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Super Bowl ads blitz kids online (+video)

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(Read caption) The men of 'Full House' are reuniting for the first time in nearly two decades: for a Dannon Oikos Super Bowl commercial.
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As the Super Bowl approaches, parents may have concerns over how much advertising will affect young viewers. However, a new study by Common Sense Media published today reveals that marketing to kids is already immeasurably invasive in their everyday activities.

I say “immeasurable” because, according to the Common Sense Media, researchers need to develop new methods to quantify young people's exposure to advertising.

“At this point we lack even the most rudimentary research needed for policymakers to ascertain whether certain types of practices of marketing to children are fair, such as enlisting them as 'viral' marketers, enticing them to purchase products through rewards and incentives, exposing them to product placement in popular TV shows, or encouraging them to make their own ads and enter them in a contest,” according to the report.

This study points to Nielsen data estimating kids ages 2-11 see approximately 24,000 ads per year, which seems enormous until you realize that is a drop in their mental buckets, since there is also product placement (Coke paying to have all the "American Idol" judges drinking Cokes) and embedded ads (naming products in TV or film dialogue), and online ads woven into gaming experiences.

Sounds to me as if we need further study in this area so we can craft a better system of measurement in order to create some effective boundaries for advertisers.

The study points out that kids are often engaged in "immersion games," commonly referred to as "Advergames," where the brand is woven seamlessly into the plot of the game.

The study also highlights cross-marketing between companies, such as Disney and fast food chains that offer branded toys in kids’ meals, while products from the fast food chains randomly appear in the hands of characters in kid and teen TV shows.


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