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The author began his writing career while working for The Atlantic Monthly. He has also worked as a consulting writer for Fast Company. His writing has been featured in various magazines such as The Boston Globe, SPIN, and ESPN Magazine among others.
This is the first book he has written which was published by Public Affairs publications during 2008. He is a resident of Santa Fe, and lives with his spouse. This is a remarkable book which provides an account of how advertisers are trying to infiltrate the thoughts of the American citizens.
In this book, the author provides illustrations from companies emphasizing on the various new advertising techniques and strategies of persuasion employed to influence the perceptions of consumers.
According to the author, consumers are continuously bombarded with advertising messages, which have penetrated their lives. They have found their way into the consumers’ lives through education, medical prescriptions, cemeteries, and sex among other issues.
The book has nine chapters. The first part evaluates the quick development of destination advertising, the decreasing nature of the US development research, and the “experience economy” (Conley 68).
The author explains that this is an attempt to target consumers by advertising their experiences, recollections, and intimate relationships. This means that emotional exploitation is employed to influence the consumer’s essential cognitive abilities.
Correspondingly, the author states that “consumers are willing to pay up to 200% more when their decisions are based on emotion rather than reason” (Conley 3).
The author argues that the decrease of research and development relates to the significance placed on the image rather than the quality of the commodity being sold. For instance, an average of 150 daily products can satisfy about 85% of the population.
In contrast, 35,000 new products are introduced into the market on an annual basis. Conley argues that 9/10 products will not be successful.
Conley holds that, “with such fierce competition for so little space, brands are forced to develop strategies on how best to bond with consumers” (Conley 67). Consequently, rather than develop better commodities, organizations opt to re-brand because it is much simpler and cheaper.
The three subsequent chapters present a debate on the various strategies employed by advertisers to circumvent their consumers’ cognitive filters.
The author reveals horrific illustrations of branding related to product placement and invisible advertising. Commodity placements in the media have tremendously risen in the last few years, persistently pounding the consumers’ thoughts using branded television content (Conley 44).
The final sections of the book assess the new advertising research strategies as well as private advertisements.
Even though the author recognizes that advertising is rightfully placed in society, he argues “saturated in branding, Americans will increasingly see themselves as brands – as goods defined more by their packaging than their contents” (Conley 201).
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The book also highlights the fact that modern marketing researchers are evaluating advanced strategies in relation to psychological and artificial intelligence. This is in an attempt to obtain the capacity to influence reality from within the consumers’ minds.
This is a remarkable book which provides an account of how advertisers are trying to infiltrate the thoughts of the American citizens. Conley argues that Americans are affected by marketing-related complications such as obesity and gambling among others.
Conley emphasizes that any slight increase in the effect of advertising, could adversely influence public health.
The author makes an appeal to all consumers to refrain from obsessive advertisements. The author argues that it is the customers’ responsibility to decide what constitutes too much advertising.
Conley, Lucas. Obsessive Branding Disorder: The Business of Illusion and the Illusion of Business. New York: PublicAffairs, 2008. Print.