In contemporary society, businesses and marketers primarily concentrate on convincing their customers to adopt a particular way of life. Individuals are being manipulated into purchasing and embracing the false perception that companies are attempting to sell.
In “Do You Want Lies with That?” by Morgan Spurlock and “Escalating Dining: Is Mall Food Becoming Class?” by Sara Dickerman, both authors explore the extensive measures that marketers take to influence consumer behavior. These sellers invest significant amounts of money in order to attract customers.
Marketing strategies are constantly used to enhance the appeal of investments, whether it be promoting a product or renovating a restaurant. The approach taken by manufacturers nowadays involves deceptive practices and massive financial investments in advertising, as explained by Spurlock in her article. She sheds light on how companies market their products and how we, as consumers, are easily influenced and compelled to purchase them. Spurlock highlights the extensive efforts made by these companies, stating that they allocated billions of dollars to portray smoking as something cool, trendy, attractive, and harmless (Spurlock 38).
Despite the abundance of advertised items, it is worth considering how much of these items we truly require. The question arises whether our perceived “need” for these items is genuine or if it is simply the allure of possession that captivates people’s interest. Spurlock highlights the influence of the auto industry, revealing that in 2003, they spent a staggering $18.2 billion in convincing consumers that they need new, additional, and larger cars. As a result, the number of cars, vans, and SUVs for personal use has grown six times faster than the population itself (Spurlock 40).
The main idea conveyed in the passage is that corporations try to influence consumers by telling them what they need to be happy. However, the author argues that consumers also bear some responsibility in this situation. Spurock emphasizes that personal and corporate responsibility become intertwined, as individuals are accountable for their own well-being while their desires are shaped by advertising and marketing tactics employed by corporations (Spurlock 41).
While companies have a significant impact on consumer behavior, they do not directly force people to buy things. Businesses need to understand that one change might not always make a big difference. Dickerman investigates the preference for restaurants in shopping malls. Does a restaurant lose its charm or independence when it’s located in a mall? As Dickerman points out, “I suspected that people would find it strange to celebrate special occasions or propose marriage in a mall” (Dickerman 43).
The placement of upscale restaurants within high-end malls has become a popular trend. This phenomenon prompts us to consider the correlation between our food preferences, shopping behaviors, and overall lifestyle choices. The founders of these dining establishments sought to distinguish themselves from the rest of the mall by having a separate entrance. As Spurlock emphasizes in Dickerman’s article (45), this unique street-level entrance serves as both advertising and a means to differentiate the restaurant from its surrounding mall environment.
People are being deceived into believing they are dining at a upscale establishment, when in reality they’re no different from those eating Taco Bell in the food court. Nowadays, a significant number of individuals are being manipulated by corporations to purchase their products or dine at their establishments.
Both Morgan Spurlock and Sara Dickerman discuss the tactics used by marketers to attract consumers in their respective articles. Spurlock emphasizes the huge amount of money spent by manufacturers in convincing consumers that their products are superior, whereas Dickerman explores the concept of mall food becoming a symbol of class.
According to Dickerman, incorporating upscale restaurants into shopping malls does not actually create a distinct factor. Both parties discuss how these businesses attempt to market this particular lifestyle to customers and how customers contribute to this phenomenon. It is evident that marketers hold some sway over these consumers.