Brands these days have exploded to include just about everything we do and see. Everything is owned by a company, and each one of these companies have a brand. It will not be long until people become brands, living and breathing advertisements for companies, using human empathy and sympathy in order to make the consumer feel comfortable and more inclined to use that specific brand.
For example, take the movie The Truman Show; Truman in this instance is essentially his own brand; a brand that encapsulates all that he does while in reality not granting him any reward. He is exploited by the company around him to advertise products and services, all the while this is done without him knowing.
Some critics say that this was an accurate premonition of modern society’s obsession with “reality” T.V. Think about it; is the Truman brand really that different from that of the Kardashian Empire? Both brands encapsulate the world and both brands transcend normal advertisement boundaries!
The age that we live in is an age of a new type of celebrity; the Lifestyle Celeb. These glorious human beings are who we strive to be, they are our goals and they are our friends. At least, this is true for fans of these lifestyle gurus. These celebrities perfectly cultivate an online presence, and only put up what they want us to see! So really when you are absorbing their content, you are really only seeing the highlight reel of their lives.
An example of this type of personal branding is Zoella. Zoella has cultivated a humongous online following through her YouTube channel, her Instagram, and her Twitter. She has done this so well that the advertisements that she does are blended seamlessly into her brand. She now has 2 books out, a makeup line and even a wax figure of herself in Madame Toussauds! But, we have to keep in mind that this is not who she really is. That’s the only problem with these internet celebrities; we never really know who they are.
If you’re a gamer, just think for a second; what makes games continue to grab your attention and make you want to play? For me, it is the readily available downloadable content, whether it is paid for or not. Usually this content is made by the game’s publisher, and is available for a price. However, there are huge communities of creators who make digital content for games to share with the wider community, free for use.
Companies are fully aware of these communities, and they can choose to embrace the wider community or reject it. Personally, I think that when the user generated community is embraced it enhances the game play amazingly! Take Cities Skylines. This Sim City replica has generated hundreds of thousands of pieces of user generated content, making the possibilities endless for what you can create in game! This is a good example of a company that has embraced the user generated content surrounding its brand, and it’s serving them pretty well!
Music sampling and remixing has been around since the early dawns of personal technology’s; from duplicating records, to producing mix tapes for your loved ones, to the modern age where all music is available online and for free (if you look hard enough), regardless if it is legal or not. Remix culture has become so prevalent in the music industry of today where the lines almost blur in regards to ownership; how do you fairly compensate someone for the use of their riff in your song? Can you claim royalties on a song included in a compilation CD?
For example, when I was younger I heard 2 songs that each had the same riff in them, albeit used in a different way. The riff was from a Michael Jackson song, and was used in two different ways in two different songs. Was Michael compensated for these uses? Or did the re mixer reap the benefits of his hard work? Where is the line?
A new genre of art has arisen with the advanced digital age: pixel art and the glorification of past technologies and the aesthetic they exude. There is a very clear style to this art, with the inclusion of seemingly shoddy graphic work as a valued addition. Molly Soda is a graphic artist in New York. She specializes in GIF work and pixel art, focusing on the everyday struggles the typical Gen Y adult goes through. She runs a Tumblr blog, and her theme is very much into pixel art and graphical glitches.
It’s interesting how the gradual advancement of technology has encouraged artists to glorify the past; we can see this happening with things such as fashion and artistic movement, but it is also very evident within the media. With artists like Molly Soda basing their entire online presence on technology that is slowly eroding, it’s fascinating to see how they progress.
This week we are looking at audiences in the media, and how they provide allowances for dialogic media. Business of today relies on one thing; consumers. And how do we connect with the consumers? Through the use of cleverly placed advertisement and product placement. Companies have developed intrinsic and highly developed ways in which they connect with their target audiences, through the use of third party information, and tailoring advertisements to the individual customer.
Have you realised that after you view an advertisement once, it keeps popping up everywhere? Just recently I used the trial version of Wondershare Filmora in order to create a video for a subject, and then I started to see the advertisement created by the brand pop up before the Youtube videos I watched! An interesting look at how in depth companies go to invade our internet privacy for their corporate gain is seen in this piece; https://vimeo.com/39677781.