The paper tells that marketing to children has been of immense interest to marketers in recent times. Marketers use advertising to inform, communicate, persuade, entertain, and sell to the viewer. Children have become attractive markets not only because they can influence their parents’ purchase decision but also because they have their own income through jobs or allowances from parents. Their immense purchasing power has tempted the marketers to exploit the situation. Besides, certain characteristics such as repetition, branded characters, celebrity endorsements, and interesting production features enhance the importance of television as a medium. Advertisers use stealth marketing techniques and have started embedding or placing the product in movies or TV shows. They also use advergames where the tweens feel the flow of information. The fast food restaurants entice the vulnerable minds with the promise of a toy on their visit. Advertisers have also exploited the school arena to reach out to the children. Advertisements can be found on report cards, on school book covers, on school buses and the intention is to demonstrate their commitment to academic excellence. While there are debates and studies on how food advertising has led to increased incidences of obesity in tweens, there is no conclusive study to confirm this. However, advertising for children has certainly enhanced consumerism and the children feel they can decide what they want and when they want. Suddenly the children feel grown up and want to look and feel older.
This may not be a positive impact as the childish innocence is lost a very early age. The study concludes the materialism and consumerism should not be promoted through advertisements directed at tweens. The appropriate marketing technique should contain relevant and important information about the product, its benefits and the potential adverse impact. Recommendations for further studies were made and limitations highlighted. Table of Contents Chapter I Introduction 1.1 Background 1 1.2 Rationale for the study 2 1.3 Research aims and objectives 3 1.4 Structure of the study 4 1.5 Significance of the study 5 Chapter II Literature review 2.1 Chapter overview 6 2.2 Definition of tweens 6 2.3 The child consumer 7 2.4 Media used for marketing to children 10 2.5 Marketing techniques used by advertisers 13 2.6 Impact of advertisements on children 15 Chapter III Methodology 3.1 Chapter Overview 17 3.2 Research Philosophy 17 3.3 Purpose of the research and phenomenon 17 3.4 Epistemology 17 3.5 Research Strategy 19 3.6 Data collection 19 3.7 Justification for secondary data 20 3.8 Data analysis 20 3.9 Limitations 20 Chapter IV Findings 4.1 Chapter Overview 21 4.2 Cause of changes in tweens’ consumer behavior 21 4.3 Marketing techniques used by advertisers 22 4.4 Impact of advertising and marketing 26 4.5 Television as the most important medium 29 4.6 Discussions 29 Chapter V Conclusion & Recommendations 5.1 Conclusion 31 5.2 Recommendations 33 References 34 Tables & Figures Table 2.1 Media Channels that reach the tweens 11 Table 2.2 Media use by Tweens 12 Figure 4.1 Tweens shopping without parents 22 Figure 4.2 Pleasure & Fun 23 Figure 4.3 Excitement and surprise 26 Figure 4.4 Lollipop as a “popping candy” 26 Chapter I Introduction 1.1 Background Marketing to children has been of immense interest to marketers in recent times. Marketing campaigns have three-fold purpose –