I love talking about personal finance and in my day to day life I really pride myself on being a saver. I pride myself that I can’t be pressured by sales people, or guilted by friends into purchases. It just doesn’t happen.
However, I’ve been thinking lately. The things that I do have to purchase… Cleaning products, consumables, children’s products, etc. How much of the purchases that I do make, have been swayed by clever marketing? How much have I been conditioned to believe certain brands are superior?
Last night while researching, I quickly found an interesting article in Psychology Today, linked here if you’re interested, which illustrates that it doesn’t matter how strong willed you believe you are, some of the marketers’ message is still being received. Even if it is just brand recognition, it’s still a win for marketers.
My immediate next question: “So what can I do about it?”
I have the joy of raising two beautiful little boys and I desperately want to instill good habits in them, so the following steps are what I am trying to do for my family.
(Fun fact: brand loyalty can start as early as two years old. This topic is more important than it may seem.)
Reducing Ad Exposure Digitally
- Unsubscribe from email lists as they roll into your account. Hit unsubscribe, and delete the original email immediately.
- Get a quality ad blocker on your computer. Some are free, some are not. This is really whatever you prefer.
- If you watch Youtube, unsubscribe from sponsored Youtubers such as lifestyle YouTubers immediately.
- Limit time on, (if not abolish completely), time spent on social media. Social media is awful on so many levels, but I’ll discuss this further in the future.
- Don’t mindlessly shop online. If you absolutely need something, great! Go nuts. But don’t window shop out of boredom.
Reducing Ad Exposure in Real Life
- Cancel cable. For every 1 hour of television, 13 minutes and 25 seconds are ads. Plus, is it just me, or is product placement everywhere nowadays?
- Opt for reading books instead of magazines.
- Shop for whole foods on the outskirts of the grocery store, (fruits, vegetables, bulk foods, fish), and avoid the processed foods in the aisles.
- Or, if you can, grocery shop online to avoid this dilemma altogether!
- Make more things from scratch at home. (Like, soap for example). Bonus points for using a glass container, with no labelling on it.
- Listen to audiobooks, podcasts or music while in the car instead of the radio.
- Go to war on physical junk mail and do your best to stop it from reaching your doorstep. The book, “Zero Waste Home”, outlines steps you can take in order to stop your home from receiving junk mail. Check it out at your local library!
- Don’t take free products just because they are free.
- Avoid wearing clothing that has a huge brand logo on it. You are not a walking billboard.
If anyone has any other tips on how to reduce exposure to advertisements in day to day life, I would love to hear them.