’ve mentioned this before. I’m a terrible consumer as well. A friend once said, you don’t even know you need things. Marketing doesn’t seem to work on me either, though the jury is still out on whether I am immune or oblivious. Don’t answer that.
Yet I find myself paying attention to the behaviors of consumerism and marketing. I think it’s because it’s foreign to me, like travelling to a new country. The psychology fascinates me, perhaps because it is so foreign. Or maybe it is more like watching a train wreck or bad behavior. Or maybe it’s voyeurism. Hmm. That would be weird.
Marketing has always struck me as the art of trying to convince me to buy something I don’t think I need. Or as a friend of mine would say: It’s just a way for them to get you to give them your money. Though Steve Jobs made a good point when he said it was about getting people to buy things they didn’t even know they needed, which I somehow find less annoying though I’m not sure why since I strongly convinced I don’t need much of anything.
I think about the blockbuster movies that come out every summer. First, I think it’s funny that they determine them to be blockbusters before they even come out. Like Disney movies that deemed classic, but that’s a whole different matter.
Blockbusters are an example of genius marketing and blind consumerism. The blockbuster movies are the same movies over and over again. Sure they change a few characters here and there but really. I saw a snippet of one of the Iron Man movies the other day. I could have sworn I was watching one of the Indiana Jones movies form 30 years before.
It’s not a question of whether the movies are good or bad. It’s that marketers are brilliant. Somehow they have convinced us that we should keep buying the same thing over and over again. And we do.
Some of us grow weary and cease to care. Sure, some of us fight back. We fight back against having our own psychologies used against us. Sometimes we find out how they are doing it because we know we are being manipulated.
And sometimes we say no.
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