Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Brand Awareness

When my daughter was a wee toddler, she had little to no exposure to commercials on television.  She watched "The Letter Factory" DVD (literally, hundreds of millions of times - I must admit that as a result, she knew her letters and corresponding sounds by 18 months, but I lost a little piece of my sanity) or she watched a channel called Noggin, which was commercial free.  Eventually, though, she outgrew Dora, Diego, Max, and Ruby. This summer, when we weren't at the park or at a festibul, she watched Phineas and Ferb and of course the ubiquitous Spongebob Squarepants.  The various Nickelodeon channels do have commercials aplenty.  And she absorbs their content remarkably well.  When I am making dinner, I frequently hear this sort of thing from the other room:

"Mama! You have to buy the Perfect Brownie Pan!  Right away!"

"Can we get a Big Top Cupcake?"

"Mama, I think you need a Mister Steamy for the dryer."

If she tells me I need a Shake Weight, I'm kicking her out.  And who can forget the video of my little pixie advertising Danimals Crush Cups (a product she is desperate for me to buy even though she does not like yogurt in any form)?  My point is: the advertising folks can rejoice, because your plot is clearly working.  Fortunately, we haven't gotten to the point where she is rejecting products that are not name brand or items that may be used (pre-owned, if you prefer).  She wears a lot of Gymboree dresses, true, but I buy many of them on eBay.  She doesn't seem to notice the difference. Yet.

However, the other day we were in the car after I picked up her from school and we talked about her day.  Normally, she does not wear sneakers, but I knew she had gym class that day and had persuaded her to wear a pair to school (along with a skort).  She looked down at her Kohl's brand shoes.  "Mama," she started, "You know these are NOT Skechers, right?"   As a matter of fact, I was aware of that fact and advised her accordingly.  She likes the Skechers "Twinkle Toes" shoes that came out recently, and those buggers are $40! Not happening, particularly in the case of a little girl who only wears dresses and normally shuns sneakers.

On Sunday, we attended a concert at church.  It was held outdoors and the kids played on the swing set while the adults enjoyed some excellent folk music.  As we were driving home, I noticed she had a massive grass stain on her new pink leggings.  "I have no idea how to get that grass stain out," I told her, frowning.  She sighed (how frustrating it must be for her to have such a slow-witted parent). 

"You would just use an OxyClean PowerPak."  Well, duh.

The kid is planning to ask for a Pillow Pet for Christmas.   I'm not sure if she's getting one or not.  Not getting one would build character, I say.  Just like the character-building I did when my parents refused to buy me some Jordache jeans back in the day.

7 comments:

radioactivegan said...

I'm sorry about the commercials, but at least you don't have to listen to Dora all the time. I'm not sure what alternate dimension she lives in where everything is exactly three steps away; that girl drives me nuts.

Jennifer said...

We fall victim to the mass marketing plan that these companies plan for kids tv.... errr. Anyways, Owen was forever asking us for a pillow pet, but his behavior was awful, so we did a star system. I asked him how many stars HE thought he would have to earn that would justify a pillow pet, he came up with 13(hey this is the kid who's favorite color is black) and it took him a long time to earn it. Last Friday we took him to get at the kiosk at the mall. He loves! And of course little brother had to get one too... ugh. So if she wants one, make her earn, this will build character and have her not hold a grudge haha!

Kim said...

Katie also wants the Twinkle Toe Sketchers. I hate commercials and I'm dreading the holiday season when they air even more of them. Needless to say she is sporting some Saucony sneakers, not the Sketchers that she wants!

Lisa said...

I love those shoes! lol BUT... I would NEVER spend the money on them.

Just Lisa said...

Allie got a pillow pet when she was born, but she never played with it, so I recently sold it at a garage sale. Almost immediately after that, we started seeing the commercials, and now these stinkin' pillow pets are all she can think about. And I'm kicking myself!

Beth said...

I'm thankful that my son (same age as A) still hasn't given up NickJr. (formerly Noggin). No commercials. No SpongeBob (who he hates anyway). And nothing else that's offensive to me.

Those shows, however, really do kill off adult brain cells, don't they?

Kalinda said...

I'm very grateful PBS doesn't have *those* kind of commercials! I think Ajay would be all over anything advertised.
And by the way, I clicked on every link you posted and now I want all of that stuff, too. Seeing all the awesome things one product can do once makes me want it. Seeing them 500x (with the voice-over man that sounds like he's just discovered gold) makes me scream, shut the tv off and vow to never come near their products.